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Collecting Past Vacation Pay


Maria asked:

I worked as a Marketing Assistant in Toronto, Ontario on a full time basis from July 2003 through to March 2004. I will not be returning to my place of employment after my maternity time is over in March 2005. I had not received my vacation pay and had only received my final payroll cheque. After many phone calls I was finally emailed by my empoyer that my vacation pay was included in the last cheque I received from them. I don't know if I've receiving the proper amount because I wasn't givin a proper pay stub that explains my hours and days worked. I thought last cheques were seperate from vacation pay? How can I find out if I have been paid properly? My employer insists I have been and is not willing to "double check" the records.


The worker should contact her nearest Ministry of Labour office to determine whether she received the proper amount of vacation pay. Alternatively, she could call the ministry's Employment Standards Call Centre at 416-326-7160 (Toronto area) or toll free 1-800-531-5551.

Under Ontario's Employment Standards Act, 2000, most employees are eligible for a minimum of two weeks of vacation with pay after each 12-month period of employment. As a rule, vacation pay must be at least four per cent of the 'gross" wages earned in the 12-month vacation entitlement period. For details on how vacation pay is calculated, see the Ministry of Labour's vacation fact sheet.

If an employee believes vacation pay is owing, he or she can file a claim with the Ministry of Labour. Unpaid vacation pay may be recovered if the claim is filed within 12 months of the date the vacation pay came due.

About the author

Belinda Sutton is a Communications Officer with the Ontario Ministry of Labour.

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