Richard J. Charney
Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP
Richard J. CharneyvCard
Related services and key industries
- Employment and labor
- Federal employment and labour
- Human rights
- Construction and engineering
Key industry sectors
Richard Charney is a senior partner in our Toronto office, where he practises management labour relations and employment law, a field in which he is widely recognized as an advocate on behalf of national and local clients. For more than 10 years, he was Norton Rose Fulbright's global head of employment and labour.
Mr. Charney acts for numerous employers and employers’ organizations and appears at provincial and federal labour relations boards and the courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and before rights and interest labour arbitration tribunals. He also advises on all matters of employment and labour law and legislative reform. Mr. Charney’s practice also involves collective bargaining on behalf of employers, employment standards, human rights, wrongful dismissal, workplace health and safety and constitutional law.
He is particularly active as an advocate before national labour tribunals such as the Canada Industrial Relations Board, which has jurisdiction over transportation and similar national industries; the Ontario Labour Relations Board, which has jurisdiction in provincial industries such as construction; and in judicial review challenges to tribunal determinations in the federal and provincial superior courts.
Mr. Charney is also a leading labour counsel to a variety of well-known arts and cultural organizations in Canada.
Professional experienceExpand all Collapse all
- Ontario 1983
Mr. Charney has successfully acted for the following clients:
- A federally regulated transportation undertaking that successfully sought the consolidation of numerous bargaining units into a single bargaining unit (by the Canada Industrial Relations Board)
- An Ontario municipality opposing a union's challenge to the constitutionality of deemed non-construction employer legislation.
- A variety of construction associations seeking to expand or establish accreditation bargaining rights
- A provincial employers' organization, where an arbitrator rejected a union grievance claiming that a number of employers were in violation of the recently increased minimum wage, when their hourly rate fell below the minimum wage but the entire compensation package exceeded it
- A provincial transportation undertaking, where the Ontario Divisional Court was convinced to uphold an arbitration award that sustained the employer's decision to eliminate free transportation passes for the guests of employees
- A provincial transportation undertaking, wherein the Ontario Divisional Court overturned an arbitration award that, if sustained, would have expanded a union's bargaining rights
- A provincial electric power utility at arbitration, establishing the right of an employer to terminate the employment of a unionized employee who underperforms
- A provincial power utility against an unfair labour practice accusation at the Ontario Labour Relations Board with respect to conduct before and during strike activity
- A major pulp and paper producer in a judicial review challenge to an arbitration decision that concluded the employer discriminated when it provided different benefits to employees on long-term disability than to employees under workers’ compensation coverage. The Ontario Divisional Court quashed the arbitrator’s ruling
- An Ontario-based broadcaster at arbitration with respect to a union challenge to a management decision to the effect that an employee with seniority was unqualified for a particular position
- Best Lawyers in Canada: Labour and Employment Law, 2006-2023
- The Legal 500 Canada: Labour and Employment (Hall of Fame), 2023
- Chambers Canada, Ontario: Employment and Labour (Band 1), Chambers and Partners, 2016-2023
- Lexology Client Choice Awards, 2022 and 2013 for Labour & Employment in Canada
- Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, 2012-2023: recommended in Employment Law (Employer); Labour Relations (Management); Labour Relations - Construction Sector (Management); 2022-2023: recommended in Workplace Human Rights (Employer)
- The Legal 500 Canada: Labour and Employment (Leading Lawyer), 2017-2022
- Chambers Canada, "Employment Lawyer of the Year," 2021
- Who's Who Legal: Canada - Labour, Employment & Benefits 2014-2015, 2020
- Chambers Canada, Nationwide: Employment and Labour (Band 1), Chambers and Partners, 2017-2020
- Chambers Global, Canada: Employment and Labour (Band 1), Chambers and Partners, 2018
- The International Who’s Who of Management Labour and Employment Lawyers, 2011-2013
- Co-Chair, Vertra Forums Construction Labour & Employment Relations Conference 2021, November 30 and December 1, 2021
- "COVID-19 and International Workplace Implications," American Employment Law Council, October 16, 2020.
- "Expansion of Labor Arbitration and the Role of the Courts," 10th International Labour and Employment Relations Association, June 27, 2020.
- Co-Chair, Vertra Forums Construction Labour & Employment Relations Conference 2019, December 9, and 10, 2019
- "Bill 66 - Schedule 9: Restoring Ontario's Competitiveness Act, 2019. How do we address the outcome?" Vertra Forums Construction Labour & Employment Relations Conference, December 9, 2019.
- "Marijuana in the Workplace," American Employment Law Council, October 24, 2019.
- "The Impact of Marijuana in the Workplace - What Employers Need to Know," Canada Labour and Employee Relations Network, April 30, 2019.
- "Construction Labour: Top 5 Things You Need to Know," The Osgoode Certificate in Construction Law, November 2, 2018, and December 1, 2017, Toronto, ON.
- "Human Rights and the Canadian Workplace: The Right to Equality, The Freedom to Associate" (lecturer), Tel Aviv University Faculty of Law, April 30, 2018, Tel Aviv, Israel.
- Co-chair, Insight 8th Biennial Construction Labour Relations Conference, November 6 and 7, 2017, Toronto, ON.
- "The New Era of Workplace Drug & Alcohol Testing," Insight 8th Biennial Construction Labour Relations Conference, November 6, 2017, Toronto, ON.
- "Law, Work and Family Care: A Symposium," York University, February 18, 2017, Toronto, ON.
- American Employment Law Council, 2014 to present
- Fellow, The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers (elected 2012)
- Member, Tel Aviv University International Board of Governors, 2017 to present
- Adjunct professor, University of Toronto Faculty of Law, 2006-2015
- Faculty member, Osgoode Hall Law School Graduate Program (instructor in collective bargaining), 2001-2002
Beyond COVID-19: Crisis response or road to recovery?
Update | November 18, 2022
Transforming workplace: Global changes in the way we work
Publication | March 01, 2022
Returning to the workplace and future of work
Publication | September 2021