Generally, the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) requires employers to have an Approval for Excess Weekly Hours prior to employees working hours in excess of 48 in a work week. However, the ESA does provide a limited exception to this requirement where an application for approval is pending and the Director has not yet made a decision on it by issuing an Approval or a Notice of Refusal.
If an employer satisfies all nine conditions set out below, an employee will be permitted to work more than 48 hours, up to a maximum of 60 hours, in a work week pending the Ministry's processing of the employer's application. This limit applies even if the agreements with the employees to whom the application applies are for hours in excess of 60 hours in a work week.
This condition means the most an employee can work pending approval is 60 hours in a work week even it the employer has applied for approval for more than 60 hours and the employee has agreed in writing to work more than 60 hours.
If the employee has agreed in writing to work more than 48 hours but less than 60 hours in a work week, then that number will be the maximum number of hours the employee can work. For example, if the employee has agreed to work only up to 55 hours in a work week, pending approval, the maximum number of hours that employee can work is 55 hours. Even if approval is ultimately granted, the most the employee is permitted to work remains 55 hours per work week.
Remember that no excess weekly hours can be worked pending approval unless all nine conditions are met.
Disclaimer: This resource has been prepared to help employees and employers understand some of the minimum rights and obligations established under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) and regulations. It is not legal advice. It is not intended to replace the ESA or regulations and reference should always be made to the official version of the legislation. Although we endeavor to ensure that the information in this resource is as current and accurate as possible, errors do occasionally occur. The ESA provides minimum standards only. Some employees may have greater rights under an employment contract, collective agreement, the common law or other legislation. Employers and employees may wish to obtain legal advice.