Carol VandenHoek is the managing partner in Miller Thomson’s Guelph office and has over 20 years of experience in employment law, litigation including estate matters, agriculture law, and child protection law. Carol’s emphasis on creative solutions is paired with her strong advocacy skills before the court and tribunals. Carol earned her law degree at the University of Toronto, and in 2009 completed her Masters of Law in Labour Relations and Employment Law. Carol also holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Toronto.
Carol acts for employers, and her practice focuses on human rights, discrimination and accommodation, employment standards, discharge, discipline, wrongful dismissal, and policy development and implementation. Carol also conducts workplace investigations including investigations for harassment, violence, and bullying complaints.
Carol acted as outside counsel for the local Children’s Aid Society for approximately 14 years undertaking extensive courtroom advocacy including trial and appellate work. Carol is a panel member for the Ontario Office of the Children’s Lawyer acting for children in custody, access, and child protection matters before the courts.
In Carol’s estate litigation practice she advises on estate disputes ranging from will challenges to power of attorney disputes and matters involving the Public Guardian and Trustee of Ontario. Carol has specialized training in adult guardianship dispute resolution.
Carol has a national leadership role in agribusiness and food at Miller Thomson, working with lawyers in the Firm’s eleven offices across Canada. Carol advises agricultural clients, including producers, processors, agri-businesses, and non-government agricultural organizations on a broad range of topics. Carol often assists agricultural clients in interpreting government policies and procedures and rules and regulations, particularly in regard to managing the relationships between various government agencies and funders.
Carol provides a wide range of additional services to her clients, including:
Employment law: advising employers on agreements, contracts, policies, disciplinary matters, discharges, terminations, human rights, employment standards, wrongful dismissals, harassment, and related investigations.
Human rights: appearing at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal and advising employers on human rights-related matters.
Litigation: advocating before all levels of court including motions and trials.
Workplace safety: advising on Occupational Health and Safety Act matters and defending employers in relation to charges.
Trust and estate litigation and dispute resolution: advising and advocating on a range of issues from will disputes to passing of accounts.
Carol is also a frequent speaker on employment law topics.
- Co-author of “Canada” chapter and publication co-editor (with Wendy Baker), Getting the Deal Through – Agribusiness, Law Business Research, 2017
Carol speaks regularly to employer and HR groups and presents in house seminars and webinars. Highlights include:
- Miller Thomson’s 2017 Labour Relations & Employment Law Conference, “Accommodation Obligations: Expansion and Exposure for Employers”, April 6, 2017
- Miller Thomson Labour and Employment Seminar, Critical Issues for Employers, 2015 and 2016
- Miller Thomson Employment Law Update Webinar Series, 2015 and 2016
- EMC (Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium), Employment Law Legal Updates, 2015 and 2016
- Social Media and Cyber Challenges, Grand Valley HRPA November 2015
- The Do’s and Don’ts of hiring and recruitment, Grand Valley HRPA November 2015
- Employment Law Update, Ontario Agri-Business Association, March 2014
- Update on Health and Safety Law for Employer, Guelph and District Home Builders Association March 2014
- Social Media and Employment Law, HRPA Guelph & District Chapter, March 2012
- Pastors, People and Protection—Employment Law Issues in Church Settings for FEB Central, Cambridge, June and October 2011
- Compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), The Canadian Institute’s Forum on the Duty to Accommodate, April 2011
- Employment Law Lunch and Learn, Guelph Chamber of Commerce, March 2011
- Cyber Challenges, Grand Valley HRPA, February 2011
- Managing Employment Risks and Protecting the Organization, National Conference Canadian Society of Club Managers, October 2010
- New Rules on Civil Procedure: What Every HR Professional Should Know, Osgoode Professional Development, April 2010
- “Employment Equity in Canada: The Legacy of the Abella Report,” C.L.L.R. Vol. 41, No. 2
- “Proposed Expansion of Employer Obligations: New Workplace Sexual Harassment Laws,” Labour and Employment Communiqué, December 2015
- “The Trend to Higher Damage Awards at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal: Employer’s Beware,” July 2015
- “Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act: The Next Ten Years,” Labour and Employment Communiqué, March 31, 2015
- “Gender Equality and Comparative Constitutional Law,” C.L.L.R. Vol. 35, No. 3&4
- Director, Elora Festival 2005 – 2008
- Past President, Wellington Law Association
- Director, Guelph Arts Council, 2003- 2005
- Secretary/Director, Wellington-Dufferin Learning Foundation, 1999- 2003
- Director, Hospice Wellington, 1997- 2001
- Member of Council, Ontario Bar Association & Canadian Bar Association
- Committee Member, Legal Aid Ontario Hamilton-Kitchener District Area Appeals
- Member, Guelph Chamber of Commerce
- Member, Ontario Agri Business Association
Bar admissions & education
- Ontario Bar, 1996
- LL.M. (labour relations and employment law), Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
- LL.B., University of Toronto
- B.Sc., University of Toronto
- Certificate in Alternative Dispute Resolution, York University
Getting the Deal Through – Agribusiness 2017 now available
The 2017 edition of Getting the Deal Through – Agribusiness (Law Business Research) is now available. This comprehensive guide covers the latest developments and trends, providing expert analysis and insight into agricultural laws and regulations worldwide, in a simple-to-read Q&A...
Miller Thomson receives top honours in Chambers Canada
Twelve Miller Thomson lawyers and four practice groups were ranked in the recently published first edition of the Chambers Canada Guide. The Guide ranks leading lawyers and law firms practicing in all provinces and territories across Canada, in over 40...
Carol VandenHoek will be speaking to the Guelph & District Home Builders’ Association on the Top 10 Employment Law Cases of the past year.
Carol VandenHoek will be speaking at the Ontario Agri-Business Association’s employer conference on health and safety issues as they relate to the end of mandatory retirement.
Carol VandenHoek and Evan Campbell participate in a webinar for the KW Chamber of Commerce on the topic of “Employment Law Update, Health & Safety and AODA Compliance.”
Lindsay Doyle, Patricia J. Forte and Carol VandenHoek present a seminar entitled “Update 2012: A Review of Important Employment Law Developments”.
November 20 in London November 22 in Waterloo November 27 in Guelph
Carol VandenHoek speaks on employment issues related to hiring and termination at the Canadian Association of Farm Advisors (CAFA) Wellington County Chapter.
Carol VandenHoek speaks on employment law issues at RBC’s small business client seminar.
Carol VandenHoek speaks on “Compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)” at The Canadian Institute’s Forum on The Duty to Accommodate.
Carol VandenHoek and Bruce McMeekin speak on occupational health and safety issues at the Canadian Farm Builders Association Annual Conference in Guelph.
Carol VandenHoek is chairing a panel regarding cyber-challenges in employment law for the Human Resrouces Professional Association Grand Valley Chapter on February 25, 2010.
GrandValley Human Resources Professionals Association presents Four Member Panel Discussion ~ Cyber Challenges Surfing the internet, social networking, Facebook, instant messaging, white collar crime, porn….challenges employers are tackling on a regular basis. This interactive and educational panel discussion will:...
SWO Labour & Employment Webinar
Carol VandenHoek and Evan Campbell host a Labour & Employment webinar on the topic of “Upcoming Changes to the Ontario Employment/Labour Law – What You Need to Know”.
Miller Thomson’s 2017 Labour Relations & Employment Law Conference
We are pleased to invite you to Miller Thomson’s complimentary Labour Relations & Employment Law Conference. Our featured speakers will provide legal and practical insights on emerging HR topics impacting the workplace. Our program has been pre-approved for 5.75 Continuing Professional Development...
Twists and Turns of Employment Agreements
Carol VandenHoek and Evan Campbell host a Labour & Employment Webinar on the topic “Twists and Turns of Employment Agreements”, on February 28.
SWO Labour & Employment Webinar
Carol VandenHoek and Evan Campbell host a Labour & Employment webinar on the topic of “Twists and Turns of Employment Agreements”.
Responding to Inspections and Incident Investigation
Miller Thomson hosts the Environmental Law Update, “Responding to Inspections and Incident Investigation,” on March 28th at Cambridge City Hall. Please click here to register.
Pastors – People – Protection
Robert Hayhoe, Carol VandenHoek and Sheldon Wood speak on issues affecting churches at a seminar entitled “Pastors – People – Protection.”
Rescheduled – Update 2011: A Review of Important Labour and Employment Law Developments in 2010
Miller Thomson’s Southwestern Ontario Labour and Employment group presents a breakfast seminar entitled, “Update 2011: A Review of Important Labour and Employment Law Developments in 2010.” This event was previously set to take place on Jan. 20 and was rescheduled...
Update 2011: A Review of Important Labour and Employment Law Developments in 2010
Miller Thomson’s Southwestern Ontario Labour and Employment Group presents a breakfast seminar entitled, “Update 2011: A Review of Important Labour and Employment Law Developments in 2010.”
Hot Topic: Managing Disability in the Workplace
Employers have significant legal obligations in employing the disabled and need to manage the associated liabilities. Miller Thomson LLP presents a complimentary breakfast seminar on this hot topic. The seminar focuses on: Statutory and common law obligations of employers &...
Miller Thomson’s Labour and Employment Group will host “Managing the Workplace in Challenging Times: Some Creative Solutions” in Waterloo on June 2
More Employer Obligations on the Horizon? The Domestic and Sexual Violence Protection Act
Employers should be aware of proposed changes which would provide paid and unpaid leaves to employees relating to domestic and/or sexual violence and impose new training requirements for supervisors and workers. Bill 157, the Domestic and Sexual Violence Protection Act,...
Changes Implemented to Ontario’s Production Insurance Regime
In a previous post which may be found here, we discussed legislation tabled by the Ontario government which would amend the province’s production insurance regime and had the potential to widen production insurance coverage to allow livestock, dairy, poultry, and...
Update on CETA: Industry awaits Ratification amidst “Brexit” Uncertainty
In October 2013, it was announced that Canada and the EU had reached an agreement in principle with respect to the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). CETA is intended to co-exist with other trade agreements including the...
Proposed Expansion of Employer Obligations: New Workplace Sexual Harassment Laws
Employers in Ontario need to be aware of the continued evolution and expansion of their obligations relating to harassment in the workplace. The issues of sexual harassment and violence are high on the Ontario Government’s agenda. In March 2015, the...
The Trend to Higher Damage Awards at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal: Employers Beware
A recent decision of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal sets a new record for general damages. The facts of the case are particularly troubling involving two migrant sisters who alleged serious and ongoing sexual solicitations and advances by the owner....
Has the genie escaped his bottle?
The decision of Wilson v. Solis Mexican Foods Inc is the first Ontario Superior Court decision to award a dismissed employee damages for discrimination. Since the amendments to the Human Rights Code (Ontario) in 2008 plaintiffs have the option of...
The Evolution of Family Status: The Uncertainty Continues
In the face of competing views regarding the proper approach in establishing discrimination on the basis of family status, employers are faced with uncertainty in relation to their obligations. These murky waters are likely to continue for some time until...
Liability for Harassment of Transsexual Woman
Recent amendments to the Human Rights Code (Ontario) added to the protected grounds of discrimination both gender expression and gender identity. The recent decision of Vanderputten v. Seydaco Packaging Corp., while filed prior to the amendments, is instructive on the...
Safety Misconduct and Just Cause
The case of Barton v. Rona Ontario Inc.1 raises the issue of dismissal for cause based upon employee misconduct relating to a serious safety violation. In this case, the plaintiff was an assistant store manager who had worked for the employer...
Ontario Court of Appeal Ruling – Mitigation Limitations
The Court of Appeal’s recent ruling in Bowes v. Goss Power Products Ltd., 2012 ONCA 425, will have significant impact on employers who utilize employment agreements. A five judge panel heard the severance case which addressed an important issue in...