On May 19, 2020, Bill 191, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Amendment Act (Presumption Respecting COVID-19), 2020 (“Bill 191”), was introduced in the Ontario Legislature as a Private Member’s Bill and its First Reading carried.
Bill 191 still must go to Committee, pass a Second Reading and Third Reading, and receive Royal Assent before it can be made law. Accordingly, currently the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997 (Ontario) (“WSIA”) has not been amended as proposed under Bill 191.
If passed, Bill 191 would amend the WSIA adding a new section 15.0.1, to create a rebuttable presumption that if a worker for an essential business receives a positive test for COVID-19, the disease will be presumed to be an occupational disease that occurs due to the nature of the worker’s work, unless the contrary is shown. MORE.