J. Geoffrey Howard

Principal and Founder

“My longtime clients tell me they stay for my responsiveness, high level of communication, and practical, cost-sensitive advice.”

Geoffrey Howard is the founder and principal of Howard Employment Law* where he provides strategic and practical advice on employment and labour law matters and represents clients in employment-related litigation.

Geoffrey has extensive experience representing both employers and employees in all aspects of the employment relationship, including employment agreements, termination of employment, and human rights issues such as discrimination and the duty to accommodate. Geoffrey also has considerable experience advising employers on benefit plans, including pension, disability and group insurance coverage and regulatory compliance issues. He advises companies and owners on shareholder disputes arising out of termination of employment.

A senior advisor to multi-national and regional employers in respect of their Canadian workforce, Geoffrey Howard helps clients solve workplace issues in a practical and cost-effective way.

Geoffrey’s clients come from industries ranging from high-tech, life sciences, biotech, and mining, to retail and professional services, come to him for his expertise in managing relations between employers and non-union employees. He frequently advises on stock options, restricted stock units (RSU), pensions, bonuses, shareholder agreements and constructive dismissals. He also advises and represents clients in disputes over post-employment competition arising from non-compete agreements and restrictive covenants.

When working with his clients, Geoffrey Howard combines regular client communication and follow-up, with a cost-effective and creative approach to resolve employment problems and litigation. He is responsive, practical and aims to ensure that there are no surprises for his clients.

Geoffrey also speaks and writes on a wide range of employment law topics, including authoring articles for a variety of publications and delivering training seminars to clients, managers and professionals on workplace law issues.

Outside of work, Geoff enjoys biking, hiking, tennis and recovering from it all with yoga.

* doing business through Howard Employment Law Corporation

EDUCATION AND CREDENTIALS

  • University of British Columbia (LL.B. 1997)
  • Call to the Bar: British Columbia 1994, Ontario 1989
  • Lexpert-Ranked Lawyer, multiple years
  • International Who’s Who Labour and Employment recognized lawyer, multiple years

MEMBERSHIPS/AFFILIATIONS

  • Chartered Professionals in Human Resources of British Columbia and Yukon (CPHR), former Director and Co-Chair Public Policy Committee
  • Canadian Bar Association, Employment, Labour and Privacy Section member
  • Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers (CACE)

PUBLICATIONS

See also Geoff’s Employer Alerts

 

PRESENTATIONS

  • Bullying and Harassment: What Every Employer Needs to Know
  • Employment Agreements 101
  • Employment Standards Overview
  • Managing Disability in the Workplace
  • Taking the Next Step: Primer on the Differences/Similarities Between Canadian and US Employment Laws
  • Up In Smoke: The New Era of Workplace Drug Management
  • Employee Management: From Counselling Through Termination
  • Understanding and Managing Risks Associated with Workplace Privacy
  • Top Employment Risks Affecting Your Bottom Line and How to Manage Them

RECENT CASES

  • Spalti v MDA Systems (2018 BCSC 2296) – B.C. Supreme Court, 2018: Obtained a significant severance award for a long-term, specialized sales executive who had been laid off as part of a restructuring.
  • Gescan v Robertson Electric BC – B.C. Supreme Court, 2017: Successfully settled major breach of confidentiality claim after obtaining a court-ordered forensic review that disclosed the true scope of misuse of the plaintiff’s confidential information.

REQUEST A CONSULT WITH GEOFFREY.