More important changes will affect employers and employees in Ontario as of Jan. 1, 2016 as part of the AODA phase-in.

Requirement: Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005

Date of Requirement Below: Jan. 1, 2016

The AODA contains an Employment Standards section. Employers must establish new internal practices regarding the recruitment, accommodation and advancement of employees.

Among other things, employers with 50 or more employees must now, in writing:


Implement Individual Accommodation Plans a written process that must include:

  1. the manner in which the employee requesting accommodation can participate in the development of the individual accommodation plan;
  2. the means by which the employee is assessed on an individual basis;
  3. the manner in which the employer can request an evaluation by an outside medical or other expert, at the employers expense, to determine how accommodation can be achieved;
  4. the manner in which the employee can request the participation of their bargaining agent, or other representative (if not unionized), in the development of the accommodation plan;
  5. the steps that will be taken to protect the privacy of the employees personal information;
  6. the frequency and manner in which the individual accommodation plan will be reviewed and updated;
  7. if an accommodation plan is denied, the manner in which the reasons for denial will be proved to the employee; and
  8. the means of providing the individual accommodation plan in an accessible format; and
  9. if requested or required, include information regarding the employees accessible formats and communication supports provided, individualized workplace emergency response information and any other accommodation measures provided.


Implement a Return to Work Process for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and require disability-related accommodation in order to return to work, which must, in writing:

  1. outline the steps that the employer will take to facilitate the return to work of employees who were absent because their disability required them to be away from work; and
  2. use individual accommodation plans (as discussed above) as part of the process.


If an employees illness or injury is covered by the return to work provisions of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, this process is not required for that employee and the WSIBs process will apply.

Overlap with Ontario Human Rights Code:

These new processes, in writing, should also be incorporated and aligned with the accommodation requirements of the Ontario Human Rights Code, too and the steps taken by employers to accommodate an employee for the Code.  

This WARDS PC BLAWG is for general information only. It is not legal advice, or intended to be. Specific or more information may be necessary before advice could be provided for your circumstances.

More information? We’re here to help – [email protected]  www.wardlegal.ca

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