Lorene Novakowski is a partner in the Labour, Employment and Human Rights Group and the Privacy and Information Protection Group. Her primary practice focuses on providing advice to clients on labour, employment and human rights issues. She has extensive experience in employment litigation, appearing at all levels of court (BC Supreme Court, BC Court of Appeal, Federal Court and Supreme Court of Canada). She gives advice on employment termination issues and administration of collective agreements. She represents employers at the Labour Board, at labour arbitrations, and in human rights complaints. Lorene has experience in providing advice on drafting harassment policies, conducting harassment investigations, providing training on harassment issues and duty to accommodate issues, appearing as counsel in duty to accommodate cases, representing clients before the BC Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission and Tribunal.
Lorene also works closely with the firm's Technology Practice Group, providing advice to clients regarding employment contracts, consultant agreements, non-competition clauses, and employment standards compliance.
With a keen interest in privacy law, Lorene leads the firm's regional Privacy Practice Group and is a member of the firm's national Practice Group on Privacy and Information Protection. Lorene assists employers and businesses to implement privacy policies and procedures, provides training, assists with access requests and provides timely and strategic advice in the event of a privacy breach. She has worked on a number of significant cybersecurity and data breach incident response matters. She has helped clients rapidly and effectively respond to such matters, including through management of forensic investigation teams, development of crisis communications and notification strategies and legal risk management.
Lorene has also acted as counsel in inquiries before the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner, both in public sector and private sector matters and in judicial review applications before the BC Supreme Court and Court of Appeal. She has given advice on compliance in cross-border issues involving the BC public sector privacy law and assisted clients in negotiating privacy agreements with BC public sector bodies. She has given advice in respect of responses to government and law enforcement requests for personal information, and assisted multinational internet service providers in respect of their Canadian privacy obligations.
Lorene practises in the area of workers' compensation claims and occupational health and safety and appears before the Review Division and Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal, on behalf of her clients. She has represented clients on claims issues, including wage loss and pension claims, and in hearings related to penalties for Part 3 violations. She has also conducted training sessions on occupational health and safety due diligence requirements.
Lorene is a popular speaker and avid author on all matters related to her practice. Her latest book Personal Information Protection Act - British Columbia and Alberta: Quick Reference - 2014 Edition outlines employer requirements in each province with respect to the collection, disclosure, enforcement rules, process and use of personal information by organizations.
Honours and Awards
- Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory 2016 for Occupational Health & Safety and Workplace Human Rights (Employer)
- Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory 2014 for Workplace Human Rights (Management)
- Director, BC Human Resources Management Association Board of Directors (2002-2008)
- Director, Interlock Board of Directors (2006-2008)
- Former Co-Chair, Human Rights Section of the Canadian Bar Association, BC Branch (1999-2000)
- Law Clerk, British Columbia Court of Appeal (1991-1992)
- British Columbia Privacy Professionals Networking Forum
- British Columbia Human Resources Management Association
- Privacy, and Labour Law Sections, Canadian Bar Association (BC Branch)