Robert: BC woman forced to pay back employer for “time theft”
Written by Robert Shawn on January 16, 2023
A woman in B.C. has been ordered to repay her old employer after being found guilty of “time theft”.
The Civil Resolution Tribunal of British Columbia ruled that Karlee Besse, formerly an accountant at Reach CPA, had to payback $2603 to the firm after collecting wages for time worked when she wasn’t actually working.
According to Reach CPA, Besse joined the company in 2021, under the agreement that she would work remotely from home. Using time tracking software on Besse’s laptop, the company said they discovered 50.76 unaccounted hours that the worker claimed on her time sheets.
Besse claimed she she spent a significant amount of time working with paper copies of work documents and that there is no way the software could have known the difference.
Reach counter-argued by providing data of Besse’s printing activity and that there was no evidence that she had physical copies of the documents she claimed to have.
“Time theft in the employment context is viewed as a very serious form of misconduct,” said tribunal member Megan Stewart. “Given that trust and honesty are essential to an employment relationship, particularly in a remote-work environment where direct supervision is absent, I find Miss Besse’s misconduct led to an irreparable breakdown in her employment relationship with Reach and that dismissal was proportionate in the circumstances. So, I find Reach had just cause to terminate Ms. Besse’s employment.”