Legal Insights / Fees / Employee Handbooks: information needed, timeline & fees

Employee Handbooks: information needed, timeline & fees

Apr 1 2024

Employee handbooks typically contain a wide range of policies and guidelines tailored to the specific needs and culture of the organization. While the exact content can vary based on industry, company size, and location, some of the most common policies found in employee handbooks are set out below. We are happy to assist in crafting an employee handbook for any industry and size of company.

Why have an Employee Handbook?

  1. Promotes consistency and fairness.
  2. Ensures compliance with BC or federal law (as applicable).
  3. Promotes best practices and expectations around values, mission and performance.
  4. Creates a safer environment.

WhAt Typically Is Included?

This really depends on the size of your organization and the industry. We can custom draft all sorts of things to include in an employee handbook to cover your concerns. Below are common policies that we see in employee handbooks.

  1. Code of Conduct/Ethics: Outlines the expected behaviour and ethical standards for employees, including guidelines for professionalism, integrity, and confidentiality. If there are any industry standards that need to be upheld, these would typically be referenced here.
  2. Anti-Bullying and Harassment: Provides policies and procedures for addressing bullying and harassment in the workplace. This is a mandatory policy for BC employers, including procedures for addressing incidents and complaints.
  3. Equal Opportunity: Ensures fair treatment of all employees regardless of race, colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, or other protected characteristics.
  4. Attendance and Punctuality: Defines expectations for attendance, punctuality, and time-off requests, including procedures for reporting absences and lateness.
  5. Work Hours and Overtime: Specifies regular work hours, breaks, and policies related to overtime pay, if applicable.
  6. Remote Working: Outlines requirements around working from home, including things like who to contact if away from your desk and need to maintain confidentiality of client info, whether using company or personal devices.
  7. Cybersecurity: Addresses various areas of concern relating to protection of an organization’s networks and digital property such as password strength and changing, use of personal devices and identifying illegitimate emails and attachments.
  8. Leave Policies: Includes information on vacation, sick leave, holidays, bereavement leave, parental leave, and other types of leave available to employees.
  9. Health and Safety: Outlines workplace safety procedures, emergency protocols, and expectations for maintaining a safe work environment.
  10. Employee Benefits: Provides an overview of available benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, employee assistance programs, and other perks (like reduced fees for services, etc).
  11. Performance Management: Describes the performance evaluation process, performance expectations, and procedures for addressing performance issues.
  12. Technology and Internet Usage: Establishes guidelines for appropriate use of company technology, email, internet access, and social media.
  13. Conflict of Interest: Addresses situations where an employee’s personal interests may conflict with the interests of the company and outlines disclosure requirements.
  14. Personal relationships between Employees: Sets out expectations around professionalism in the workplace and the power imbalance that exists where a supervisor may be involved.
  15. Termination Procedures: Outlines the process for terminating employment, including notice periods, exit interviews, and procedures for returning company property. It is generally recommended for employers to set out termination provisions in employee contracts. More information about employment contracts can be found on our website here:

Information Needed

We will need to know which policies you would like to include and a general framework for what you would like to see in those policies – whether included above or other issues you would like addressed.

The only required policy for BC employers to have is the Anti-Bullying and Harassment (Or Respectful Workplace Policy). We generally recommend incorporating this policy into your Employee Handbook unless you already have it as a standalone policy. More information on this type of policy can be viewed on our website here:


An employee handbook is not something that should be rushed and is likely to go through a multiple rounds of edits. This is a detailed exercise that sets the tone for your organization internally for employees. Depending on the number of policies, complexity and what policies you already have in place that we may just be reviewing for legal compliance, this process can typically be completed within 1 month.


Ultimately, the cost will come down to how detailed the employee handbook is and whether we need to custom draft policies or are incorporating existing policies and number of revisions. Typically, the cost ranges from $4000-$7500 as it depends on the amount of time involved. We will generally request a retainer of $4000 to get started.

If we are custom drafting a specific policy, our standard fee is $1000 plus tax.

We are pleased to offer a 10% discount on workplace policies or handbooks drafted for companies that have their registered and records office through RDM.


A member of our Employment Law team will be happy to assist you in preparing your employee handbook. Please contact our Litigation Intake Team at 778.666.3723 or by email at If you have your corporate file with us just let our corporate team know and we will be happy to liaise with them.

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