Interpretation Guidelines Manual British Columbia Employment Standards Act and Regulations
EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS REGULATION - PART 2 - EMPLOYMENT AGENCIES AND FARM LABOUR CONTRACTORS
ESR Section 2 – Licensing of Employment Agencies
This section explains the application process in order to obtain an employment agency licence.
Licensing of employment agencies
2. (1) An application for a licence to operate an employment agency must
(a) be made to the director, and
(b) be accompanied by a fee of $100.
(2) The director may issue an employment agency licence only if the applicant has
(a) completed a written application in a form required by the director,
(b) paid the licence fee, and
(c) satisfied the director that the applicant will operate an employment agency in the best interests of employers and persons seeking employment.
(3) The director may refuse to issue a licence to an applicant who has had a previous licence cancelled.
Section 12 of the Employment Standards Act prohibits a person from operating an employment agency unless the person is licensed under the Act.
An “employment agency” is defined in s.1of the Act as follows:
"employment agency" means a person who, for a fee, recruits or offers to recruit employees for employers;
Talent agencies that only recruit actors, performers, extras, or technical creative film persons are excluded from this section. The requirements for licensing of talent agencies are outlined in Employment Standards Regulation, s.38.
Under this section, an employer must submit an application form, which includes a completed questionnaire, to the director, accompanied by a $100 fee. Application forms can be obtained from any Employment Standards Branch office. For an electronic version of the application form, visit website Employment Standards Forms.
The director will only issue an employment agency licence if:
- the required application form has been submitted to the Employment Standards Branch;
- the application form is accompanied by the completed questionnaire;
- the $100 licence fee has been paid;
- the director conducts an interview and is satisfied that the agency will operate in the best interests of employers and persons seeking employment.
If an employment agency operates at more than one location, only one license is required. The applicant need only submit one application, along with one fee of $100, but must include the addresses for all locations on the application.
Where an applicant has previously had an employment agency licence cancelled, the director may refuse to issue a licence.
Related sections of the Act or Regulation
- s.1, Definition, “employment agency”
- s.1, Definition,“talent agency”
- s.8, No false representations
- s.9, No hiring of children under 15 without director ’s permission
- s.10, No charge for hiring or providing information
- s.11, No fees to other persons
- s.12, Employment and talent agencies must be licensed
- s.3, Employment agency records
- s.4, Cancellation or suspension of employment agency licence
- s.9(1), Rules about licenses
- s.10, If a license is refused cancelled or suspended
- s.11, Surrender of license
- s.12, Appeals from the refusal cancellation and suspension on a license