: Atlantic Construction Counsel - Fall 2012

December 10, 2012

Liens by architects in Atlantic Canada 

It is a commonly held misconception, or perhaps an often overlooked issue, that the provisions of mechanics' or builders' lien legislation do not apply to architects. There is some variance in the legislation across the country but in Atlantic Canada a review of the lien provisions makes it clear that architects have rights to lien in certain circumstances and in such cases, owners are required to maintain a holdback from payments in accordance with the provisions of the applicable provincial lien legislation.

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Punishment and defence – recent developments in occupational health and safety

Workplace health and safety has always been a concern of owners in the construction industry, especially in light of strict legislation across Canada. In 2012, we have seen a number of significant penalties resulting from an infraction of health and safety regulations, a workplace accident or a fatality on the construction site. It has become abundantly clear that owners are ultimately responsible for workplace safety on their work sites. It continues to be difficult – but not impossible – to mount a defence where an infraction has been noted or an injury has occurred.

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Protecting lien rights in the face of a CCAA application: practical lessons learned from NewPage

When an owner is unable to meet its financial obligations, it may, under certain circumstances, seek protection under the Companies Creditors Arrangement Act, RSC 1985, c.C-36 ("CCAA").

The CCAA is a remedial statute which grants the court broad powers to facilitate the making of an arrangement or compromise between the debtor company and its creditors while the debtor company either attempts to reorganize its affair. Or, in more recent times, to sell substantially all of its assets to preserve it as a going concern under new ownership, or to wind up or liquidate.

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This newsletter is intended to provide brief informational summaries only of legal developments and topics of general interest and does not constitute legal advice or create a solicitor-client relationship. The newsletter should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultation with a lawyer with respect to the reader's specific circumstances. Each legal or regulatory situation is different and requires review of the relevant facts and applicable law. If you have specific questions related to this newsletter or its application to you, you are encouraged to consult a member of our firm to discuss your needs for specific legal advice relating to the particular circumstances of your situation. Due to the rapidly changing nature of the law, Stewart McKelvey is not responsible for informing you of future legal developments.

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