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Introducing the Construction Remedies Act

Kenneth McCullogh, QC and Conor O’Neil, P.Eng.

On December 18, 2020, the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick passed the Construction Remedies Act. After nearly a year the new legislation will come into force on Monday, November 1, 2021. Our update outlining some of the major differences between the Construction Remedies Act and its predecessor, the Mechanics’ Lien Act is available online here.

Transition provisions

The new act will apply to all contracts entered into on or after November 1, 2021. Despite the repeal of the Mechanics’ Lien Act, that legislation will continue to apply to any contracts entered into before November 1, 2021. In other words, any contracts currently being performed will not be subject to a change in law.

Almost all of the sections of the Construction Remedies Act will come into force on November 1, with some exceptions. Importantly, the provisions which require an owner of a construction project to create a holdback trust account, which could prove to be administratively burdensome to many owners, will not come into force on November 1. It is expected that there will be changes made to the regulations and that these sections will come into force on a later date.

The regulations, which are now available online here, prescribe new forms to be used for filings of liens and projects where mandatory surety bonding is required on Crown or local government projects.

What’s next

It could still be several months before the effects of the new legislation are known in practice. Given that the transitional provisions flow with the dates of contracts parties managing several projects should pay careful attention to the dates of those contracts to determine which legislation applies.


This update is intended for general information only. If you have questions about how the information above may affect you, please contact any member of our construction group.

 

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