Articles & Publications

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Addressing Climate Change: Can Natural Asset Management Actually Reduce Liability Risk?

As published in Risk Management Tidbits: Fall 2019 – Special Edition – 2019 Legal Roundup

It has been widely acknowledged that climate change is having an impact on local governments. Lately, much has been written advocating for the use of natural asset management to reduce the impacts of climate change. But every novel approach carries with it uncertainty about the potential for increased risks. So, the next question that is trending is: what are the liability risks of addressing climate change through natural asset management?

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Will Collaboration Be Achieved Under the CCDC 30 Integrated Project Delivery Contract?

As published in SICA Construction Review Fall 2019

The Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) has been used successfully in the U.S., the U.K. and Australia for approximately 20 years, but is a new development in Construction in Canada.

Unlike the traditional approach involving separate contracts between the principal constructions parties, the basic principles underlying IPD are the sharing of risk and reward, early involvement and equality of stakeholders, project-first thinking…

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Know your Construction Insurance Policy!

As published in Northern Construction Connection November 2019 Newsletter

Construction has inherent risks that can be significant, which has resulted in the supply of a number of insurance products to cover such risks.  For most construction projects, several different policies are secured that are intended to be complimentary…

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Bill M 223— Prompt Payment Legislation in British Columbia

As published in Northern Construction Connection October 2019 Newsletter

On May 29, 2019, a member of the opposition party in British Columbia (Liberal House Leader, Mary Polak), introduced Bill M-223 (the Prompt Payment (Builders Lien) Act).

Bill M-223 aims to modernize the existing Builders Lien Act and to bring British Columbia in line with other jurisdictions that are introducing prompt payment reforms, including Ontario, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, New Brunswick, and Quebec. The underlying objective of prompt payment legislation is to ensure that those who provide services or materials to a construction project are paid in a timely manner. The stated intention is to minimize payment disputes and unnecessary financial hardships associated with late payment…

 

 

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Minimizing Construction Disputes

As published in Construction Business Magazine September/October 2019.

It seems inevitable that construction projects come with delays and disputes, which are disruptive to the efficient progression of the project, and costly to all parties.

In any well-functioning relationship, it is important for the participants to be aware of the interests and incentives of the other parties to the relationship.  In a construction project, the owner seeks value for money, and a project that is on-time and on-budget.  The contractor wants to run its operations efficiently, make a profit, and obtain a good reference for future work.  In order to obtain these objectives, it is in the interests of all parties to minimize disputes during a construction project.

In this article, I will identify some of the common causes of delays and disputes, and provide some tips about the tools and strategies available to secure the effective delivery of a construction project…

 

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Workplace safety is no game – Roll the dice and you may go straight to jail

As published in BUILD Magazine 2019/2020

Imagine yourself facing criminal charges and the stigma of a criminal conviction, or serving jail time and paying a hefty fine. Could you have done something differently to avoid such consequences?

This article chronicles five decisions where criminal convictions were handed down for workplace accidents since a broader regime of criminal liability under the Criminal Code was brought into force in 2004…

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Construction Bonds: A Useful Tool in a Local Government’s Strongbox

As published in Roadrunner Fall 2018:

Construction bonds are commonly used for public works infrastructure projects. Broadly speaking, a bond is a three-party agreement between the bonding company (the “Surety”), the service provider, such as a general or subcontractor (the “Principal” or “contractor”) and the service recipient or beneficiary, such as the project owner (the “Obligee” or “owner”). Under the bond, the Surety is required to step in and fulfill the Principal’s obligations to the Obligee in the event that the Principal breaches its obligations…

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A Battle of Priorities – Municipal property taxes and court orders in insolvency proceedings

Revenue from taxes on land and improvements are the life blood of municipal services.  As such, it is not surprising that each of Canada’s provinces and territories have enacted legislation to authorize not only the imposition and collection of such “property taxes,” but also to secure their collection. While there are some differences in the statutory language between jurisdictions, the various provincial and territorial statutes dealing with municipal and…

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The Climate is Changing, Are We?

As published in Roadrunner Summer 2018:

The provincial and federal governments, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) have officially stated that climate change is having an impact on local governments and their infrastructure due to increased extreme weather events and a rise in sea levels. The legal liability risks of climate change impacts include potential negligence claims, nuisance claims and regulatory liability…

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