News & Publications Results

Title Date
Lawson Lundell Announces Key Addition to Project Development Team: JoAnn P. Jamieson

We are pleased to welcome JoAnn P. Jamieson to our partnership and the Calgary office. JoAnn has recognized expertise and experience in navigating complex regulatory proceedings and environmental processes, and resolving aboriginal and other stakeholder concerns.

Oil Sands and Shale Gas - Western Canada’s Unconventional Answer to Global Energy Demand

Canada is uniquely positioned to provide an abundance of secure and reliable energy. With conventional oil supply declining, the need for unconventional resources, like oil sands and shale gas, will increase. Alberta and British Columbia, Canada’s two western-most provinces, house the vast majority of Canada’s oil and natural gas deposits, making both provinces key players in the push to develop resources sufficient to meet growing energy demand in North America and beyond.

Overview of the Differences between the U.S. and Canadian Entity Classification Systems

Entity classification refers to a set of rules used in the U.S. tax system to classify entities for the purposes of the Internal Revenue Code. Once classified, the entity will either be subject to the Code rules for corporations or the Code rules for partnerships.

Lawson Lundell wins Lexpert Zenith Award for Corporate and Law Firm Social Responsibility

On September 21, 2011, Rita Andreone, Michael Lee, Brad Armstrong, Q.C., Chris Sanderson, Q.C., Michael Morgan and Sarah Nelligan were named winners of 2011 Lexpert Zenith Awards: Celebrating Corporate and Law Firm Social Responsibility.

Contract Law Update: Developments of Note

This paper reviews judgments dealing with contract law issues relevant to commercial lawyers and business leaders. This paper also considers private international law conventions and treaties that are en route to domestic implementation, and are therefore relevant to commercial practice.

The Launch of the .xxx Top Level Domain Name - Protecting Your Brand's Reputation

The organization that controls most of the Internet's gTLD's (generic top level domain names, such as .com and .net) has approved the use of .xxx as a new gTLD. That has a number of trade-mark owners worried about the potential for reputational risk or damage to goodwill with the registration in the .xxx domain of their brands. The .xxx gTLD is for use by those involved in the adult entertainment industry. For everyone else, the thought of a brand being associated with this gTLD is somewhat concerning.

Supreme Court of Canada Confirms Utility of Administrative Law in Aboriginal Consultation Cases

Two recent decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada provide significant insight into the nature and purpose of the Crown’s duty to consult with Aboriginal peoples—what it is, and just as importantly, what it is not—and the interplay of the duty with administrative law principles. 

Lawyer as Escrow Agent – Is it Worth It?

Acting as an escrow agent is a common task of lawyers in British Columbia, especially, the solicitor, as a component of transactions. The duties of an escrow agent are primarily contractual and the escrow agent must carry out the duties accordingly, in a non-negligent fashion and without misconduct. Lawyers must take care not to agree as escrow agent to duties that are in conflict with their duties as counsel, but there are additional considerations.

Corporate Secretary: Practising Law?

The position of Corporate Secretary has evolved over the years. For some organizations, gone are the days when the Corporate Secretary was a mere corporate record custodian, certifier of corporate organizational facts and note-taker. Bylaws, board mandates, shareholder agreements and other governance documents, not to mention job descriptions, may or may not fully describe the expectations that now often go with the role. This article examines the role of the Corporate Secretary.

US Canada Cross-Border Tax: Getting out of Canada

With the U.S. economy not as robust as it once was, it seems that Americans are currently more interested in selling their Canadian assets, particularly recreational property, than buying Canadian assets. It is therefore useful to consider the issues that arise when a U.S. person sells Canadian real estate.

The following points are relevant:

- The U.S. person will be required to prepay tax on any gain arising from the Canadian real estate; and

- If the real estate has been rented, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will require the U.S. person to catch up on any unpaid tax on the rental revenue.

Hydraulic Fracturing – A Balancing of Interests

This article looks at the United State's Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) concern about the potential environmental and human health impacts of hydraulic fracturing in the United States and how the Canadian federal government appears content to delegate regulation of hydraulic fracturing to the various provincial governments and their regulatory agencies.

Restructuring Employee Benefits: Options and Restrictions

Financial pressures often prompt an employer to review the benefits provided to employees and former employees in order to determine whether changes can be made that would decrease the cost of those benefits. Other times an employer will make changes to the benefits it offers in order to attract new employees or to better respond to the demographics of its workforce. This paper explores some of the more common changes employers make in respect of the benefits they offer to active and retired employees and highlights the more significant restrictions on an employer’s ability to implement those changes.

Chris Sanderson and Keith Bergner Receive the Premier's Collaboration Award (NWT)

On May 18, 2011, Chris Sanderson and Keith Bergner received the Premier's Collaboration Award (NWT) for their work on the Mackenzie Gas Project.

Supreme Court of Canada Weighs in on Disclosure Standard in Relation to Real Estate Developments in British Columbia

On May 11, 2011, the Supreme Court of Canada released its reasons for judgment in Sharbern Holding Inc. v. Vancouver Airport Centre Ltd, 2011 SCC 23.

While the case was decided under the now repealed Real Estate Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 397, the findings are nonetheless of interest to real estate developers governed by the Real Estate Development Marketing Act, S.B.C. 2004, c. 41 (“REDMA”). Much of the Court’s analysis should apply in the context real estate developments and disclosure statements governed by REDMA despite some content differences between the repealed and current statute. In addition, the decision has relevance to other statutory disclosure regimes based on the concept of materiality, such as securities law regimes.

Pre-Sale Law Critical to BC Development Industry in any Real Estate Market

BC’s Real Estate Development and Marketing Act (REDMA) and its associated regulations and policies is an essential piece of legislation that allows the multi-family, new home market to operate. An understanding of its function is critical for both developers and property buyers in BC.

To Fund or Not to Fund for Solvency - Who Gets the Breaks?

During difficult economic times, sponsors of defined benefit pension plans have had to deal with plan deficits. This paper compares how the Canadian federal government and different provinces deal with solvency funding relief, jurisdiction by jurisdiction.

Labour & Employment Bulletin: Federal Elections – Employee Voting Time Entitlement and Company Computers and the Employee’s Expectation of Privacy

This bulletin contains information on employee voting time entitement during federal elections. Also discussed is whether employees have a reasonable expectation of privacy over their computer data.

Lawson Lundell establishes the Lawson Lundell LLP Entrance Scholarship at the UBC Law School

Lawson Lundell is pleased to announce a commitment of $15,000 annually to establish the Lawson Lundell LLP Entrance Scholarship at the UBC Law School, the first full-tuition scholarship supported by a law firm.

US Canada Cross-Border Tax: When to Worry About Canada

These days many US businesses are looking north to Canada for new markets. This paper discusses when a US business needs to worry about the Canadian tax system. The short answer comes from some of the oldest provisions in the Income Tax Act. US businesses need to worry about Canadian tax when they have a physical presence in Canada.

Labour & Employment Bulletin: Minimum Wage Increase and Changes to Temporary Foreign Worker Regulations

This bulletin provides details on the recent minimum wage announcement in BC. This bulletin also discusses the recent changes to temporary foreign worker regulations that come into force on April 1, 2011.