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Ontario Government Set To Review Construction Lien Act

Web posted on March 31, 2014

Ontario is taking action to support a strong construction industry by committing to review the Construction Lien Act. The government is responding to feedback from public hearings on Bill 69, the Prompt Payment Act, which identified a need to close gaps in Ontario's construction laws in order to better protect large and small members of the construction sector.

Enacted in 1983, Ontario's Construction Lien Act sets out a complex system of rights and trust provisions to provide financial protection to construction suppliers and landowners, while working to balance the interests of the many other parties to a construction project.

"Our government supports a strong and flourishing construction industry. Receiving payment in a timely way is an important part of business. We know it is a concern to those working in the construction industry. I want to thank MPP Steven Del Duca for raising the profile of this important issue and I'm pleased that this review will give us the opportunity to find practical, equitable solutions to address gaps in our construction law framework." Glen Murray, Minister of Infrastructure.

An independent review of the Construction Lien Act will look at concerns raised by the construction industry, including:
--> reducing the financial risks companies face when they are not paid for services on time
--> making sure payment risk is distributed fairly among all industry participants
--> finding ways to ensure that companies pay for services and supplies on time.

Currently, the act does not deal with payment of money owed from one party to another, or what to do when payments are late. The review will be led by an independent third party and begin in spring 2014.

"Our government has heard from many in the construction industry that it is time to modernize this law. We agree. My first step will be to reach out to industry members large and small to help us find the right process for a thorough review of the act, with a view to introducing legislation before the end of the year, if needed. I look forward to getting the review of this important legislation underway as quickly as possible." Madeleine Meilleur, Attorney General.

Ensuring prompt payment and fairness in the construction industry is part of Ontario's economic plan that is creating jobs for today and tomorrow. The comprehensive plan and its six priorities focus on Ontario's greatest strengths -- its people and strategic partnerships.

A review of the Construction Lien Act will engage with the broad diversity of participants in the sector, including owners from the private and public sectors, architects, engineers, legal and other building professionals, the financial sector, the National Trade Contractors Coalition of Canada (NTCCC), the Ontario General Contractors Association (OGCA), large general contractors, the Council of Ontario Construction Associations (COCA), the Ontario Road Builders Association (ORBA), Infrastructure Ontario and the Provincial Building Trades.


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