Not for Profit Law

Reminder: Ontario corporations must keep track of the land in Ontario in which they have an “Ownership Interest”

November 27th, 2018 by Ted Hyland

Deadline – December 10, 2018

In 2015, the Ontario Legislature enacted the Forfeited Corporate Property Act, 2015, which deals with what happens to property, including land and interests in land, which corporations own at the moment that they cease to exist.

Ordinarily, if a corporation owns land (or any property) when it is dissolved, the land “escheats” (is forfeited) to the Crown.  Sometimes – often – the corporation is dissolved because of its failure to make its annual filings, and the dissolution occurs unbeknownst to the owners / directors of the corporation.

As part of imposing some rationalization on keeping track of the land in Ontario that Ontario corporations own, the Forfeited Corporate Property Act, 2015 amended the Business Corporations Act (Ontario) and the Corporations Act (Ontario) to require corporations governed by those statutes to complete and maintain a register of all of their “ownership interests” in land located in Ontario.  (When it comes into effect, the Not‑for‑Profit Corporations Act will also impose this rule on the corporations that it governs; co‑operative corporations, on the other hand, have been spared the obligation to have such a register.) We previously wrote about this in March of 2017.

If your organization has been in existence since before December 10, 2016 and is either a business corporation incorporated under the Business Corporations Act (Ontario) or a non‑profit corporation incorporated under the Corporations Act (Ontario), then it has until this coming December 10th to put such a register in place.
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The Law Society is flirting with the idea of doing away with articling. Should it?

July 26th, 2018 by Celia Chandler

This article was first published on rabble.ca

One hundred thirty-seven — yes, that’s right: 137. And last year, 150!

These are the number of applicants we received for one articling position for the period July 2019 to May 2020. For readers not in law in Ontario, articling is a 10-month work placement under the supervision of a lawyer. Completing articles is a condition to practising law in Ontario.

The competition for securing articles is so intense that the Law Society of Ontario (LSO) has explored alternatives and is flirting with the idea of giving up on articling altogether.

Bad idea. We don’t want to lose an important training ground for progressive lawyers. Our law firm, Iler Campbell LLP, is unusual as a place where young lawyers can gain experience working for non‑profits, charities, co‑ops, social enterprise and the like. We see hiring articling students as an obligation to the legal profession and to the progressive organizations that we serve. Our tagline is “A law firm for those who want to make the world a little bit better.” Articling here and in other like‑minded firms helps build a cadre of advocates for that better world.

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Social finance: Challenges for its legal regulation

June 28th, 2018 by Ted Hyland

This article was first published on rabble.ca.

Last month, the Senate Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology issued a report entitled The Federal Role in a Social Finance Fund. The Committee’s recommendations included the federal government creating and contributing to a national social finance fund. This recommendation, among others from the Committee, aligns with, for example, the social enterprise strategy of the Ontario government.

For all of the optimism percolating through the Senate report and Ontario’s strategy there is the challenge of how to reconcile two dynamics that historically have been opposed: the private interest for profit and the common interest for public benefit. Social finance is about harnessing capital and the forces of the market to solve social problems. It’s about commercializing social, environmental and cultural problems that traditionally were addressed by government as part of an overall goal of wealth redistribution and creation and protection of public goods. Social finance represents a shift: addressing these problems is an opportunity for wealth creation, as well as doing good. Read the rest of this entry

Think your waiver has you covered? It might not.

May 18th, 2018 by Elliot Fonarev

Chances are your organization has dealt with waivers if your services have the potential to create injury or liability to your clients or customers – for example, if you operate sports facilities or provide access to a physical space with potential hazards. If so, a recent decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on the topic of waivers may interest you. It highlights that documents that release liability should be drafted very specifically to make it clear which legal rights are being waived.

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Non-Profits: What you need to know about Bill 154

December 13th, 2017 by Elliot Fonarev

On November 14, Bill 154 received Royal Assent in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.

Among other things, Bill 154 affects legislation governing Ontario non‑profits and charities, namely, the Corporations Act (OCA), Not‑for‑Profit Corporations Act, 2010 (ONCA) and the Charities Accounting Act (CAA). Read the rest of this entry

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL): Federal government suspends the Private Right of Action provisions

June 13th, 2017 by Ted Hyland

Organizations – businesses, non‑profits and charities – are breathing a sigh of relief following the federal government’s decision to suspend indefinitely the coming into force of the provisions of Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) that give persons the right to seek monetary compensation from anyone who has breached the consent rules in CASL and the collection and use of personal information rules in PIPEDA.[1]

Colloquially known as the “private right of action” clauses of CASL, they were slated to come into force on July 1, 2017; the suspension of their coming into force was accomplished by a federal Order‑in‑Council (PC Number: 2017‑0580), which was issued on June 2, 2017.

Among the groups that had lobbied the federal government to put the brakes on the implementation of the private right of action provisions were Imagine Canada and the Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN). Imagine Canada and ONN sent a letter together to the federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Navdeep Bains. The letter, dated February 14, 2017, lays out a number of the principal concerns that the nonprofit and charitable sectors have with CASL generally and with the private right of action specifically.

[1] Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (S.C. 2000, c. 5)