On March 5, 2015, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (‘CRTC’) issued the first Notice of Violation under Canada’s anti-spam law (‘CASL’). The Notice of Violation was issued to Compu-Finder for sending commercial electronic messages (‘CEMs’) without the recipients’ consent and with an ineffective unsubscribe mechanism. The Notice of Violation includes a $1.1 million administrative monetary penalty.
The Supreme Court of Canada recently released a ground-breaking decision in Bhasin v. Hrynew. While the Court viewed the decision as a modest, incremental step, it will have a significant impact on contractual law in Canada going forward. The Supreme Court recognized a new general organizing principle of good faith in Canadian common law. Underlying this principle is a duty of honesty in contractual performance. Justice Cromwell, writing for a unanimous Court noted that this change will increase commercial certainty.
It is common knowledge that a company’s employees are the key to its success. It is therefore imperative that employers engage in thorough background checks before hiring someone. With an effective vetting process, the employer can considerably reduce the potential of any ‘surprises’ arising in the future. Overstated experience, false references and erroneous qualifications can all come back to haunt an employer who does not take the time to properly vet its candidates.
In a recent decision, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld a lower court decision to release private communications gathered in Anti-competition criminal proceedings in the context of a parallel class action. As a result, in appropriate circumstances electronic surveillance evidence gathered in the context of criminal or quasi-criminal proceedings can be compellable in parallel civil proceedings.
If you’re entering into a business relationship with another party, it’s often best to set out the details advance. Regardless of the corporate vehicle you choose – partnership, joint venture, business corporation or other – an agreement can go a long way in securing the proper functioning of that relationship. One type of clause to consider including is a buy-sell provision, commonly referred to as a ‘shotgun clause’.
Businesses invest substantial amounts of time and money in marketing campaigns to inform the public about their brand and the product or service with which it is associated. The profitability of a business depends to a great extent on the ability of its owners to properly guard and protect its sensitive information from disclosure to competitors. How can a business balance the need to disclose sensitive information to others with ensuring that such information is kept confidential and retains its protected status? One important step is to have confidentiality agreements with employees, consultants or other parties to whom sensitive information is provided that properly define the proprietary information that is covered.
Nelligan O’Brien Payne, in collaboration with Collins Barrow Ottawa and RBC Royal Bank, will be hosting our seventh annual Not-for-Profit Sector LAB (Legal, Accounting, Banking) Update. This event will be held on Thursday, November 27, 2014, at the Centurion Conference Centre, located at 170 Colonnade Road from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM.
In our information era, electronic communications have, in many cases, changed the face of business. Almost anyone can set up a business doing – and selling – what they know, from home. Yet the typical tax deductions associated with a traditional business model are not as easily applied to business-owners working out of their homes. If this is you, it is important to know when and what you can and cannot deduct to ensure you’re maximizing any potential tax benefits, while minimizing any liabilities or future expenses for improper deductions.
Bitcoins have taken center stage in recent years as a new form of online currency. Originally associated with illicit sales of contraband on the ‘deep web’, Bitcoins have gained legitimacy in recent times as a form of valid currency. Bitcoins are generated by computers solving a complex mathematical algorithm to produce a single ‘coin’. Just like any other currency, a Bitcoin is ascribed a value based on its perceived worth. Whether digital currencies have any staying power remains to be seen, but for now they’re on everyone’s mind.
An interesting decision involving the ‘interest stops rule’ arising out of the Nortel litigation was rendered by Justice Newbould in August. In a thorough analysis, Justice Newbould concluded that the interest stops rule can be applied in Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (‘CCAA’) proceedings, and that it should apply in the Nortel case.