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Legal Blog: Covid-19

Jun
08
2020

Susanne Balpataky’s Article: “COVID-19 – The Black Swan” on MBOT Magazine

Susanne Balpataky, as MBOT Chair 2020, wrote MBOT Magazine’s opening message for its spring 2020 edition. In a hopeful tone, Susanne reminds Mississauga’s thriving business community of their resilience and MBOT’s role in supporting them through this difficult time. In her message, Susanne also highlights that COVID-19 might have come unexpectedly, but we must remain positive that we will emerge stronger than ever.

Screenshot of Susanne's article in MBOT Magazine.

Read Susanne’s article here.

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Apr
27
2020

Allison Speigel Addressing Issues for Lawyers During the Lockdown – CPD

On April 16, 2020 Allison Speigel, partner at Speigel Nichols Fox LLP, co-chaired the Ontario Bar Association’s CPD entitled “Maintaining Your Litigation Practice in a Remote Work Environment”. Allison addressed issues that lawyers might be facing while working under lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Screenshot from The Canadian Bar Association website.

Watch the video here starting at 57’12.

Find out more about the OBA Civil Litigation Virtual Chat Series here.

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Apr
24
2020

Dora Konomi’s Article on Attorney at Work, “How to Stay Productive While Working from Home: 10 Tips that Work for Me”

On April 24, 2020, Dora Konomi, an associate at Speigel Nichols Fox LLP, published a millennial lawyer’s list of working from home tactics. Check out some tips and insights that can make your experience of working from home more productive and pleasant. Amongst other things, Dora suggests creating a routine, getting dressed, and creating an inviting work environment.

Screenshot of Attorney at Work's website with Dora Konomi's article.

Find the full article here.

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Apr
23
2020

Allison Speigel’s Open Letter to the Legal Profession & the Ministry of the Attorney General

On April 23, 2020, Allison Speigel, partner at Speigel Nichols Fox LLP, published an open letter to the legal profession and the Ministry of the Attorney General in Canadian Lawyer Magazine addressing the need for our civil justice system to change. Allison is asking anyone in the legal field to speak up and engage in the conversation. The system is not changing because we are not demanding change loudly enough.

Screenshot from the Canadian Lawyer website with Allison Speigel's letter.

Find the open letter here.

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Apr
22
2020

COVID-19 UPDATE

Posted in Covid-19

Speigel Nichols Fox LLP remains open for business and is operating at full capacity. To help reduce the risks associated with Covid-19, most of our lawyers and staff members are working remotely. Our office, however, remains open with only critical people on site.

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Apr
15
2020

Susanne Balpataky Discusses the “Top 5 Things Employers Need to Know During COVID-19” – Podcast

On April 12, 2020, Susanne Balpataky, a partner at SNF and employment expert, appeared on the radio show, the Doralicious Show for Agape Greek Radio, which aired in Toronto on 1690AM and in Ottawa on 97.9FM. She and Dora Konomi, an associate of SNF and the host of the show, discussed legal considerations for employers during COVID-19, including issues surrounding the laying off of employees, the 75% wage subsidy, constructive dismissals, and much more.

Screenshot from Agape Greek Radio website.

You can find the podcast here.

If you have any questions please contact Susanne at susanne@ontlaw.com.

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Apr
13
2020

Holdback Payment and Limitation – Updated

On April 2, 2020, I notified you that the Ontario government enacted a regulation (73/20) suspending any limitation period for the duration of the emergency (commencing March 16, 2020). This created major problems regarding claims for lien, perfection of actions, and the distribution of holdback funds. I advised: “Accordingly, for the moment, payors cannot safely pay holdback – even assuming that the payors have received the holdback from other payors one rung above them on the construction ladder.”

By order in Council made April 9, 2020, the Ontario government amended O Reg 73/20 by removing its applicability to the Construction Act and its regulations on and after April 16, 2020. By doing so, the government implicitly recognised that O Reg 73/20 did apply to the Construction Act to extend times to preserve and perfect a claim for lien. Accordingly:

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Apr
02
2020

Holdback Payment and Limitation

On March 20, 2020, the Ontario government suspended any limitation period for the duration of the emergency. A copy of that regulation can be found here. This is an example of the law of unintended consequences.

It makes perfect sense for the usual run-of-the-mill limitation period (i.e. commence an action within 2 years of the day that the cause of action arose, subject to discoverability). It does not make sense for the provision of the Construction Act mandating the date upon which a claim for lien must be preserved. This date is crucial to the flow of money on a construction project. Holdback cannot safely be released until after the basic preservation dates for all liens have passed, be it 45 days or 60 days depending on whether the old Act or the new Act applies. If a payor cannot safely pay the holdback – because a construction lien could be registered far beyond the basic preservation date (relying on the extension of that date in accordance with the limitation period suspension), then payors will not pay that holdback; similarly, construction financing will not be forthcoming for the holdback.

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Mar
26
2020

Resources for Contractors Navigating COVID-19

HUB International provides 3 steps you can take as a contractor. Click here to read: COVID-19 Construction Safety Plan Guidance.

An article by Revay and Associates Limited discusses the impact of COVID-19 on construction projects. Click here to read: Proactive documentation and monitoring of the impacts of COVID-19 on construction projects.

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Mar
23
2020

Susanne Balpataky Discusses “Employers & COVID-19”

On March 20, 2020, Susanne Balpataky, a partner at SNF and the Chair of the Mississauga Board of Trade, spoke on Sauga 960 AM with David Wojcik, the President of the Mississauga Board of Trade, about COVID-19 and the workplace.

A screenshot of MBOT's website showing the podcast.

Susanne, who practices employment law, discussed how the pandemic is affecting business owners and answered some of the legal questions with which many employers are now grappling.

You can find the podcast here.

If you are an employer or an employee who might need some direction during the COVID-19 crisis, please contact Susanne at: susanne@ontlaw.com

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