September 26, 2016

The Report of the Construction Lien Act (CLA) Review has now been released by the Ministry of the Attorney General. The Report contains recommendations to amend the CLA and supporting policies to improve payment timelines for subcontractors and ensure accountability for construction owners in major construction projects. AMO will be analysing the report closely for municipal impacts and will communicate with members regarding any areas of concern.

The independent Expert Review of Ontario’s Construction Lien Act was announced before the 2014 Ontario Election.  The announcement was made in response to opposing views of Bill 69, The Prompt Payment Act, a Private Member’s Bill introduced before the Ontario Legislature in 2013 that would have changed payment schedules and contract provisions while making it difficult for municipalities to tie payments to project milestones.  AMO and municipal governments voiced several concerns about the Bill’s approach.  The government subsequently appointed Bruce Reynolds and Sharon Vogel of Borden Ladner Gervais as independent expert panelists to make recommendations to update the CLA.

Today’s report makes recommendations which are aimed at:
  • Modernizing the construction lien and holdback rules
  • Introducing rules around prompt payment
  • Creating a new process to speed up dispute resolution
AMO understands that the Attorney General intends to introduce legislation to enact the report’s recommendations in Spring 2017 after consultation with stakeholders.

AMO will review the report, work with municipalities and other owners, and communicate with members as necessary to represent municipal government interests and take part in the consultations and policy development process.