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2020 Proxy Advisory Firm Voting Guidelines: Canadian Highlights

January 22, 2020

In preparation for the upcoming proxy season, issuers should familiarize themselves with the Canadian proxy voting guidelines recently published by Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS) and Glass Lewis & Co. (Glass Lewis), respectively. This bulletin addresses certain topics covered by the ISS benchmark policy recommendations and Glass Lewis’s proxy guidelines and shareholder initiatives guidelines, respectively, in each case for the…

U.S. Releases Draft Guidelines That Could Significantly Impact Vertical Merger Review

January 14, 2020

On January 10, 2020, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division (DOJ) released Draft Vertical Merger Guidelines (Draft Guidelines) for public comment by February 11, 2020. The Draft Guidelines would be the first official guidance from the FTC and DOJ on vertical mergers since the Non-Horizontal Merger Guidelines released in 1984 (1984 Guidelines). KEY TAKEAWAYS…

Proposed Changes to Tax Treatment of Employee Stock Options No Longer Coming into Force January 1, 2020

December 20, 2019

On December 19, 2019, the federal government announced that proposed changes to the tax treatment of employee stock options will not come into force on January 1, 2020. As noted in our previous Blakes Bulletin: Proposed Changes to Stock Option Tax Rules, on June 17, 2019, the federal government proposed changes to the tax treatment of stock options to limit…

Ontario Government Proposes Significant Amendments to Ontario Class Proceedings Act

December 20, 2019

On December 9, 2019, the Attorney General of Ontario introduced Bill 161, the Smarter and Stronger Justice Act, 2019 (Bill 161) which, among other things, proposes a number of changes to the Ontario Class Proceedings Act, 1992 (CPA). Bill 161 follows a recent comprehensive review of the CPA by the Law Commission of Ontario (LCO). The proposed amendments adopt many…

Climate Change Litigation Heats Up: Emerging Trends and Analysis

December 19, 2019

Recently, several Canadian youths aged 10 to 19, filed a lawsuit against the Government of Canada and the Attorney General of Canada over climate change, alleging violations of their rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. On October 25, 2019, the plaintiffs claimed that the release of anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) into the atmosphere is triggering a host…

OSFI Releases Updated Liquidity Principles

December 17, 2019

On December 5, 2019, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) released the final version of the updated Guideline B-6: Liquidity Principles (Guideline). The Guideline applies to banks and federally regulated trust and loan companies (Institutions). It outlines a set of updated liquidity risk management principles that supplement the quantitative liquidity metrics set out in OSFI’s Liquidity Adequacy…

Wrapping Up 2019 with Increased Transparency: Updates on Lobbying Regimes and Conflict of Interest Rules

December 13, 2019

For the last quarter of 2019, certain amendments to the lobbying regime in British Columbia have been proclaimed into force, and changes have been proposed for the lobbying regime and conflict of interest rules in Saskatchewan. Among other things, these upcoming and proposed changes tighten lobbying rules by lowering the annual hourly threshold for registration by in-house lobbyists and adding…

The CRTC Imposes New Obligation on Telecommunications Service Providers to Combat Nuisance Calls

December 12, 2019

Canada’s telecommunications regulator has announced that telecommunications service providers (TSPs) providing voice telecommunications services in Canada must implement a new framework to authenticate and verify caller ID information for IP-based voiced calls. These TSPs will have until September 30, 2020, to implement the Secure Telephone Identity Revisited/Signature-based Handling of Asserted Information Using Tokens framework (STIR/SHAKEN). STIR/SHAKEN is a specific anti-call…

The Little Engine that Couldn’t: SCC Rules on Limitation of Liability for Sale of Ship Engine Parts

December 4, 2019

The Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) recently rendered an important decision on the division of powers between the federal and provincial governments. While that decision was made in the context of Canadian maritime law, it has potentially far-reaching implications for contracts and disputes involving the transportation of goods across borders and the construction of projects under federal jurisdiction. BACKGROUND In…

Corporate Transparency: Which Path Will Quebec Take?

December 3, 2019

In recent years, several countries have undertaken various actions to combat fraud, tax evasion, tax avoidance, money laundering and the financing of criminal activities. Despite the implementation of several measures to strengthen corporate transparency, the Quebec government is still seeking solutions to counter these schemes. It is in this context that, in October 2019, Quebec’s Ministry of Finance published a…