Connecting with the big picture: Understanding the changing rules

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cdao construction act
At the Construction and Design Alliance of Ontario gathering to review the new Ontario Construction Act.

On Monday, I attended a three hour session exploring changes to Ontario’s construction lien and business legislation, where several hundred contractors, architects and consultants gathered to listen to a panel of lawyers dissecting the new law and outlining its implications for the industry.

If you were to describe topic as “dry” you would be understating things — but everyone in the room appreciated its importance; when there are fundamental changes underpinning the industry’s legal structure, you need to know what is happening and how to change your practices and procedures to comply. (And the transitional arrangements, certainly, create some opportunities for mind-boggling confusion. The wise advice of the lawyers: During the transition period, play things conservative and don’t avail yourself of any new advantages or provisions of the new law.)

Periodically legal and regulatory changes create profound marketing and business opportunities. Think back to the late 1970s, when architects, engineers and lawyers were first allowed to properly market their services instead of being restricted to “tombstone” ads.

lawyers cdao event
The legally-minded panel

It’s good to keep things in context; and appreciate how the industry evolves and changes and new rules and processes disrupt established systems and models. Most of the time, you can adapt to the changes; but you certainly need to be aware of them.

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