Professional Corporation | Barristers, Solicitors, Notaries Est. 1955
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Updates

Updates

Nov20

Creditor-Proofing Techniques for Your Incorporated Business

Categories // Updates

Whether you’ve built your own business from the ground up or have been tasked with taking over the long-time family business, it would be prudent to ensure the hard-earned assets contained in your business are protected as much as possible from third parties, namely creditors.  Creditor proofing for a business owner means protecting significant business assets from exposure to potential future creditors – that is, from persons who may have legal rights against the business and its property for various reasons (e.g., for money owed). Although the law in Ontario generally prohibits creditor-proofing techniques performed with improper intent, such as those that hinder or impair the rights of existing creditors, it is perfectly acceptable (and highly recommended) to organize your business’ affairs in a way that reduces the risk of the business’ property becoming vulnerable to the claims of future creditors. There are numerous methods of structuring your business to minimize creditor risk that can and should be implemented to safeguard your business’ assets.

Oct20

Implications of Assisting a Child With Buying a Home

Categories // Updates

A combination of high real estate prices and new mortgage rules designed to restrict risky lending have led to an increase in parents opting to assist their children with purchasing their first home. Desperate, cash-strapped millennials looking to finally break into the hot housing market are turning to the "bank of Mom and Dad" in record numbers for the financial help they require. Many times, the parents are helping a child reach the 20 per cent threshold for a downpayment, which could help save them thousands, because they will not need the government-mandated mortgage default insurance. However, there are numerous legal considerations to take into account for both the parents and the child when entering into this sort of home purchasing arrangement.

Sep20

How and Why You Should Keep Your Corporation's Minute Book Up to Date

Categories // Updates

A corporation’s minute book is a story of the corporation’s life from beginning (incorporation) to end (dissolution). Although maintaining a full and complete corporate record is likely the last thing on a business owner’s mind, it can critical and essential that your minute book is updated to acknowledge the current state of affairs of the corporation. Minute books are relied upon by lawyers, accountants, lenders and third party purchasers for various important reasons, and an updated minute book provides certainty in many critical situations. Moreover, a current and accurate minute book is mandated by law.

Aug18

Vendor Take-Back Mortgages: An Alternative Home Financing Route

Categories // Updates

With mortgage interest rates on the rise and the housing market shifting to a more buyer-friendly version, we may begin to notice a resurgence in vendor take-back (VTB) mortgages. Although more commonly used in commercial real estate transactions, a VTB mortgage can used as a creative financing strategy in residential deals as well. Prospective purchasers having trouble securing a mortgage with a traditional lender due to their poor credit or inability to make a large enough downpayment are prime candidates for a VTB mortgage.

Jul03

Getting Out of the Deal: The Buyer's Dilemma

Categories // Updates

The real estate market in these last few months has taken quite the turn - the strong seller's market has subsided and some may even argue that we are entering a buyer's market. One of the significant consequences of this recent and abrupt shift is buyers wanting out of their executed agreements of purchase and sale. Why? They signed such agreements in the hot seller's market (likely sometime before March 2017), but their closings are during this cooler spring/summer, more buyer-friendly market. Accordingly, they believe they've overpaid for such properties, seeing as how similar properties in the area are now listing at much lower prices. They have the classic case of "buyer's remorse". 

Jun06

Buying or Selling Real Estate Privately: Reviewing the Offer

Categories // Updates

Buying or selling real property privately means that a real estate agent or agents are not involved in the process. In today's market, we are seeing more and more of these private deals cross our desks. The obvious benefit for both parties in such private deals is that no real estate commission is payable on the transaction.  As such, buyers can usually negotiate a lower purchase price as sellers do not have to pay any of this commission out of their sale proceeds: it's a win-win.  Nonetheless, in the absence of real estate agents, parties wishing to buy or sell real estate privately should always consult their real estate lawyer before the private offer becomes binding. 

May29

Deposits on New Homes: Know Your Rights and the Risks

Categories // Updates

Like in all agreements of purchase and sale ("APS") for real estate, buyers of new homes are required to provide a deposit or multiple deposits to secure the agreement and as an offer of confidence to the builder that the buyer is serious in completing the deal. The difference in providing deposits towards new homes versus resale homes is that deposits for new homes tend to be larger, especially when buying a pre-construction home. Because of this, and due to the increased risk of the buyer losing its deposit, the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act, administered by Tarion Warranty Corporation ("Tarion"), was created to protect these deposits, up to certain limits. 

May08

Family Cottage Succession: Planning Considerations

Categories // Updates

As many cottage owners will tell you, the personal, emotional and financial commitment involved in owning and maintaining a cottage property can be significant. Passing on such a cottage property to the next generation can also involve similar commitments and concerns. Without proper planning, the succession of a family cottage can become the basis for serious family disputes. Below we outline some important considerations and planning options for cottage succession that every cottage owner should know when partaking in such a succession process.

Apr28

Rolling Over Assets Into Your Incorporated Business

Categories // Updates

Suppose you have been running a business as a sole proprietor - that is, on your own with all the debts being your responsibility in your personal capacity. You have accumulated some valuable assets such as equipment, cash from revenues and goodwill. As your business grows, you decide you want to incorporate the business to benefit from certain tax advantages while also limiting your exposure to personal liability. 

Apr10

Passing on the Family Business: Estate and Tax Planning Strategies

Categories // Updates

A family owned business would typically involve the parent or parents owning and operating the business, as well as the children or other family members possibly offering a helping hand. The parents may want the next generation to continue the business after the parents' deaths. There are many estate and tax planning strategies to consider when contemplating and executing the succession of a private, family-held business.

Mar15

Estate Planning Strategies to Minimize Ontario Estate Administration Tax

Categories // Updates

Ontario estate administration tax (formerly "probate fees") is a tax imposed on the estate of a deceased person, and is paid in order to receive a court order, which under present Ontario court rules is called a “certificate of appointment of estate trustee with a will” (formerly a “grant of letters probate”). This court order certifies that the will of a deceased person is valid and also confirms that the person(s) named as executor(s) in the will of the deceased person has the legal authority to administer the estate. Recent legislation has also imposed a more rigorous reporting regime on anyone applying for and receiving a certificate of appointment of estate trustee, which includes rules regarding complex asset valuations and substantiating the reported asset values.

Mar01

The Non-Binding Letter of Intent

Categories // Updates

The legal documentation that is involved in the purchase or sale of a business, or in other major business transactions, can be complex. To assist with fleshing out the main points of the deal (e.g., transaction structure, price, etc.), many parties in commercial transactions typically enter into a "Letter of Intent" ("LOI") (also referred to as a "Memorandum of Understanding" or "Term Sheet").

Feb17

What is a Shareholders' Agreement and Does my Small Company Need One?

Categories // Updates

When setting up a company with family or friends it is easy to assume that nothing can go wrong in the future. You might assume that because you trust one another you do not need to put in place something like a Shareholders’ Agreement. Hopefully nothing will go wrong in the future. However, even relationships between family members and best friends can fall apart and, if the worst should happen with the business, you could then end up with nothing. Or, you may face the breakdown of a friendship alongside a costly and acrimonious legal dispute related to the business. A fully considered and well drafted Shareholders’ Agreement can act as a safeguard, prevent costly litigation, and give you and your fellow shareholders more protection against these types of scenarios.

 

Feb03

Holding Property as Joint Tenants vs. Tenants in Common

Categories // Updates

There are two ways to own property with more than one person: (a) joint tenancy or (b) tenancy in common. There are important distinctions between these two forms of co-ownership that can lead to very different implications for co-owners. 

Dec01

What You Should Know Before Buying a New Home in Ontario

Categories // Updates

Purchasing a new home is an exciting and enticing endeavour to many people in today's real estate market.  However, it involves complexities and considerations that significantly differ from the purchase of a resale home. The following are 10 factors to consider before purchasing your new home from a builder in Ontario.

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LCOLAW

65 Old Kingston Rd, Ajax, ON L1T 3A5

Tel (905) 683-2741

Email: info@lcolaw.ca