Access key materials to help you understand, prepare and respond quickly to the significant challenges posed by COVID-19 in Canada. This page is updated daily. 

To visit our Global COVID-19 Resource Centre, please click here.


WEBINAR: The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook
May 29, 2020

Join us on Friday, May 29 for our fourth COVID-19 webinar session as we discuss the challenges Canadian employers will face when bringing employees back into the workplace while maintaining appropriate safety.

This webinar will provide practical guidance that employers can draw upon and adapt for their specific workplaces. Our speakers will break down common employment-related issues employers should consider when: Planning a reopening playbook; Planning the return to work process; Implementing the return to work process; and Operating in a changed environment.
To view a recording of the webinar, click here.

Individual Tax Residency in Canada- Impact of COVID-19 ​
May 28, 2020

Canada Revenue Agency has finally released some guidance on the Canadian income tax status of non-resident individuals who are present in Canada as a result of COVID-19 related travel restrictions.
Learn more.

The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook (Part 4)
May 28, 2020

In this last installment of The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook, we identify common challenges employers faced at the onset of the pandemic and provide guidance on how employers can be better prepared to minimize the impact of our changed environment or a subsequent wave of COVID-19.
Learn more.

The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook (Part 3)
May 26, 2020

In this installment of The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook we discuss complex legal and practical considerations to return workforces to “COVID-prepared” workplaces.
Learn more.

Rent Relief is Available for Small Business Tenants Through the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Portal
May 26, 2020

At the end of April, the Canadian federal government announced that rent relief was on the way for small business tenants impacted by COVID-19 closures in the form of the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (“CECRA”) program. CECRA is a joint initiative between federal and provincial governments to provide small business tenants with rent relief for April, May and June, 2020.
Learn more.

The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook (Part 2)
May 22, 2020

This installment of The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook will address key issues employers should consider when planning to reopen physical workspaces.
Learn more.

The Canadian Employers’ Reopening Playbook (Part 1)
May 21, 2020

This series will break down common employment-related issues to consider when: Planning the return to work process; Implementing the return to work process; and Operating in a changed environment.
Learn more.

CSA Extends Temporary Blanket Relief from Certain Regulatory Requirements and Delivery Obligations
May 21, 2020

On May 20, 2020, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) published additional measures that provide investment funds and non-investment fund issuers with temporary relief from certain regulatory filings and delivery obligations. These have been implemented across Canadian jurisdictions through harmonized local blanket orders (including Ontario Instrument 51-505 and Ontario Instrument 81-505).
Learn more.

Global Restructuring and Insolvency Guide
May 14, 2020

This Guide has been compiled by Baker McKenzie lawyers experienced in the practical aspects of restructuring and insolvency. It should provide you with a helpful reference tool to understand the numerous insolvency and restructuring regimes that may affect your business. In this edition, we also answer the questions we most frequently receive regarding the impact of COVID-19 on the insolvency landscape.
Click here to open the Canada section of the Guide.

Update #3: COVID-19 and Canadian Intellectual Property
May 8, 2020

The purpose of this Update #3, and future updates as the COVID-19 situation evolves, is to provide affected parties with timely information about how COVID-19 is impacting Canadian intellectual property. This Update covers updated guidance from: the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO); the Federal Court of Appeal; and the Federal Court.
Learn more.

Competitor Collaborations during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Almost Business as Usual
May 4, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented shock to the global economy, prompting, among other things, competition law enforcers to reassess how they approach competitor collaborations. In particular, many regulatory agencies have implemented policies aimed at assisting businesses in their efforts to mitigate supply chain disruptions and other effects while ensuring that essential goods and services are available to those who need them.
Learn more.

CSA Grants Temporary Blanket Relief from Deadlines for Sending Securityholder Materials including Executive Compensation Disclosure
May 4, 2020

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) announced on May 1, 2020 that as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, they are providing reporting issuers temporary blanket relief until December 31, 2020 from certain continuous disclosure obligations which are generally tied to the filing and sending of materials for annual general meetings (AGMs). These measures are in addition to prior changes to AGM requirements detailed in our Client Alert published on March 20, 2020 (available here)
Learn more.

Ontario Releases Safety Guidelines for Reopening to Protect Public from COVID-19
May 1, 2020

As Ontario prepares to reopen the economy, the province is providing employers with safety guidelines to protect workers, customers, and the general public from COVID-19. The guidelines provide practical recommendations so that employers reopen in a safe and responsible way.
Learn more.

Ontario Government Provides Pandemic Payments to Frontline Workers
April 29, 2020

On April 25, 2020, the Ontario government announced that it is providing frontline staff with a temporary pandemic payment. The payment compensates frontline workers for dedication, long hours, and increased risk while working to contain the COVID-19 outbreak.
Learn more.

Business Interruption Insurance and the COVID-19 Pandemic
April 23, 2020

The availability of business interruption insurance to cover losses sustained as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic will no doubt occupy the Courts in the period ahead. Business owners who cannot access or use their premises due to the Pandemic would be well advised to promptly have counsel consider the specific terms of any insurance policies in place.
Learn more.

COVID-19: A Global Review of Healthcare and Life Sciences Industry Issues
April 23, 2020

The increase in legal and regulatory measures arising out of COVID-19 is truly proportional to the growth of the pandemic itself. Although the measures affect all industries, many of these have direct implications and relevance on the healthcare and life sciences sectors. While some industries and services are forced to shut down, companies in the healthcare and life sciences ambit are pushed to work even harder, innovate faster, collaborate and be resilient at an unprecedented pace.
Find Canada specific information starting on page 140 of the report. Learn more.

Canadian Government Announces Increased Scrutiny of Foreign Investment Due to COVID-19
April 21, 2020

As the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions continues to evolve, the Canadian government, consistent with other governments around the world, has announced an enhanced policy for the regulation of certain foreign investments.

Effective immediately, the policy applies to investments of any value related to public health or critical goods and services, or by state-owned enterprises or private investors subject to foreign government influence.
Learn more.

OSC Temporarily Waives All Late Fees For Market Participants
April 17, 2020

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is providing temporary relief to market participants by waiving all late fees that accumulate between April 17, 2020 and June 1, 2020. This announcement follows the granting of blanket exemptive relief by the OSC, which is further described here. No late fees accrue for qualifying market participants availing themselves of such blanket relief by meeting the new extended filing deadlines.
Learn more.

WEBINAR: What Canadian Employers Need to Know – The New Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (Session 3)
April 17, 2020

On April 11, 2020, the federal government passed Bill C-14, amending the Income Tax Act to create the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. The subsidy provides financial support to eligible employers for wages paid to eligible employees for the period from March 15, 2020 to June 6, 2020.

Join our speakers Jeremy Hann, Stephanie Dewey and Jonathan Cocker as our Employment and Compensation and Tax Groups partner to explore some of the details of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and also answer some burning practical questions that have arisen along with the new legislation.
To view a recording of the webinar, click here.

Force Majeure Tracker
April 16, 2020

This guide has been prepared to address the substantial business and operational disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the unexpected nature of the outbreak, parties to commercial contracts may seek to invoke force majeure or similar legal concepts to excuse delay or non-performance. This guide gives a high-level comparative analysis of force majeure in 28 jurisdictions including Canada, together with alternative remedies that may apply depending on the governing law of the relevant contracts. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact our practitioners listed throughout the document.
Learn more.

Update #2: COVID-19 and Canadian Intellectual Property
April 16, 2020

Last week, we released our first update, which can be found here.

The purpose of this update, and future updates as the COVID-19 situation evolves, is to provide affected parties with timely information about how COVID-19 is impacting Canadian intellectual property.
Learn more.

COVID-19: Government Intervention Schemes Guide
April 15, 2020

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe.
Find Canada specific information starting on page 68 of the report. Learn more.

Sending Email and Text Messages in a Time of Crisis: Staying CASL Compliant Through the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond
April 15, 2020

During these unprecedented times, most businesses are faced with tough decisions as to whether to temporarily stop operations (e.g., because a state of emergency has been declared and they do not qualify as essential), switch to different business models or, if they remain open, implement new procedures to keep employees and the general public safe. Staying connected with one’s customers and suppliers has now become even more important and most businesses have been providing frequent e-mail and text message updates regarding the state of their operations.
Learn more.

COVID-19: Canadian Federal Government’s Credit Access Measures
April 15, 2020

On March 13, 2020, the Government of Canada announced its COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. Among the various measures to support businesses laid out in the Economic Response Plan are two credit access programs to facilitate extraordinary lending measures to Canadian businesses: the Business Credit Availability Program and the Canada Emergency Business Account. Both programs are to be accessed through the Canadian financial institution that is the primary lender to the business. Additional details regarding these programs are expected to continue to be provided.
Learn more.

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Oil & Gas Industry
April 14, 2020

Many participants in the oil and gas industry will have experienced déjà vu as oil prices have once again crashed, this time due to the demand destruction associated with COVID-19 and the price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia.

What path lies ahead for the industry in the coming months and years? In this alert, we set out a few thoughts (and some questions) to help oil and gas companies navigate the current landscape.
Learn more.

Distressed M&A – A Road Map for Potential Buyers of Distressed Businesses in Section 363 Bankruptcy Sales
April 8, 2020

The current COVID-19 market environment presents unique circumstances to companies and investors who may, as a result of the tumultuous markets and the financial and personal effects of COVID-19, have opportunities to acquire distressed businesses at potentially depressed prices. Particularly in this market environment, though, one or more of the following scenarios may apply.
Learn more.

Special Report: COVID-19: Impact on (the Other) TP
April 7, 2020

The impact of COVID-19 has been profound. Companies are facing disruptions to supply chains, customer demand, operations and output, and are being confronted with liquidity concerns. In many cases, governments across the world have announced tax provisions and other programs to dampen economic hardships and free much needed cash resources.

We invite you to read our Special Report, COVID-19: Impact on (the Other) TP, which Baker McKenzie has produced in partnership with Bloomberg Tax and Accounting. This report identifies the most critical transfer pricing issues companies should be analyzing now.
Learn more.

COVID-19 and Canadian Intellectual Property
April 6, 2020

The virus termed “COVID-19” by the World Health Organization (WHO) reached the shores of Canada in March, after sweeping through Asia and Europe.

Canada’s governments, federal and sub-national, are taking extraordinary measures to try to contain the spread of COVID-19, and, as a result, business is not as usually in Canada – including services from the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) and the Courts.
Learn more.

Federal Government Plans to Create Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
April 4, 2020

On April 1, 2020, the Canadian government provided further details about its plan to help Canadian employers by providing a 3-month, 75% wage subsidy, retroactive to March 15, 2020.

Parliament will likely soon be recalled to consider, debate, and pass legislation to create the wage subsidy program. For now, the preliminary plan for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy is as follows.
Learn more.

Pricing Goods and Services in the Time of COVID-19: Canadian Government Measures Against Price-Gouging
April 3, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, in addition to responding to government closure orders, many retailers and their suppliers are grappling with the impact on supply chains, and corresponding implications for pricing of products and services to consumers. Given spikes in demand and some consumers’ willingness to pay any price for personal hygiene and safety products in particular, some retailers have taken advantage of the situation by drastically increasing the price of these and other products and services, leading to calls for government to take action to protect consumers.
Learn more.

COVID-19 Global Employer Guide
April 3, 2020

Our Global Employment and Compensation Team is pleased to provide you with this global guide to 11 key issues facing employers amid the current COVID-19 pandemic. This guide covers 42 jurisdictions across the globe and deals with some of the most pressing issues employers are currently faced with, including the latest country updates from the past couple of days.
For Canada-specific information, refer to the Canada section (p. 135-138). Learn more.

IIROC announces COVID-19 Related Exemptions from IIROC Rules
April 2, 2020

On March 31, 2020, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) approved exemptive relief relating to hardships dealer members are experiencing in complying with IIROC Dealer Member Rules (DMRs). The relief relates to client document approvals, timelines for reporting, audit procedures, pre-approval requirements and supervision requirements, among others.
Learn more.

WEBINAR – COVID-19: What Canadian Employers Need to Know (Session 2)
April 2, 2020

As news on COVID-19 develops minute-by-minute around the globe, Baker McKenzie’s Employment and Compensation practice remains at the forefront of employment legal guidance.

In this webinar series, our team will help you understand your obligations and provide practical advice on employment law and immigration issues. Join us for our next session where lawyers Kevin Coon, Mark Ellis, Jordan Kirkness, Jeremy Hann, Jennifer Bernardo and Claire-Marie Colantuoni will address the latest developments to help you navigate the global COVID-19 crisis.
To view a recording of the webinar, click here.

2020 Ontario Fiscal Update and Federal / Quebec Sales Tax Updates
March 30, 2020

The Province of Ontario announced a fiscal update on March 25, 2020. In addition to numerous personal relief measures and increased funding for health care resources, the following measures in response to COVID-19 in support of businesses are notable.
Learn more.

The Law of E-Signatures in the United States and Canada
March 30, 2020

The first modern electronic signature (or “e-signature”) laws are now 20 years old and in dire need of an upgrade. Nevertheless, in this article, we provide a high-level summary of the laws in place in the US and Canada that deal with electronic signatures (or “e-signatures”) and electronic records. This article accompanies another article titled “How to Execute Contracts Electronically While Working From Home” which provides practical guidelines for ensuring the transactions you conclude from home are valid and enforceable.
Learn more.

How to Execute Contracts Electronically While Working From Home
March 30, 2020

Nearly every large business in North America has implemented some form of “work-from-home” procedure in response to the COVID-19 health crisis. Under current circumstances, where large swaths of the business world are adapting to a remote work environment, people negotiating deals from their home offices are faced with the question of how to make sure the contracts they sign electronically are legally binding.
Learn more.

WEBINAR – COVID-19: What Canadian Employers Need to Know
March 26, 2020

As news on the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) develops minute-by-minute around the globe and the outbreak has been officially declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, Baker McKenzie’s Employment and Compensation practice remains at the forefront of employment legal guidance.

In this timely 1-hour webinar, our lawyers George Avraam, Andrew Shaw, Jennifer Bernardo, Claire-Marie Colantuoni and Stephanie MacIntosh will help you understand your obligations and provide practical advice on employment law and immigration issues, as we navigate the global COVID-19 crisis.
To view a recording of the webinar, click here.

Canadian Tax Measures in Response to COVID-19
March 25, 2020

The Canadian federal, provincial and municipal governments and courts have announced measures to provide relief to taxpayers in light of the impact of the restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19.  Updates from the tax authorities include the extension of certain tax filing and payment deadlines, suspension of most audit activity, postponed budget announcements, and delayed implementation of some previously announced measures. 
Learn more.

Keeping the Lights On During the Coronavirus Pandemic: Lessons from Around the Globe
March 24, 2020

COVID-19 and government responses to the growing pandemic are creating unprecedented and rapidly evolving challenges. In the coming days, businesses will need to adapt quickly to the shifting economic and regulatory landscape.

Here is checklist of considerations that business leaders should take into account as they grapple with the impacts of the pandemic.
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Dealing with COVID-19: Canadian Public Companies Update
March 24, 2020

On March 23, 2020, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and the TMX Group separately announced partial temporary blanket relief. These announcements are in addition to measures already put in place by Canadian financial regulators and stock exchanges as a result of COVID-19.
Learn more.

Restrictions on Travel to Canada due to the COVID-19 Pandemic
March 21, 2020

On March 18, 2020, the Canadian and US governments announced that the Canada-US border will be closing to all non-essential travel between Canada and the USA, such as travel for tourism or recreation. These border restrictions took effect on March 21, 2020, and will be in place for at least 30 days. Both governments have indicated that today’s announcement is not intended to restrict commerce and trade. Cross-border entry will continue to be permitted to maintain essential services and supply chain processes.
Learn more.

CSA Releases Guidance on Annual General Meetings During COVID-19 Outbreak
March 20, 2020

Further to the measures detailed in our Client Alert published earlier this week (available here), the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) announced on March 20, 2020 that they are providing reporting issuers additional flexibility to change the date, time or location of an in-person annual general meeting (AGM), or to hold virtual or hybrid AGMs.
Learn more.

Dealing with COVID-19: What Now for US and Canadian Public Companies?
March 19, 2020

In response to the outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), US and Canadian securities regulators have taken actions and provided guidance to facilitate the public company annual shareholder meeting process and to provide limited relief for public companies unable to meet filing deadlines due to COVID-19.
Learn more.

Federal Government Restricts Border COVID-19 Update: Federal Government Restricts Border Crossings and Announces Measures to Assist Canadian Employers and Employees
March 19, 2020

Below is a summary of the employment-related measures that have been confirmed so far. This is a rapidly evolving situation and we anticipate further changes and clarifications in the coming days. We are monitoring the situation closely, and will continue to communicate updates as soon as they become available.
Learn more.

Update on COVID-19: Impact on the Workplace in Ontario
March 18, 2020

The Government of Ontario declared a province-wide state of emergency in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19.  This will impact employers and employees.
Employers are recommended to issue a temporary layoff to impacted employees, complete the Record of Employment and indicate the reason as “lack of work due to Emergency Decree and COVID 19”. This will allow employees to receive Employment Insurance.
Learn more.

Can a Party be Excused from Contract Obligations by Citing the COVID-19 Pandemic?
March 16, 2020

For companies that are considering issuing a force majeure notice, or those anticipating that their contractual counterparties may do so, our team from the Litigation & Government Enforcement Practice Group provides answers to key questions on how these types of clauses are treated by Canadian courts (excluding Quebec).
Learn more.