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Inside Internal Controls

News and discussion on implementing risk management

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commercial contracts

Evolving employment contract law, political activities and charities

Learn why you need to review your contracts and advocacy practices with Not-for-Profit PolicyPro

As an Executive Director, there are many different areas that need your attention on a daily basis: strategic direction, fundraising, stakeholder engagement, employee and volunteer management, media relations and grant applications, just to name a few.

With all of these factors to manage, keeping up with changes in legal compliance and CRA requirements may not be perceived as a top priority. However, failing to pay attention to compliance can leave your organization vulnerable to the risk of financial penalties and have a negative impact on your reputation.

I want to highlight a couple of recent issues you may want to consider.

 

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Supreme Court of Canada limits the right to appeal commercial arbitral decisions on issues of contractual interpretation

In Sattva Capital Corp. v. Creston Moly Corp., 2014 SCC 53 (Sattva), released August 1, 2014, the Supreme Court of Canada overturned the historical approach and held that contractual interpretation involves questions of mixed fact and law rather than pure questions of law. As a result, leave to appeal from an arbitral award interpreting a contract should not have been granted. The Court also reaffirmed the contextual approach to contractual interpretation and explained the role of surrounding circumstances in contractual interpretation.

 

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Contract administration – beyond the handshake agreement

Unfortunately, it is not unusual for not-for-profit organizations to find they have entered into a contractual relationship that did not receive the required level of oversight, discussion and approval. Such contracts dramatically increase the risk of harm to your organization.

 

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