In October 2012, the British Columbia Law Institute (BCLI) began
a project on bringing forth recommendations for a Franchise Act for
British Columbia. So far, five of the 10 provinces in Canada have
franchise legislation. Provinces that have enacted franchise
legislation are: Alberta, Ontario, New Brunswick, Prince Edward
Island, and most recently, Manitoba. This leaves British Columbia
as the most populated province in Canada that has yet to put
franchise legislation in place. BCLI has stated that it will be
publishing a consultation paper with tentative recommendations in
the near future. After public consultation, BCLI will be producing
a report with final recommendations and draft legislation. Len
Polsky of our Vancouver office has been consulted by BCLI in
connection with the potential British Columbia franchise
According to the Canadian Bar Association's "An Agenda
for Justice" issued on February 5, 2013, a Franchise Act for
British Columbia would fairly balance the interests of both
franchisors and franchisees and would provide protection to small
business franchises. According to the report, the quick
implementation of a Franchise Act for British Columbia would be a
low-cost or no-cost legislative reform that could provide certainty
In a press release issued by the British Columbia
Branch of the Canadian Bar Association (CBABC) on February 5, 2013,
President Kerry Simmons called on all candidates in the next
provincial election to support the platform document stating,
"Everyone who seeks public office should be asked what they
and their party will do to protect the ability of families,
communities and businesses to prevent and resolve legal issues in a
fair, timely and effective way."
If British Columbia enacts a Franchise Act, it will be the sixth
province in Canada to do so.
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