April 25, 2002
FREDERICTON (CNB) -- Public consultations are being held on the issue of limited liability partnerships (LLPs), Business New Brunswick Minister Norm Betts, Minister responsible for Service New Brunswick, announced today.
"This type of legislation aimed at modernizing business practices has been enacted in most US States and is gradually being introduced throughout Canada," Betts said. "Over the next few months, we want to hear from New Brunswickers on this important economic issue."
Limited liability partnership (LLP) legislation is rapidly gaining favour throughout North America. In Canada, a 1998 report of the Senate Committee on Banking Trade and Commerce urged provinces to allow for limited liability partnerships. Since then, Ontario, Alberta and Saskatchewan have brought in legislation to establish LLPs.
"Each of these jurisdictions has recognized the benefits that would flow from having this modern business model in place," Betts said.
A limited liability partnership can be distinguished from a general partnership in that, under an LLP, when someone sues for damages based on the negligence or wrongful act of a partner, such as a doctor, lawyer or accountant, the plaintiff can enforce a judgment against only the partnership assets and the personal assets of the negligent partner.
"If this scenario happened under the general partnerships we have today, not only are the partnership assets at stake, but in fact, the personal assets of all partners, not just the negligent partner, would be at stake," Betts added.
"Our goal in consulting New Brunswickers is two-fold," Betts said. "We want to hear from them on whether this government should enact LLP legislation and, if so, what legislative provisions there should be to govern the creation and operation of LLPs in New Brunswick."
The discussion document is available through the 36 Service New Brunswick Service Centres and can be ordered by calling SNB Teleservices toll free at 1-888-762-8600.
New Brunswickers can also submit their comments online. Interested persons can visit SNB Online at http://www.snb.ca/, where they can both read the discussion document and provide their comments on the Web site. "This is our first totally interactive consultation and is a significant step forward in both e-government and e-democracy," Betts said.
All interested persons are invited to provide input on this matter and, if requested, meetings will be arranged with stakeholder groups who wish to receive more information or wish to make a formal brief.
MEDIA CONTACT: Brent Staeben, director of planning, Service New Brunswick, 506-444-2207.