January 5, 2021
Bill 118, the Occupiers' Liability Amendment Act, was passed at its third reading in the Ontario Legislature on December 3, 2020.

The new law requires anyone who wishes to sue for a slip and fall incident to provide written notice to a property owner, property manager, snow removal contractor or tenant within 60 days of the incident. The previous time period was two years. The written notice must also include the location, date and time of the incident.

The Private Member's Bill introduced in 2019 by Parry Sound-Muskoka MPP Norm Miller had proposed a 10-day notice period for slip and fall claims, which was recently amended by a standing committee due to concerns expressed by lawyers to the review committee.

The passing of the bill into law comes during the midst of an insurance crisis that has seen insurance rates for many snow removal contractors more than triple. Others are unable to even obtain insurance, while some simply can't afford to operate this season.

The passing of the bill will not alleviate the situation altogether, and Miller says he will be calling on government to look at other ways to reduce the high costs of insurance for contractors.