Canadian lawyers take new look at due diligence

Author: | Published: 1 Jun 2005

Despite having avoided the kind of corporate disasters that spurred US regulators into action in recent years, Canada has not been immune to scandal. The country also shares enough ties with its neighbour that Canadian regulators, and in turn corporate counsel and their clients, have been forced to ask themselves how they should respond to the US wave of reforms.

A year of rulemaking has provided some answers, if not to everyone's satisfaction. With the head of Canada's most powerful securities regulator due to step down at the end of June, just as the comment period closes on its most controversial reforms of the post-Enron era, it remains to be seen how far Canada will be able and willing to forge its own path on regulatory reform.

Its ability to do so is limited by economics, politics and culture. Uniquely, Canadian companies can in many cases issue registered securities...