News release

Subcontractors to Receive Full Pay Sooner

Subcontractors will be able to receive full pay sooner for their work on long-term building projects, thanks to amendments introduced today, May 6, to the Builders' Lien Act.

The amendments will allow owners and contractors to release holdback money to subcontractors, as stages of the project are complete.

"Subcontractors who finish their work early in the project, like excavators and those who pour foundations, are waiting years to be paid in full," said Justice Minister Ross Landry. "They are small business owners and every little bit counts.

"These amendments will ensure that plumbers, electricians, drywallers and other subcontractors can be paid in full for the work they have done, without having to wait until the project is complete."

Currently, commercial builders hold back 10 per cent of the total price. General contractors and others who hire workers must do the same. When tradespeople complete their work, they are paid 90 per cent of what they are owed, but they can't get the remaining 10 per cent until the project is complete.

"Our industry has been asking for changes and we are pleased to see these amendments introduced today," said Construction Association of Nova Scotia president Duncan Williams.

"These changes bring Nova Scotia law in line with other provinces, and will improve the general business environment for construction contractors."

The Law Reform Commission recommended these amendments in a March 2013 report.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Subcontractors will be able to receive full pay sooner for their work on long-term building projects, thanks to amendments introduced today (May 6th) to the Builders' Lien Act.

Currently, commercial builders hold back 10 per cent of the total price of a project. General contractors and others who hire workers must do the same. When tradespeople complete their work, they are paid 90 per cent of what they are owed, but they can't get the remaining 10 per cent until the project is complete.

The amendments will allow owners and contractors to release holdback money to subcontractors, as stages of the project are complete.

-30-

Media Contact:

Megan Tonet
Department of Justice 902-424-3313 E-mail: