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Executive Compensation and Incentive Plans


Whether you are setting up a plan for senior executives only or your entire Canadian workforce, we assist in plan design and drafting that reflects current Canadian employment law, income tax regime and industry best practices. That includes cash incentive plans for the near, medium or long term and equity incentive plans for public and private corporations and other business entities. 

We draw on our diverse expertise in the employment, tax, and securities law aspects of incentive plans and executive compensation. For public companies, that includes advice on current Canadian disclosure and approval requirements. 

For U.S. and multinational companies, we adapt existing plans for Canadian employees or advise on alternate arrangements tailored to Canadian employment laws and income tax provisions, as is most appropriate in the circumstances. Plans designed for other jurisdictions often do not reflect the Canadian employment law and income tax regime, which can result in unfortunate surprises. We have experience adapting plans to the Canadian context or proposing alternate structures that better suit the objectives for employees in Canada.

Our Clients

We act for Canadian, U.S. and multinational companies, creating arrangements tailored to Canadian employment laws and tax provisions and providing advice on current disclosure and approval requirements.

Our Expertise

  • Designing and drafting plans or arrangements for cash and equity incentives, whether for one, a few or many employees.  We assist clients to best meet their employment objectives within the Canadian employment and tax regimes.
  • Employment and tax advice on existing incentive plans or arrangements and amendments.  Too often, we see plans that fail to meet Canadian legal requirements as intended, which can change an incentive plan into an nightmare for an employer and/or employee.
  • Adapting non-Canadian plans and arrangements for employees in Canada, in light of the Canadian employment laws, income tax regime and other elements of Canadian law.  In particular, we regularly assist U.S. companies with longstanding U.S. plans that need modification to achieve the same objectives for Canadian employees.
  • Assisting in meeting Canadian disclosure and approval requirements for plans of public companies.  Our experienced securities law group regularly assists public companies to meet the extensive disclosure requirements for executive compensation.
  • Advising on compensation and other issues regarding executives transferring into Canada on a permanent or temporary basis.
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