Further to the article we published on February 18, 2022 titled Federal government invokes the Emergencies Act: Implications for insurers in Canada, on February 23, 2022, the Federal government, announced that it revoked (the Revocation) its declaration (the Declaration), made on February 14, 2022, of a “public order emergency” under the Emergencies Act (Canada) (the Emergencies Act). The Declaration was originally made in response to protests and civil unrest occurring in Ottawa and at various border crossings in Canada.
The Revocation also terminated certain emergency orders introduced on February 15, 2022 (the Order), which, among other items, created temporary new rules and restrictions applicable to insurers conducting insurance business in Canada.
The Federal government has not released many details regarding the implications of the Revocation. The above announcement was made by Canada’s Prime Minister at a news conference on February 23, 2022 (the News Conference), and the Declaration was formally revoked by a Proclamation made by the Governor General of Canada on the same date.
Below is a list of important updates announced at the News Conference. No publication or written guidance has been provided to date by the Federal government.
- Any offences committed under the Emergencies Act during the period of time during which the Declaration was in force (i.e., between February 14, 2022 and February 23, 2022) will still be subject to prosecution and investigation, where applicable. However, we note that the rules and restrictions under the Orders (as described above) did not come into force until February 15, 2022.
- No comment was provided at the News Conference regarding the treatment of any insurance policies cancelled under the Declaration.
- Financial institutions have begun the process of unfreezing bank accounts frozen in connection with the Declaration. However, where bank accounts where frozen by court orders or legal proceedings in connection with offences committed under the Emergencies Act (while the Declaration were in force) or other legislation, such bank accounts will remain frozen.