Granted (2)

Civil Procedure: Foreign Judgments 

H.M.B. Holdings Limited v. Attorney General of Antigua and Barbuda2020 ONCA 12 (39130)
In 2007, Antigua and Barbuda (Antigua), a country comprised of several islands in the Caribbean, expropriated property owned by H.M.B. Holdings Limited (HMB). The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council ordered Antigua to compensate HMB for the expropriation in 2014. In 2016, HMB brought an action in British Columbia to enforce the Privy Council judgment. Antigua did not defend this action and the B.C.S.C. granted default judgment. HMB then brought an application in Ontario under the Reciprocal Enforcement of Judgments Act to recognize the B.C. judgment, which Antigua opposed. The Ontario Superior Court of Justice: application to recognize and enforce foreign judgment in Ontario dismissed; C.A. appeal dismissed. “The application for leave to appeal…is granted with costs in the cause.”

Criminal Law: Trafficking; Sentencing 

Felix v. R., 2019 ABCA 458 (39227)
Mr. Parranto and Mr. Felix each pleaded guilty to two counts of wholesale trafficking in fentanyl and other offences. For the fentanyl trafficking offences, Mr. Parranto received 4-year and 5-year consecutive sentences and Mr. Felix received two 7‑year concurrent sentences. The C.A. set a 9‑year starting point for wholesale trafficking in fentanyl. It held 13‑years concurrent was appropriate for Mr. Felix’s offences but accepted 10-year terms concurrent proposed by Crown counsel and it sentenced Mr. Parranto to two consecutive 7‑year terms. “The motions for extensions of time to serve and file the applications for leave to appeal are granted. The applications for leave to appeal…are granted.”

Dismissed (8)

Civil Procedure in Québec: Motions to Dismiss 

Côté v. Moreau2019 QCCA 1105 (39307)
The Applicant Mr. Côté brought an action in damages against the Respondents Mr. Moreau and A.G. Qué. in connection with his dismissal in 2015. Mr. Moreau and the A.G. applied to have the proceeding dismissed. The Superior Court held Mr. Côté’s action was wrong in law, and it lacked jurisdiction to rule on the action. The application to dismiss for abuse of procedure and lack of jurisdiction was granted. The C.A. unanimously held the application for leave to appeal raised no issue that merited being submitted to it and there was no reviewable error in the Superior Court’s judgment. The appeal was dismissed. “The motion for an extension of time to serve and file the application for leave to appeal is granted. The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed. Côté J. took no part in the judgment.”

Civil Procedure: Limitation Periods 

Dentons Canada LLP v. HOOPP Realty Inc., 2020 ABCA 159 (39233)
HOOPP Realty Inc. entered into a design‑build agreement with a contractor to construct a warehouse. The floor of the warehouse was defective, leading to actions brought against HOOPP and by HOOPP and others against the contractor. The design‑build contract contained what was later held to be a mandatory arbitration clause. Although HOOPP commenced a civil action against the contractor, it did not initiate arbitration within the requisite limitation period. As a result of the decision in Agrium Inc. v. Babcock, 2005 ABCA 82, the claim against the contractor was ultimately dismissed on the basis the proper forum was arbitration and the limitation period had expired.  HOOPP had retained the Dentons defendants for the initial action brought against HOOPP and consulted them on claims against the contractor. When a conflict of interest arose with the Dentons defendants in fall of 2000, HOOPP’s file was transferred to the Emery defendants until the conflict was resolved in 2004.  On October 30, 2009, the contractor advised the Dentons defendants they would be relying on the mandatory arbitration clause to bring an application to dismiss the action. On November 12, 2009, the Dentons defendants advised HOOPP about a potential problem arising from the arbitration clause. HOOPP sued the Emery Jamieson defendants on November 9, 2011, and later brought an action against the Dentons defendants. The Emery Jamieson defendants and the Denton defendants sought summary dismissal of the claims against them.  A master of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench allowed the Emery Jamieson defendants’ application for summary dismissal. By November 4, 2009, the Dentons defendants knew of the possible claim, and their knowledge was imputed to HOOPP. Therefore, HOOPP’s claim against the Emery Jamieson defendants was out of time. Appeals from that result were dismissed by a Judge of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench and by the C.A. The master concluded the claim against the Dentons defendants was multi‑faceted and required expert evidence. He dismissed the Dentons defendants’ application for summary dismissal and HOOPP’s application for declaratory relief. That decision was upheld by a Judge of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench and by the C.A. “The applications for leave to appeal…are dismissed with costs.”

Class Actions in Québec: Municipalities 

Lavallée v. Ville de Sainte-Adèle2019 QCCA 938 (39178)
The Applicant André Lavallée lived in Ville de Sainte‑Adèle, Québec.  Mr. Lavallée filed an application for authorization to institute a class action for $3M in damages on behalf of himself and, as representative plaintiff, a class consisting of any person who was a resident or ratepayer of the municipality at any time during the period between 2005 and 2018. He asserted this amount represented moneys disbursed by the municipality in the pursuit of interests incompatible with its mission and with its residents’ interests. He submitted these public funds had been used for multiple judicial proceedings against four residents of the municipality over a 13‑year period. The Superior Court dismissed the application for authorization to institute a class action. The C.A. granted a motion to dismiss the appeal and dismissed the appeal. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs to the respondent Ville de Sainte-Adèle.”

Criminal Law: Sexual Assault

R. v. Pascal2020 ONCA 287 (39243)
There is a publication ban in this case, in the context of alleged sexual assault. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed.”

Family Law: Tort of Civil Conspiracy 

Novac v. Leitch2020 ONCA 257 (39217)
The Applicants Michael Novac and Nelly Novac are Anthony Novac’s parents. Anthony Novac and the Respondent Jennifer Leitch were married for 15 years. Michael Novac et al brought a motion for summary judgment before the court of first instance to dismiss Ms. Leitch’s claims they had conspired in the sheltering and/or concealing of Anthony Novac’s income and assets to deprive her and the former couple’s children of their support entitlements. The Ontario Superior Court of Justice: Applicants Michael Novac, Nelly Novac and Sonco Group Inc. motion for summary judgment granted, and Respondent’s claims for damages for civil conspiracy dismissed. C.A.: appeal allowed and order granting summary judgment set aside. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Insurance: MVA’s 

Piche v. Saskatchewan Government Insurance2017 SKCA 53 (39239)
Mr. Piche was involved in a MVA near Swift Current, Saskatchewan. He sustained several injuries and suffered aggravation of other pre‑existing injuries. Mr. Piche saw several doctors and made a claim for his injuries to his insurer, Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI). Over the following years, Mr. Piche and SGI disagreed on which medical conditions were caused by the MVA. SGI issued Mr. Piche a letter terminating income replacement benefits and other benefits. Mr. Piche appealed the decision to terminate his benefits to the Automobile Injury Appeal Commission, which proceeded by consent of both parties on the issue of causation alone. The Automobile Injury Appeal Commission unanimously dismissed Mr. Piche’s appeal as did the C.A. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Employment Law: Security Clearances 

Alakozai v. Canada (Attorney General)2019 FCA 316 (39251)
The Applicant Mr. Alakozai, a dual citizen of Canada and Afghanistan who has held various positions within the Canadian federal government both in Canada and abroad, applied for “Enhanced Reliability Status” security clearance, in connection with his application for membership in the RCMP. The RCMP undertook a full security screening process. It found Mr. Alakozai was associated with problematic individuals, as revealed in some of his statements and representations on social media accounts; this suggested he held political ties to Afghanistan that could create a conflict of interest. The RCMP also found Mr. Alakozai was untruthful throughout the screening process. Ultimately, the RCMP denied Mr. Alakozai’s application for Enhanced Reliability Status, concluding he had been involved in behaviours with security or reliability implications — namely, association or contact with individuals involved in criminal activities; and lack of honesty, having provided misleading or false information during the screening process. Mr. Alakozai applied to J.R. the RCMP’s decision. The Fed. Court dismissed Mr. Alakozai’s application concluding the RCMP’s denial decision was reasonable. The Fed. C.A. dismissed Mr. Alakozai’s appeal, concluding the first judge’s analysis and conclusions held no error. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Wills & Estates: Standing 

Wilson v. Adams Estate2020 SKCA 38 (39207)
Ms. Adams, 93, died in 2016. She had never married, had no children, and it was not clear whether she had living relatives. She ran a substantial cattle ranching operation and, at the time of her death, owned a significant amount of property in her name or in the name of her corporation, Adams Acres Ltd. From 1975 until her death, Mr. Wilson worked for her. He alleged they had agreed she would pay him $1,000 monthly to help cover expenses such as gas and the use of his truck and tools, and he would inherit her ranching operation, land, cattle and equipment when she died. He alleged she had told him their agreement had been committed to writing, but no such document was found. Her will, dated 2011, appointed Mr. Staples as her executor and stated she wanted much of her estate distributed to charitable causes, including the Salvation Army. It gave Mr. Staples wide discretion to distribute part of her estate to persons who had been “trustworthy and loyal and helpful” to her in her lifetime. It also said he knew who was and who was not to get a share of the estate. Mr. Wilson was not a named beneficiary of the estate. Shortly after letters probate were granted, Mr. Wilson filed a Statement of Claim against Mr. Staples, personally and as executor, and Adams Acres Ltd. to enforce his alleged agreement with Ms. Adams. Alternately, he claimed the assets of the ranching operation were subject to a constructive trust in his favour. He filed certificates of pending litigation against her land. Mr. Staples sought an order vacating some of the certificates of pending litigation and permitting him to deal with estate assets. Mr. Wilson then applied to have the will declared invalid and the grant of letters probate revoked. In the alternative, he sought to have the will proved in solemn form with respect to whether Ms. Adams had the capacity to make the will. The chambers judge found Mr. Wilson had standing as someone who might be considered “trustworthy and loyal and helpful” to Ms. Adams during her lifetime, and the evidence required a trial. Both Mr. Staples and the Salvation Army appealed. The C.A. held, to establish standing, a person must establish a legal or financial interest. As Mr. Wilson had the same possibility of receiving a gift under clause 4(d) as if it was proved in solemn or in common form, he had no such interest. The appeals were allowed and Mr. Wilson’s cross‑appeal was dismissed. The preservation order was set aside as the executorship was no longer challenged. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Remanded (1)

Employment Law: Termination; Damages 
Manastersky v. RBC Dominion Securities Inc., 2019 ONCA 609 (38788)
Mr. Manastersky was employed by RBC Dominion Securities Inc. in its RBC Capital Partners unit (RBCDS) for 13 years. During his employment, Mr. Manastersky participated in RBCDS profit-sharing plans, also known as carried interest plans (CIP). Mr. Manastersky was terminated without cause and commenced an action against RBCDS, seeking damages for wrongful dismissal. At trial, RBCDS conceded it terminated Mr. Manastersky’s employment without cause. However, the appropriate period of notice, Mr. Manastersky’s entitlements, and whether he mitigated damages were live issues at trial. The trial judge determined a reasonable notice period for termination was 18 months. The trial judge also found Mr. Manastersky was entitled to damages for the lost opportunity to earn profits under the CIP. A majority of the C.A. allowed the appeal, setting aside Mr. Manastersky’s award of damages. “Pursuant to subsection 43(1.1)  of the Supreme Court Act , the case forming the basis of the application for leave to appeal…is remanded to the Court of Appeal for Ontario for disposition in accordance with Matthews v. Ocean Nutrition Canada Ltd., 2020 SCC 26.”