Class Actions: Mareva Injunctions

S.N. v. Robert Gerald Miller, et al., 2024 QCCA (41111)
There is a publication ban in this case, certain information not available to the public, in the context of whether a Mareva injunction can be ordered prior to class action certification/authorization. “The motion to expedite the application for leave to appeal is dismissed. The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs to the respondent Future Electronics Inc. Côté J. took no part in the judgment.”

Corporations: Oppression; Fiduciary Duties

Robert Roppovalente v. T’Shael Danis, 2024 QCCA (40966)
The parties married in 2016 and separated in 2019. They were also directors and 50% shareholders of BCO Group Inc., a company that operated a private members’ spa in Ottawa. The degree of animosity between the parties was high and each alleged that the other had misappropriated funds from the company. Mr. Roppovalente brought an oppression application under the CBCA. He also brought a motion, claiming the Respondent had breached her fiduciary duties as a director by unilaterally causing BCO to lose its right to extend its business lease and entering into a new lease for the same premises. He sought an order imposing a constructive trust on the new lease for the benefit of BCO. He also sought an order of contempt of an interim order. The Applicant’s motion was dismissed. The Court ordered the parties to jointly arrange for a case conference. The Applicant’s application for leave to appeal was dismissed. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs in accordance with the tariff of fees and disbursements set out in Schedule B of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Canada.”

Criminal Law: Inculpatory/Exculpatory Statements

R. v. Bagherzadeh, 2023 ONCA 706 (41071)
The Respondent and friends left a nightclub around closing time, and encountered a group of men they did not know. The two groups got into an argument. The argument turned into a fight. Mr. Cellucci died and Mr. DeAngelis seriously injured. At trial, the Crown introduced statements that the Respondent made to his friends shortly after the incident. On appeal, the Crown acknowledged those statements could be interpreted as admitting he stabbed the victims. However, the Respondent also stated he had acted in defence of his friend Mr. MacDonald (the “mixed statements”). When the statements were admitted, the trial judge instructed the jury that they could rely on the Respondent’s out-of-court statements, including their exculpatory aspect, in deciding the case. The Respondent testified. His evidence was consistent with the mixed statements that had been led by the Crown: he had stabbed the victims in defence of Mr. MacDonald. In her final charge, the trial judge instructed the jury that the exculpatory aspect of the Respondent’s out-of-court statements could not be used for their truth, but that they could have “a bearing on [the Respondent’s] credibility” and were circumstantial evidence that could be considered as to the Respondent’s state of mind. The Respondent was convicted of second degree murder and aggravated assault. The Ont. C.A. allowed the appeal and ordered a new trial. “The motion for an extension of time to serve and file the application for leave is granted. The motion for an extension of time to serve and file the response is granted. The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed.”

Family Law: Abandoned Appeals

Dale James Richardson v. Kimberley Anne Richardson, 2022 SKCA 142 (40542)
Mr. and Ms. Richardson had been involved in ongoing family law proceedings, with numerous orders issued by the Court of King’s Bench of Saskatchewan. Mr. Richardson appealed one of those decisions and the Sask. C.A. dismissed the appeal as abandoned. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed.”

Municipal Law: Bylaws; Non-conforming Uses

Onni Wyndansea Holdings Ltd. v. District of Ucluelet and Nicholas Henderson in his capacity as Building Official, 2023 BCCA 342 (40962)
The Respondent District of Ucluelet adopted bylaws that downzoned land owned by the Applicant, Onni Wyndansea Holdings Ltd. The bylaws, which changed the land to a rural zoning, impeded the Applicant from carrying out a proposed subdivision development project. The Applicant filed a petition in the B.C.S.C. seeking an order quashing the bylaws. Alternatively, the Applicant sought a declaration that its proposed use of the land is a lawful non-conforming use within the meaning of s. 528 of the Local Government Act, and therefore protected from the effect of the rezoning. The chambers judge declined to grant either form of relief, and dismissed the petition. The B.C.C.A. dismissed the Applicant’s appeal. It concluded the chambers judge made no error in her factual conclusion that the bylaws were not enacted in bad faith or for an improper purpose. The chambers judge also did not err in law or fact in concluding that the Applicant did not establish a lawful non-conforming use. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Professions: Vets; Discipline

Dr. Howard Covant v. College of Veterinarians of Ontario, 2023 ONCA 564 (40973)
Dr. Covant was a vet licenced to practice in Ontario, and who owned and operated Bayview Seven Animal Hospital in Richmond Hill. The dispensing of drugs is an integral part of veterinary practice and is regulated by Part III-Drugs. Veterinaries typically obtain drugs from drug manufacturers and wholesalers and dispense them directly to their patients, through their owners. The general rule is that veterinarians may only administer and dispense drugs to their own patients: s. 33(1)(a) of the Regulation. That section was amended in 2015 to allow for an exception, allowing veterinarians to dispense “reasonably limited quantities” to pharmacists or other members to address “temporary shortages”. Dr. Covant was engaged in the purchase and re-sale of veterinary drugs to pharmacists. His re-selling activities were the subject of a hearing before the Respondent’s Disciplinary Committee. He was found to have breached the prohibition against the re-sale of veterinary drugs. This amounted to professional misconduct and penalties and a costs order were imposed against him. His subsequent appeals were dismissed. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Professions: Vets; Discipline

Wenchao Zheng v. Manitoba Veterinary Medical Association, 2023 MBCA 77 (40984)
This Leave arose from the Applicant vet’s treatment of the complainant’s dog for skin and ear infections and how the Applicant dealt with billing. The inquiry panel of the Manitoba Veterinary Medical Association found the Applicant was guilty as charged except for the general charge for professional misconduct, as well as the general charge for lack of knowledge, skill or judgment and the incompetence charge. The sanction decision required the Applicant to complete 32 hours of continuing education on veterinary medicine, practice under the direct supervision of another veterinarian for two years, be subject to random practice audits, reimburse the complainant $321.36, pay a fine of $2,000 and pay costs of $50,000. The Man. C.A. dismissed the appeal subject to the supervision provision being clarified. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Real Property: AFS

6551450 Manitoba Ltd., et al. v. Heather Anne Stewart, 2023 MBCA (40967)
Ms. Stewart entered into an Agreement For Sale of her property to 6551450 Manitoba Ltd. The purchase was conditional on obtaining municipal approval to operate a quarry. Ms. Stewart advanced $600,000 to 6551450 Manitoba Ltd. After the agreement became void for failure to obtain municipal approval, Ms. Stewart required re-payment on the basis the advance had been a loan. 6551450 Manitoba Ltd. denied a loan agreement. Ms. Stewart commenced an action. The Court of Queen’s Bench granted damages against 6551450 Manitoba Ltd., a director, and a shareholder. The Man. C.A. dismissed an appeal. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Real Property: Joint Ventures

6551450 Manitoba Ltd. v. Peguis First Nation, Chief Peguis Investment Corp., 6223291 Manitoba Ltd., et al., 2023 MBCA 72 (40992)
6551450 Manitoba Ltd. was a joint venture formed to make an offer to purchase land to operate a limestone quarry, conditional on obtaining municipal approval for the quarry. It entered into a joint venture with the Peguis First Nation and its economic development entity Chief Peguis Investment Corp., and incorporated 6223291 Manitoba Ltd., for purposes of purchasing the land and obtaining municipal approval. Municipal approval was not obtained and the deal collapsed. 6551450 brought a claim for damages against the Peguis First Nation, Chief Peguis Investment Corp. and 6223291 Manitoba Ltd. The Court of Queen’s Bench of Manitoba dismissed the claim. The Man. C.A. dismissed an appeal. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Torts: Defamation

Satyam Patel v. Robert Younghusband McMurtry, et al., 2023 SKCA 74 (40965)
The Applicant physician commenced an action against the Respondents alleging that opinions they provided in the context of the administrative proceedings were defamatory or otherwise caused injury. The Applicant sued the Respondents (Dr. McMurtry and Western Medical Assessments Corporation (WMAC)) for negligence, negligent misrepresentation, defamation, and wrongful interference with economic relations. The chambers judge struck out the claims. The Sask. C.A. allowed the appeal in part. The Sask. C.A. set aside the chambers judge’s order that had struck the claim in its entirety and remitted the matter back to the Court of King’s Bench to determine the other bases for the Respondents’ application to strike (i.e., whether the claims were frivolous, vexatious, or otherwise an abuse of process). The Sask. C.A. upheld only the portion of the chambers judge’s decision which struck the paragraphs in the claim setting out an action in defamation. “The motion for an extension of time to serve and file the reply is granted. The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs.”

Wills & Estates: Agreements on Future Succession

Denis Adam v. Lorraine Adam,2023 QCCA 1285 (41020)
The Respondent, Lorraine Adam, and her mother, Pauline Tétreault — respectively the sister and mother of the Applicant, Denis Adam — entered into a transaction for the sale of a “sugar bush” owned by Ms. Tétreault. Shortly after his mother’s death, Mr. Adam brought an action seeking the annulment of the sale, arguing that it was an agreement on future succession, prohibited by art. 631 of the Civil Code of Québec and contrary to public order. The Qué. Superior Court dismissed the action to annul the sale. The judge found the action was prescribed and that Mr. Adam was wrong in arguing that the sale was null on the ground that it was an agreement on future succession. The clause in the “act of sale” concerning the mode of payment of the sale price for the sugar bush did not meet the four conditions developed in the jurisprudence for characterizing a contract as an agreement on future succession. The parties’ intention was that payment of the price be subject to a term corresponding to Ms. Tétreault’s death, not that the sale price be paid out of the Respondent’s share in the future succession. The Qué. C.A. dismissed Mr. Adam’s appeal with legal costs: the trial judge made no reviewable error in rejecting Mr. Adam’s argument that the transaction was an agreement on future succession and thus absolutely null; the trial judge’s conclusion was supported by the evidence. “The application for leave to appeal…is dismissed with costs to the respondent.”