Some causes of action are “continuing” in nature. Historically, torts such as trespass or nuisance have in some instances fallen into this category. More recently, Canadian courts have recognized that breaches of contract can also be continuing in nature, particularly in cases where the agreement calls for periodic payments that are dishonored. In essence, Canadian… → Read More
When does the limitation period begin to run for an anticipatory breach of contract? Does the limitation period commence as soon as the guilty party indicates that it will breach a future obligation? Or can the innocent party safely assume that that the limitation period does not run until the time comes for the performance… → Read More
In a very recent decision of the ABCA, Benfield Corporate Risk Canada Limited v. Beaufort International Insurance Inc, 2013 ABCA 200, the Court attempted to address a host of interesting contract issues, some with potentially wide implication, such as how to interpret multiple contracts within a single transaction, including the effect of entire agreement clauses… → Read More
Contributory negligence legislation allows liability to be apportioned between tortfeasors – but what about defendants who are severally liable for a single loss caused by independent breaches of contract? In Petersen Pontiac Buick GMC (Alta.) Ltd. v. Campbell, 2013 ABCA 251, counsel for both parties could find no authority on the issue of apportioning liability… → Read More
During the spring of 2012, the Canadian Appeals Monitor posted a five-part series on the Supreme Court’s judgments in Van Breda, Black, and Éditions Écosociété (the “Van Breda Trilogy”). The Van Breda Trilogy was the Supreme Court’s long anticipated reformulation of the common law principles of private international law. Since the release of the Van Breda Trilogy,… → Read More
Cases Decided The Supreme Court of Canada released one decision this week of interest to Canadian businesses and professions. In Newfoundland and Labrador v. AbitibiBowater Inc., 2012 SCC 67, the majority of the Court held that environmental protection orders issued under provincial legislation, which required an insolvent company to undertake remediation measures but which were… → Read More
A troubling decision It is troubling when contract law fails to accord with commercial reality. It is troubling when a commercial case ignores the underlying economic context. In Southcott Estates Inc. v. Toronto Catholic District School Board, the Supreme Court of Canada applied theoretically pure models of contract and corporate law to conclude that the… → Read More
The Federal Court of Appeal has clarified when the federal Crown will be held responsible for representations made by its officers. In issuing its decision, the Court opted for a narrow interpretation of the Crown’s liability and reiterated that parties that rely on the Crown’s representations have the responsibility to conduct their own due diligence.