Ontario – Motion to quash appeal dismissed in light of conflicting policy implications – #558

In considering whether to grant a motion to quash an appeal in Leon v. Dealnet, 2021 ONSC 7192, Justice Kristjanson of the Ontario Divisional Court was faced with two conflicting policy concerns: respect for and giving effect to arbitration agreements and protecting vulnerable workers by ensuring that  the arbitration agreement did not constitute a contracting out of an employee’s statutory rights

Continue reading “Ontario – Motion to quash appeal dismissed in light of conflicting policy implications – #558”

Ontario – Appeal of award dismissed after party refused to participate – #557

In Vanhof & Blokker Ltd. v Vanhoff & Blokker Acquisition Corp., 2021 ONSC 7211, the Respondents/Appellants on Appeal (“the Sellers”) sold the assets of their horticultural and garden supply business to the Applicants/Respondents on Appeal (“the Purchasers”) pursuant to an Asset Purchase Agreement dated December 29, 2014. The Sellers alleged that the Purchasers breached the terms of the Asset Purchase Agreement and they therefore refused to make payments under the Agreement, claiming that they were induced to enter into the Agreement by fraudulent and negligent misrepresentations made by the Purchasers. The Sellers refused to participate in an arbitration of the dispute and then appealed the final award. Justice Pollack dismissed the appeal, relying upon s. 27(3) of the Arbitration Act, 1991, S.O. 1991, c. 17, on the basis that the Sellers had been advised of the date for the arbitration and had filed material, but had failed to participate. They were obliged to raise their objections about the arbitrator’s jurisdiction before the arbitrator at the hearing, rather than by letter.

Continue reading “Ontario – Appeal of award dismissed after party refused to participate – #557”

Ontario – Historic arbitration decision is not probative evidence in interpretation of a Treaty – #556

In Restoule v. Canada (Attorney General), 2021 ONCA 779, the Ontario Court of Appeal discussed the evidentiary value of an arbitration record –  from an arbitration between Canada, Ontario and Quebec over responsibility for annuity payments under a Treaty with First Nations signed forty years before the arbitration –  in the context of present-day litigation between the Treaty beneficiaries and the Province of Ontario over increases in those annuities. Because of the lack of temporal proximity between the historic arbitration and Treaty formation, and the fact that the evidence at that arbitration was entirely given by potential payors under the Treaty, the arbitration record needed to be viewed with caution. It was not helpful post-Treaty evidence in interpreting the intentions of the parties at the time of Treaty formation.

Continue reading “Ontario – Historic arbitration decision is not probative evidence in interpretation of a Treaty – #556”

BC – correctness standard of review applies on set aside applications on jurisdiction grounds – #555

In lululemon athletica canada inc. v Industrial Color Productions Inc., 2021 BCCA 428, Justice Marchand, for the British Columbia Court of Appeal, dismissed lululemon’s appeal of the chambers judge’s dismissal of its application to set aside the arbitrator’s award made in favour of Industrial Color Productions (“ICP”). The issue was whether the arbitrator had acted outside his jurisdiction in awarding ICP damages that lululemon argued were never claimed in the pleading. Justice Marchand found that the chambers judge had applied the wrong standard of review – the standard of review is correctness and United Mexican States v Cargill, 2011 ONCA 622 remains the leading case on the standard of review for set aside applications on matters of jurisdiction. Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v. Vavilov2019 SCC 65 and Sattva Capital Corp. v. Creston Moly Corp., 2014 SCC 53 were not helpful in this context. However, Justice Marchand found that the chambers judge’s decision to dismiss the set aside application was correct; the arbitrator did not stray outside the scope of the submission to arbitration when the impugned pleading was read generously.

Continue reading “BC – correctness standard of review applies on set aside applications on jurisdiction grounds – #555”

Québec – Judicial immunity precludes compelled evidence on bias challenge; application to arbitrators? – #554

In Credit Transit Inc. v. Chartrand, 2021 QCCS 4329, Justice Lussier of the Québec Superior Court quashed a summons served upon a judge, which purported to compel him to give evidence in relation to an application to disqualify him as the appointed case management judge on grounds of alleged bias. The Court held that judicial immunity, which safeguards judicial independence, also protects judges from being compelled as witnesses in relation to the exercise of their judicial functions.

Continue reading “Québec – Judicial immunity precludes compelled evidence on bias challenge; application to arbitrators? – #554”

Québec – Stay of arbitrator’s decision to add third parties, force them to meet timetable, and refusal to hear them without payment – #553

In Mullen v Nakisa inc., 2021 QCCS 4388, Justice Granosik granted applications to stay an arbitration as against parties who were added as cross-respondents, even though they were not parties to the arbitration agreement, pending judicial review of the arbitrator’s decision to add them. Justice Granosik was concerned that the applicants could be deprived of their right to have a matter determined by a court, and even risked having the arbitration take place in their absence.

Continue reading “Québec – Stay of arbitrator’s decision to add third parties, force them to meet timetable, and refusal to hear them without payment – #553”