Québec – Court dismisses application challenging arbitral tribunal’s joinder of non-signatory – #680

In Newtech Waste Solutions inc. c. Asselin, 2022 QCCS 3537, Justice Bellavance dismissed an application challenging an arbitral tribunal’s jurisdictional decision to join a non-signatory corporation to an arbitration. Justice Bellavance validated the tribunal’s application of jurisprudence on joinder of non-signatories to arbitrations seated in Québec. Although the non-signatory was a stranger to the arbitration agreement, the arbitral tribunal found, and Justice Bellavance agreed, that it was appropriate to join it based on a prima facie showing that the corporation was one of the parties’ alter ego.

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Ontario – Foreign award enforcement upheld on appeal despite previous attornment to court – #679

In Wang v. Luo, 2022 ONSC 5544, Justice LeMay, sitting as an Ontario Divisional Court judge, upheld the enforcement of a foreign arbitral award rendered under the auspices of the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (“CIETAC”). He rejected the Appellant’s arguments that the Superior Court of Justice erred in enforcing the award, including an argument that enforcement was improper given the Respondent’s previous attempt to pursue its claim before the Ontario Small Claims Court.

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Ontario – Court of Appeal upholds “single proceeding” insolvency model over recourse to arbitration – #660

In Mundo Media Ltd. (Re), 2022 ONCA 607, Court of Appeal for Ontario Justice Julie Thorburn dismissed a motion for leave to appeal a decision denying a motion to stay a receiver’s court proceeding. The Appellant/Moving Party sought the stay on the basis of an international arbitration agreement. Justice Thorburn found no reversible error in the motion judge’s choice to apply the “single proceeding model”, applicable in insolvency proceedings, with the effect that the Appellant/Moving Party, one of the insolvent company’s debtors, could not require the receiver to arbitrate its claim rather than litigate it. Together with the Superior Court’s decision below, this decision provides important guidance on the interplay between arbitration agreements and claims advanced in the bankruptcy and insolvency context.

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British Columbia: – Court partially stays class action related to videogame “loot boxes” – #639

In Petty v Niantic Inc., 2022 BCSC 1077, Justice Mayer stayed a proposed class action in favour of arbitration, except in respect of claims advanced under B.C.’s Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act [BPCPA]. He rejected the Representative Plaintiffs’ arguments that the arbitration agreements were null and void for unconscionability and/or violating B.C. public policy. He also applied the competence-competence principle, holding the arbitral tribunal should decide first as to its jurisdiction over claims based on the Competition Act where the parties’ contract provided for California law.

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Ontario – Dismissal of appeal of order enforcing award as abuse of process – #621

In Ledsham v. Air Canada Pilots Association, 2022 ONSC 1877, a self-represented litigant found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time to appeal an order enforcing an arbitral award. Justice D.L. Corbett of the Ontario Divisional Court summarily dismissed the appeal under rule 2.1.01 of the Ontario Rules of Civil Procedure. That Rule provides that the court may, on its own initiative, stay or dismiss a proceeding if it appears on its face to be frivolous, vexatious or an abuse of the process. Despite observing several badges of vexatiousness, Justice Corbett declined to declare the appellant a vexatious litigant. He nevertheless found the appeal before him was frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of process.

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B.C. – Court recognizes/enforces Swiss award, rejecting public policy defence – #597

In Enrroxs Energy and Mining Group v Saddad, 2022 BCSC 285, Justice Crerar granted a petition to enforce a foreign arbitral award under the International Commercial Arbitration Act, RSBC 1996, c 233 (ICAA) and the Foreign Arbitral Awards Act, RSBC 1996, c 154 (FAAA). He rejected the respondent’s attempts to resist enforcement based on the public policy ground in subparagraph 36(1)(b)(ii) of the ICAA and art. V(2)(b) of the FAAA. Justice Crerar also rejected the respondent’s request to stay execution pending a valuation of certain assets that the petitioner had seized, which the responded complained could result in double recovery.

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