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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Québec – Fragmentation of shareholders dispute stayed pending appeal on jurisdiction – #678

In Istanboulian v Kalajian, 2022 QCCA 1259, Justice Cournoyer granted leave to appeal from a judgment of the Québec Superior Court, which had referred part of a claim to arbitration. He found that the judgment under appeal caused irremediable injury to the Applicants by possibly preventing them from being heard in the appropriate forum and that it was in the interest of justice to immediately get to the bottom of the jurisdictional issue.

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Québec – No clean hands, no security despite stay of homologation application – #677

In Specter Aviation v United Mining Supply, 2022 QCCS 3643, Justice Castonguay granted a stay of an application by the successful party in a foreign arbitration to homologate the award, but denied the applicants’ alternative request for security, pending the unsuccessful party’s annulment application to the Paris Court of Appeal. Despite recognizing that a court should be reluctant to interfere with a successful party’s enforcement efforts, Justice Castonguay found that the annulment application was, “neither futile nor frivolous” and that the successful party did not have clean hands and had resorted to a self-help remedy. He also ordered costs against the successful party.

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Alberta – Action brought to require payment ordered in award – #676

In Tomalik v Enthink Inc., 2022 ABCA 302, the Court dismissed an appeal of the decision of Justice Gill of the Alberta Court of King’s Bench, who ordered the Appellant companies to buy out the Respondents’ shares in the companies pursuant to a Unanimous Shareholders Agreement (“USA”) and a valuation done by the second of two valuators.  The Respondents argued that the first valuation was too low and pursued arbitration, as result of which the arbitrator found the first valuation deficient and ordered a second valuation, which was even lower.  The arbitrator ordered the Appellants to purchase the shares at the second valuation amount. When they refused to pay, the Respondents sued the Appellants for breach of contract and, in a separate action, the second valuator in negligence for failing to arrive at a fair valuation.  The two actions were permitted to proceed; by accepting the valuation as binding upon them in the first action and challenging it in the second, the Respondents were not seeking “inconsistent and mutually exclusive rights”.

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Ontario – Domestic arbitration statutes can supplement industry-specific arbitration schemes – #675

In Neuhaus Management Ltd v. Huang, 2022 ONSC 5548, the Ontario Divisional Court (Firestone RSJ, Stewart, and Akhtar JJ.) examined how Ontario’s domestic arbitration statute can be incorporated into and be read together with an industry-specific statutory arbitration scheme, the  Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act, R.S.O.1990, c.O.31 (the “Ontario New Home Warranties Act”).

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