Commercial actors who want to begin a lawsuit in Ontario but don’t have the money on hand or want to minimize their costs may turn to third parties to help them in funding the litigation. Courts have traditionally taken a dim view of third-party litigation funding. Today, however, as the costs of civil litigation rise in Ontario, the courts appear to be reconsidering their traditional stance on “litigation trafficking” in favour of encouraging more access to justice.
A new Nova Scotia law enacted to prevent cyber-bullying could turn out to be a powerful tool for combating online harassment of your business, your professional practice, and you.
Do you have a memorandum of understanding, a letter of intent, or some other “agreement to agree” with a supplier, a customer, an adviser, a partner, a potential purchaser, or some other business party? If you do, then you need to understand when such an agreement binds you legally because the Court is finding that some terms in some agreements to agree are “binding” while others are not.
Are you a small service provider that does not have a written contract with your customers or a one pager you drafted yourself? Counsel can suggest a few simple improvements to your standard form contract that may go a long way to improving your relations with customers and minimizing your risk. Budgeting a modest up front cost for this purpose is a sound investment for any service provider.
Blaneys’ partners Lou Brzezinski and John Polyzogopoulos made submissions to the Supreme Court of Canada on Thursday, March 21, 2013, on behalf of The Financial Advisors Association of Canada (Advocis), which had been granted Intervener status in the case of McLean v. British Columbia Securities Commission.
In the middle of the night, a commercial tenant removes all its goods and chattels of value and, without prior warning, ceases operating its business from its leased premises prior to the end of the term of its lease.
Owners sometimes refuse to make payment, and as a result, unpaid contractors sometimes walk off the job. It happens daily in Ontario.
Parties to a contract (or one party to a contract) may discover that the contract they signed and filed away in their desks does not accurately reflect the deal they thought they had entered. This can inevitably lead to significant disputes when steps are taken by the other party to enforce a provision of an agreement that one of the parties does not believe accurately reflects the intentions of the parties.
The Rules of Civil Procedure in Ontario require courts to apply and interpret the rules of court in a way that helps the parties secure the “just, most expeditious and least expensive determination of every civil proceeding on its merits”. Yet anyone who has been involved in a lawsuit knows that it can often take years to get the case to trial and cost many tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars to get there.
The following scenario may be familiar to you: You have been negotiating an important deal. A letter of intent or some other preliminary agreement has been signed. You have exchanged numerous drafts of the agreement with the other side. Then, negotiations break down, you withdraw from the deal and the other party sues your company for breaching the preliminary agreement. The question then becomes, did the preliminary agreement constitute a contract at law and will a law suit for breach of contract succeed?
Suing for defamation on the Internet just got more difficult in Canada. On October 19, 2011, the Supreme Court of Canada released its long-awaited decision on whether linking to defamatory statements on the Internet constitutes publication for the purposes of a defamation action. With Crookes v. Newton, the Court has decided that posting a hyperlink on the Internet does not in itself constitute publication of defamatory material available on another website.
“There seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult.” - Warren Buffett.
Background The value of adopting a brand or trademark will be instantly obvious when one considers trademarks such as the Apple logo on the iPad or the Nike swoosh. Fortunately, even for not-so-famous trademarks, Canadian trademark law restricts confusion between different vendors’ products or services. The underlying policy rationale is that the consumer has a right to know the source of the product or service being offered. Businesses benefit from the opportunity to distinguish their products and build goodwill associated with their brand-name(s).
Mediation in its various forms continues to evolve as an alternative to litigation. Ontario’s new Commercial Mediation Act, 2010, which took effect last October 25, introduces some welcome features to this collaborative dispute resolution process generally, one in which the parties opt to have a mediator, who cannot impose any particular outcome, help them resolve the dispute.
Insolvent companies with under-funded employee pension plans that want to borrow money to keep operating and ultimately return to profitability may find it tougher to find new financing as a result of a recent Ontario Court of Appeal decision. The Court ruled on April 7 that Indalex Limited (and certain affiliated companies), the second largest aluminum extrusion company in North America, which administered two pension plans, one for employees and the other for executives, was obliged to pay its pension
Some time or other, most people give in to the temptation. You turn on your computer or smart phone, find your way to an Internet search engine, and type your own name into the search engine toolbar. Typically, you will come across links to your professional profile, or reports about your business and charitable dealings. But what do you do if you discover a website, message board, social media page, or other online publication containing false and damaging statements about you or your business?
After drafting of this article, but prior to publication the parties entered into an interim settlement whereby Borden & Elliot agreed not to proceed with their appeal of the Honourable Madam Justice Roberts' Order.