Blog

Feeling ‘Crabby’?: Ontario Court of Appeal Clarifies Scope of Expanded Fact-Finding Powers on Summary Judgment

13 August 2018

By Brendan Monahan

Under what circumstances can a motion judge decide a contested factual issue using the expanded fact-finding powers under rule 20.04(2.1) of the Rules of Civil Procedure (the “Rules”) without oral evidence? That was one of the issues before the Ontario Court of Appeal in a recent decision, 2212886 Ontario Inc. et al. v. Obsidian Group Inc. et al., 2018 ONCA 670. In that case, the Court set aside a partial summary judgment, finding that it was not “in the interest of justice” to determine a key contested factual issue on the basis of a paper record alone.

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LSO Tribunal Recognizes Mental Illness as “Exceptional Circumstance” in Penalty Decision

8 August 2018

By Uri Snir

In a recent penalty ruling by the Law Society Tribunal, Mr. Darwin Anthony Yantha (the “Licensee”) was ordered to surrender his licence to practice law in Ontario, despite the panel’s acknowledgment that the Licensee’s clinical depression and alcoholism were the cause of his recklessness in billing practices. It was this recklessness in billing practices that led to disciplinary proceedings commenced by the Law Society of Ontario (“LSO”) in which the panel concluded that the Licensee had knowingly (recklessly) engaged in dishonest or fraudulent conduct.

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Barrister’s Robes, or How to Get Away With Wearing a Wizard Costume to Work

27 July 2018

By Eden Kaill

Barrister’s Robes. Personally, I love the whole court regalia, but that may be because I’m not a lawyer and don’t have to wear it. I do sometimes wonder how people in American courtrooms know who the lawyers are. But why and under what circumstances do Canadian lawyers wear their robes?

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Ontario Court of Appeal Reiterates that Ontario Contract Provides Basis for Jurisdiction, Even Where Defendant Not Necessarily a Counterparty

23 July 2018

By Cynthia Spry

In Di Gregorio v. Sunwing Vacations Inc., the Ontario Court of Appeal dealt with the jurisdiction of Ontario courts to hear claims for breach of contract even where the existence of the contract is itself disputed.

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New OSC Study Finds Ways to Encourage More Millennial Investors

16 July 2018

By Uri Snir

In response to its November 2017 empirical study, entitled Missing Out: Millenials and the Markets (which I previously summarized here), the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has released a further study.

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Ontario Court Finds Non-Solicitation Clause Valid Based on Unique Dealer Structure

6 July 2018

By Daniel Babin (Summer Law Student)

In our June 20, 2018 blog post, we noted that in National Bank Financial Inc. v Canaccord Genuity Corp. the British Columbia Supreme Court held that non-solicitation clauses in employment agreements between financial advisors and their employers may be found invalid for public policy reasons, as the interests of clients must be put ahead of those of the firm.

By contrast, in the recent decision of MD Physician Services Inc. v. Wisniewski, the Ontario Court of Appeal upheld a trial decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice enforcing a non-solicitation clause, and finding that the advisors (and their new employer) were liable for breach of such clause. The Court of Appeal specifically approved the lower Court’s application of specific criteria to the question of whether or not such a clause should be enforced.

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Ryerson Law School: Contributing to a lawyer glut, or opening the door to accessible justice?

28 June 2018

By Eden Kaill

Ontario may soon have a new option for those wanting to become lawyers without ending up in unmanageable amounts of debt.

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B.C. Court Finds Non-Solicitation Clause Invalid for Public Policy Reasons

20 June 2018

By Uri Snir

A recent decision from the British Columbia Supreme Court suggests that non-solicitation clauses in employment agreements between financial advisors and their firms may be found invalid for public policy reasons, as the interests of clients must be put ahead of those of the firm.

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Law Society Tribunal Dismisses Discipline Case over Failure to Accommodate Mental Illness

14 June 2018

By Shakaira John

In Law Society of Ontario v. Burtt, the Law Society Tribunal recently dismissed a disciplinary case against a Toronto lawyer, finding that the Law Society of Ontario (the “LSO”) had failed to satisfy its duty to accommodate the lawyer’s disability (mental illness).

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The Duty of Good Faith Performance: an Unfettered Right to Terminate is Not Unfettered

4 June 2018

By Cynthia Spry

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently found that a termination clause in a contract that appeared, on its face, to provide an unfettered right of termination is subject to the duty of good faith contractual performance set out by the Supreme Court of Canada in Bhasin v. Hrynew, 2014 SCC 71.

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