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    Mike’s main area of focus is commercial litigation with an emphasis on construction disputes including, in particular, builder's liens, as well as commercial and residential real estate disputes. In addition, he also has ...

Can a public owner contract out of any liability for a failure to follow its own directives, policies and, indeed, its own terms and conditions of a procurement process, including a duty of fairness? Although that issue was largely resolved in the Supreme Court of Canada case of Tercon Contractors Ltd. v. British Columbia (Transportation and Highways), 2010 SCC 4, a ...

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Posted in Real Estate

In a recent B.C. Court of Appeal decision, the court was asked to revisit the age old question of whether vendors of real property in British Columbia can still rely on the doctrine of caveat emptor or 'buyer beware' to avoid certain types of claims made by disgruntled purchasers.  In short, the court ultimately recognized the continuing application of the doctrine with only ...

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Posted in Commercial

In a recent decision from the BC Court of Appeal, the court once again had to struggle with the often difficult issue of what is a “chattel” and what becomes a “fixture” during the course of a commercial tenancy.  In the result, the court confirmed that the test of a chattel v. fixture is not a subjective one, but rather is objective.  Accordingly, although parties to a ...

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On September 18, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada issued its reasons in Stuart Olson Dominion Construction Ltd. v. Structal Heavy Steel, 2015 SCC 43.  Although the judgment concerned the interpretation of the Manitoba Builders’ Lien Act, it has implications for owners, contractors and others in the construction industry across Canada, including remedies available to ...

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Posted in Real Estate

A recent Ontario Superior Court case will be of interest to commercial landlords and tenants alike.

In 1251614 Ontario Ltd v. Gurudutt, the tenant signed a 10 year lease that granted the tenant the right to renew the lease for 2 further terms of 5 years each, with rental rates to be negotiated at the time of renewal and settled by arbitration, if necessary. In addition, the lease ...

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Posted in Real Estate

A recent case from the BC Supreme Court has highlighted yet again that a guarantee or indemnity of a lease (here now referred to as an “Indemnity”) does not necessarily assure payment to a landlord following a default by a tenant.  The terms of the Indemnity must be carefully scrutinized and examined to determine if the specific circumstances outlined in the document are ...

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Tags: Indemnity
Posted in Real Estate

Frequent readers of this blog may recall a post from October 2012, in which we wrote about a Supreme Court of Canada decision that some believed, at the time, would result in the “death knell” for the remedy of specific performance in Canada at least in respect of commercial real estate transactions.  Since then, many courts have indeed grappled with whether that ...

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Posted in Real Estate

Deciding what to do with a defaulting commercial tenant can be a trap for the unwary. A recent decision from the BC Court of Appeal has confirmed that once a landlord has elected to pursue a certain remedy or course of action as against a defaulting tenant, that election may well be irrevocable such that a landlord may not “switch horses” and later elect to pursue a different ...

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On Thursday January 23, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) issued two related decisions that may ultimately go a long way to the possible extinction of the conventional civil trial.  In Hryniak v. Mauldin 2014 SCC 7 and the companion case of Bruno Appliance & Furniture Inc. v. Hryniak 2014 SCC 8, the SCC in unanimous 7 – 0 decisions, issued very strong statements ...

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Posted in Real Estate

The Supreme Court of Canada released its decision today in Southcott Estates Inc. v. Toronto Catholic District School Board, 2012 SCC 51 which addressed a number of thorny issues relevant to commercial real estate disputes including whether a Plaintiff must mitigate its damages where it has made a claim for specific performance of a real estate contract.  The decision has ...

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This blog is authored by members of the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Department. We follow new and interesting issues emerging in the legal and business communities. The wide range of experience among the members of our litigation group will provide a diverse and insightful examination of current legal trends and topics. Our goal is to provide a source of valuable information and insight on a wide variety of matters for our readers.

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