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Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and which French-language case have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

For this last week:

1. Lapointe Rosenstein Marchand Melançon LLP v. Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP, 2016 SCC 30

[1] Even if the underlying facts involve another jurisdiction, a Canadian court can, if there is a sufficient connection, assume jurisdiction over a tort claim. In Van Breda,[1] this Court identified four “presumptive connecting factors” to assist in making this determination. This appeal focuses on the fourth factor, whereby jurisdiction can be assumed if a contract connected with the dispute was made in the province where the tort claim is brought.

[2] The specific question in this appeal is whether the Ontario courts should assume jurisdiction over a third party claim brought by an Ontario law firm against several law firms located in Quebec in the context of a national class action.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

2. R v Wells, 2016 ABPC 171

[1] Canadians place a high value on their freedom of expression. Some choose to exercise that freedom by the verbal exchange of opinions or ideas at public assemblies. Others exercise that freedom by written submissions to print or electronic media. Robert Dale Wells (“Wells”) chose to exercise that freedom by mounting a large fluorescent pink sign bearing the phrase “Fuck Harper” in the rear window of his motor vehicle and drive around on Highway #2.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

3. R v Short, 2016 ONSC 4594

[34] It is easy to conclude that the first two criteria for self-defense under section 34(1)(a) and (b) of the Criminal Code are satisfied. When he fought with Mr. Brown, Mr. Short believed on reasonable grounds that force was being used against him. The security video shows the entire fight commencing with a blindsided attack on Mr. Short, as Mr. Brown comes at him with fists flying from the wings of the corridor when Mr. Short is least expecting it. Likewise, when Mr. Short turned to fight back, he was doing so to repel the force that Mr. Brown was already using against him and to protect himself from the harm caused by that use of force.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

The most-consulted French-language decision was Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse (Gabriel et autres) c. Ward, 2016 QCTDP 18

[130] En matière de diffamation, les tribunaux ont dégagé une série de critères qui permettent de déterminer si l’atteinte à la réputation d’une personne est justifiée par la liberté d’expression. La véracité des propos et l’intérêt public sont des facteurs pertinents[72]. Le contexte dans lequel les propos ont été prononcés, le ton employé, l’identité de l’auteur des propos et celle de la victime le sont également. Le Tribunal estime que ces critères sont aussi utiles au moment de déterminer si une atteinte discriminatoire au droit à la sauvegarde de la réputation, au respect de l’honneur et à la sauvegarde de la dignité est justifiée par la liberté d’expression.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

* As of January 2014 we measure the total amount of time spent on the pages rather than simply the number of hits; as well, a case once mentioned won’t appear again for three months.

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