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. R v Stephan, 2021 ABCA 82 (CanLII)

[139] Expert witnesses must accept that their methodology and opinions may well be strongly challenged given the consequential role they play in the justice system. But in our pluralistic democracy, there is no place for weighing evidence, much less determining its admissibility, based on how someone speaks the language of the proceeding. It is inappropriate to disparage witnesses for their pattern of speech, accents or less than perfect command of one of Canada’s official languages. Or of any language for that matter. No witness should fear their testimony will be dismissed or discredited because of their manner of speech. All who come in contact with our justice system must be treated with respect and dignity and on a fair and equal basis. Courts must ensure that unconscious bias does not infect credibility assessments.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

2. Scotia Capital Inc. v. Aphria Inc., 2021 ONSC 1469 (CanLII)

[179] With respect to acceptance of the alleged repudiation by Scotia, and as per Fram Elgin Mills 90 v. Romandale Farms Limited et al., 2019 ONSC 5322, the burden to establish acceptance of the repudiation is on the party asserting acceptance and such acceptance must be clearly and unequivocally communicated to the repudiating party within a reasonable time (para 337). Aphria submits that its acceptance of repudiation was by way of conduct. While Fram does not discount conduct as a possible means of acceptance, I reject that this manner of repudiation exists in the case at bar.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

3. The Riverside Professional Centre Inc. v. The Ottawa Hospital, 2021 ONSC 1705 (CanLII)

[75] The parties were given an opportunity to make further submissions on the applicability of good faith to discretional contacts as discussed in the recent decision of Westech Services v. Greater Vancouver 2021 SCC 7. In Wastech the Supreme Court held that there is a duty to exercise contractual discretion in good faith. The Hospital has always been and continues to be in complete control of the management of the parking in lot B and exercises a contractual discretion on the number of parking passes it will issue. I find that the Hospital has a duty to exercise its contractual discretion concerning parking in good faith and in a reasonable manner in accordance with the purposes of the lease and the reasonable expectations of the parties.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

The most-consulted French-language decision was Piché c. Waardenburg, 2020 QCCQ 8730 (CanLII)

[13] Le défendeur a engagé sa responsabilité en permettant qu’on indique à la fiche descriptive un renseignement qui était inadéquat. Quant au courtier inscripteur, il a non seulement rempli cette fiche descriptive sans faire de vérification même auprès de son client, mais de plus, il a affirmé à la demanderesse et au courtier collaborateur que le terrain était gazonné, sans avoir vérifié. Il est donc responsable envers son client, le défendeur. De plus, il a manqué à son devoir de conseil auprès de son client, de langue étrangère, en ne lui expliquant pas adéquatement la portée des termes paysager, remblai et en ne s’assurant pas de la valeur de ces affirmations. Il ne s’agit pas d’un cas où le client a induit volontairement son courtier en erreur mais plutôt de celui où le courtier n’a pas rempli son rôle adéquatement.

(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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