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. McKesson Canada Corporation v. The Queen, 2014 TCC 266

[4] As detailed below, I have, of my own motion, decided that I am compelled to consider whether I need to recuse myself from the two remaining issues before this Court. A consideration of this issue is required because I became aware that the Appellant and Appellant’s counsel, together with its co-counsel in the Federal Court of Appeal in respect of the appeal of the trial decision, had made certain public written statements about me in its factum in the Federal Court of Appeal (the “Factum”) which, upon reflection, appear to me to clearly include:

(i) allegations that I was untruthful and deceitful in my Reasons;

(ii) clear untruths about me, what I said and heard in the course of the trial, as well as the existence of evidentiary foundations supporting what I wrote in my Reasons; and

(iii) allegations of impartiality on my part.

2. Young Men’s Christian Association of Greater Toronto v. Municipal Property Assessment Corporation, 2014 ONSC 3657

[14] The issue of whether the YMCA’s four leased properties are exempt from assessment is a matter of statutory interpretation.

[15] When a court is called upon to interpret a statute, its task is to discover the intention of the legislator as expressed in the language of the statute.[2] The court’s approach to interpretation is teleological or purposeful, and to interpret a statute, the words of the statute are to be read in their entire context and in their grammatical and ordinary sense harmoniously with the scheme of the statute, the object of the statute, and the intention of the legislator.[3] The court’s role is to interpret the statute not enact it; if the sense of the words of the statute is clear and unambiguous, the court must interpret the words literally and in accordance with their plain meaning even if the consequences are absurd or unjust.[4] Recognition of the proper roles of the legislature and the judiciary requires that courts give effect to the plain meaning of the words of a duly enacted statute, and a court should not interfere merely because it does not approve of the result produced by the statute in a particular case.[5]

3. Lemare Lake Logging Ltd v 3L Cattle Company Ltd, 2014 SKCA 35

[22] Lemare Lake takes issue with each of the main conclusions of the Chambers judge. It submits she erred in (a) concluding that Part II of the SFSA was not rendered inoperative by the doctrine of federal paramountcy, (b) finding that 3L Cattle is not insolvent, and (c) deciding that, in any event, it would not be just or convenient to appoint a receiver.

[23] I appreciate that the courts do not normally consider a constitutional issue unless its resolution is necessary to decide a controversy. There are good reasons for exercising this sort of caution. That said, the question of whether the BIA renders Part II of the SFSA inoperative by virtue of the doctrine of paramountcy was decided in the court below and will no doubt soon present itself again and frequently in that court. The issue was fully argued in this appeal, and argued with the participation of the Attorney General for Saskatchewan. As a result, it seems the wisest course of action is to deal with the paramountcy problem even though, in light of my conclusion about whether a receiver should be appointed, it is not strictly necessary to do so. This approach will avoid both re-litigating the issue in the Court of Queen’s Bench and the inevitable further appeal to this Court.

The most-consulted French-language decision was L.S. c. Kama Sutra inc., 2014 QCCQ 8713

[1] Le demandeur demande le remboursement du prix payé pour une poupée gonflable achetée de Kama Sutra inc. Il invoque en sa faveur la garantie de durabilité prévue à l’article 38 de la Loi sur la protection du consommateur[1] (« L.P.C. »).

[2] Kama Sutra inc. ( «Kama Sutra ») refuse de rembourser le prix du bien invoquant principalement l’usage abusif et une réparation inadéquate.

* 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.


  1. Oh wow. Reading the Quebec case definitely made my morning.