魁省高等法院对受疫情影响下商事租约纠纷作出判决!

全国各地中小型企业因新冠疫情蔓延面临无法预料的挑战。在蒙特利尔,许多经营餐馆,健身房和服装店的华人朋友们都在为疫情期间营业额直线下滑,无法承担昂贵租金而发愁。今年七月中旬,魁省高等法院作出裁定表示,因响应政府公共卫生政策号召而暂停营业的企业可以酌情免除缴付房租的义务。

该案中,一个华人开的健身房不幸被房东告上法庭。房东要求健身房赔付今年三月到六月的房租。房东认为,即使健身房被迫暂停营业,健身房的器械依旧存放在原处;由于健身房已经获得了来自联邦政府的租客应急补助,健身房没有合法理由拒绝缴付房租。健身房则辩称,健身房的暂停营业是不可抗力造成的。根据魁省政府3月24日颁布的行政命令,由于健身房不被认定为维持人们生命健康和基本社会功能的城市基本核心服务,所有魁省的健身房都被勒令暂停营业以延缓新冠疫情的蔓延。因此,健身房的无法营业,无法产生营业额,无法支付房租是由不能预见,不能避免,不能克服的不可抗力因素造成的。根据魁北克民法典第1470条规定,健身房有权要求免除缴付被迫暂停营业期间的房租的责任。

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Mazzetta v. Dégust-Mer: Quebec Courts Have Jurisdiction as the CISG Governs the Sales Contract of the Frozen Lobsters – #36

The United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) is designed to facilitate international trade and to remove legal barriers among Contracting States by providing substantive rules that regulate the duties and obligations of parties to a commercial transaction, such as the delivery of goods, contract formation, and remedies for breach of contract (See Preamble of the CISG). The CISG applies to contracts of sale of goods between parties whose places of business are in different Contracting States (See Art. 1 (1) (a) of CISG). As of October 2020, 94 states have ratified the CISG (See Updates on CISG). The USA is a signatory of CISG, which has been in effect there since 1986. Canada acceded to the CISG in 1992, and Quebec incorporated it into domestic law through An Act respecting the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, which has been taken into effect since May 1, 1992. In April 2011, the Quebec Court of Appeal ruled on the disputes between a Quebec frozen lobster seller, Dégust-Mer, and an American company, Mazzeta, the buyer who had failed to pay for the sale and delivery fees of frozen lobsters (Mazzetta Company, l.l.c. c. Dégust-Mer inc.2011 QCCA 717). This court decision reminds us that the governing law of this international sales of goods contract should be the CISG.

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“但愿人长久,千里共婵娟” —聊聊2020年加拿大父母团聚移民那些事儿

    “嗨,你怎么还在呀!”我闻声抬起头,看到同事惊讶的眼神,我轻轻地回应道:“是啊,我想把这个庭前审问记录和那个上诉法院的案例看完再走……”

     现在,整个办公室就剩我一人了。坐在蒙特利尔市西山区高级办公楼里,我望向窗外黑漆漆的夜色,看着那微弱的星星点点的街灯,回想着今天前辈律师给我的叮咛教导,肚子突然“咕咕咕”叫了起来。我转眼看电脑屏幕上的时间,呀,都已经晚上八点半了!我还没吃晚饭呢。由于疫情影响,餐馆都提早关门。看来,我只能自己回家做面吃了。

     每当这时候,我都会想,要是父母在身边该多好。小时候,我放学回家,无论多晚,打开家门,总会有一股浓浓的香气扑鼻而来。“爸爸,妈妈!我回来了!好香啊!今天做了什么好吃的?”没等他们回应,我都会急忙往餐桌上凑。哇!是可口的土豆焖鸡和我最爱喝的排骨莲藕冬菇汤。我急忙去洗手,然后“飞”奔到餐桌前,用手捏起一块大大的鸡肉吃了起来。这时候,妈妈会脱下围裙,笑着说:“小馋猫,慢点吃。”爸爸则会不紧不慢地打开电视,调到新闻频道,开始他对我的家国情怀教育。爸爸有时候也会给我讲曾国藩,苏东坡等中国古代圣贤的故事。妈妈也会借机叮嘱我多练琴。有时候,我会给爸妈夹肉。可他们总会把肉放回我碗里,叮嘱我说:“你要多吃,你在长身体,爸妈要减肥。”

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La Cour se fonde sur la sentence arbitrale rendue après le procès pour déterminer la valeur en litige de la taxation d’un mémoire de frais – #34

Le jugement sur Langlois v. Langlois2020 QCCS 2959 nous enseigne que la « valeur en litige » au sens de l’ancien Tarif des honoraires judiciaires des avocats n’équivaut pas au « valeur du litige » . Il n’est pas nécessaire de trouver la valeur en litige dans les conclusions de la procédure. En effet, la greffière spéciale peut aller consulter « les procédures, les pièces, la sentence arbitrale après le procès etc. » pour déterminer cette valeur.

Les faits pertinents

Depuis 1987, trois générations de Langlois ont créé, établi, développé et investi dans l’entreprise familiale de transformation et de vente de crevettes, Crustacés des Monts inc. (ci-après « CDM »).

Depuis le début de l’année 2011, un conflit éclate entre les membres de la famille Langlois. Les demandeurs, Michel et Yvon, actionnaires minoritaires et administrateurs de CDM sont exclus et écartés de l’administration et de la gestion de CDM. Après avoir offert leurs actions à leurs coactionnaires pour un prix équivalent à leur juste valeur marchande, mais en vain, ils s’adressent à la Cour supérieure en vertu des articles 450 et suivants de la Loi sur les sociétés par actions (ci-après « LSA »), pour obtenir le rachat de leurs actions à leur valeur marchande. Les défendeurs demandent le rejet de toutes les conclusions recherchées dans la demande introductive d’instance.

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When his right to freely express himself hits her right to protect her reputation in the professional world – #33

“He filed a complaint against me at the professional association which is absolutely unfounded.” “He even solicited the help of third parties to obtain my Facebook account in my home country…””He left numerous negative comments about my business on social media, such as Google Reviews.” How can I protect myself effectively from those attacks? Am I entitled to compensatory, moral and punitive damages?

No freedom is absolute. While a person has right to freely express himself, a person also has right to the safeguard of his reputation and to respect for his private life. These fundamental rights are protected by the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms (“Charter”) and, for the most part, recognized by the Civil Code of Quebec (“C.c.Q.”) as civil rights that every human being is entitled to their full enjoyment. An unlawful interference with a charter protected right entitles the victim to obtain compensation for the moral and material prejudice resulting therefrom. If intentional, punitive damages may also be awarded.

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Caron v. Attorney General of Canada: The Superior Court clarifies the proper interpretation of section 3(1)(b) of the Citizenship Act – #32

Benjamin was born in the Netherlands in a same-sex parented family. His Canadian citizenship application was refused by the government because there is no biological link between Benjamin and his Canadian parent, which was interpreted as an essential requirement for derivative citizenship according to section 3(1)(b) of the Citizenship Act (“Act”). Instead of applying for judicial review before the Federal Court of Canada, the plaintiffs seek an order declaring that the government’s interpretation of s. 3(1)(b) of the Act breached and continues to breach their Charter right to equality before the Superior Court of Quebec. Interestingly, the Attorney General of Canada also agrees with the plaintiffs that the government’s interpretation of s. 3(1)(b) brings it in conflict with s. 15(1) of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (“Charter”). In July 2020, Mr. Justice Frédéric Bachand declared that in order to conform with Canadian human rights legislation as well as with the Charter, the interpretation requiring a biological link between Benjamin and his Canadian parent breaches his Charter right and that the terms “père et mère” in the French text should refer to both biological and legal parentage. This judgment protects same-sex couples’ rights to start and raise families of their own in Canada (Caron c. Attorney General of Canada2020 QCCS 2700).

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L’affaire Grand-Maison : L’accès au terrain du voisin et la réparation du préjudice – #31

Au Québec, le voisin peut avoir l’accès au votre terrain pour effectuer une construction sur son propre terrain lorsque les travaux ne peuvent pas être réalisés sans passer par votre terrain (Art. 987 C.c.Q.). Vous ne pouvez pas refuser l’accès à moins que vous ne puissiez démontrer que l’accès à votre terrain n’est pas nécessaire ou qu’il y a d’autres moyens d’effectuer les travaux (paragr. 23, Murphy c. Caldareri, 2008 QCCS 6721; page 395, LAFOND, Pierre-Claude, Précis de droit des biens, 2e édition). En outre, si l’accès au votre terrain vous cause des inconvénients anormaux, le voisin devient responsable de plein droit, sans qu’il y ait faute (Art. 976 C.c.Q.).

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Mexico v. Burr: Judicial Review of Ontario Court on Investor-State Arbitration Tribunal’s Partial Award on Applicant’s Jurisdictional Objections – #30

This dispute arose between the United Mexican States and the United States of America nationals. The Respondents alleged that they suffered USD$100 million in damages when the Applicant closed down the casinos the Respondents had been operating in Mexico (The United Mexican States v. Burr, 2020 ONSC 2376). Attempts at settlement failed, the Respondents submitted their claims to arbitration according to Chapter 11 of the North America Free Trade Agreement between the Government of Canada, the Government of Mexico and the Government of the United States (NAFTA). The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) registered the claim to arbitration. Toronto, Canada was determined as the seat of the arbitration. In May 2018, the Tribunal held a five-day hearing on jurisdiction in Washington, DC as the Applicant insisted that the Tribunal did not have jurisdiction on this matter. The Tribunal dismissed all three of the Applicant’s jurisdictional objections in July 2019 ((B-Mex, LLC and Others v. United Mexican StatesICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/16/3)). Consequently, the Applicant brought this applicant to the Superior Court of Justice for Ontario for a declaration that the Tribunal had no jurisdiction or had limited jurisdiction to decide the claims before it.

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Cao v. Chen: Should the Chinese Judgment be recognized by British Columbia Court? – WriteToLearn Notes

A court enforcing a foreign judgment is enforcing the obligation created by that judgment (Pro Swing Inc. v. Elta Golf Inc. 2006 SCC 52). The principle of the separation of judicial systems reminds us that as long as the foreign court has jurisdiction to adjudicate the dispute, absent evidence of fraud or a judgment contrary to natural justice or public policy, the enforcing court is not interested in the substantive or procedural law of the foreign jurisdiction (para. 89 of Pro Swing Inc. v. Elta Golf Inc. 2006 SCC 52). This article summarizes the reasoning of the Supreme Court of British Columbia on Cao v. Chen2020 BCSC 735 on the matter of the recognition and enforcement of a Chinese judgment on family matters.

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Daesung v Praxair: Non-Chinese Institutions Can Administer Arbitrations Seated in China

In August 2020, the Shanghai Court rules that if the parties have chosen a non-Chinese arbitration for an arbitration seated in China, as long as the arbitration agreement complies with other requirements within Article 16 of the PRC Arbitration Law, then the arbitration agreement is valid (Daesung Industrial Gases Co. Ltd. v Praxair (China) Investment Co. Ltd. [2020] Shanghai 01 Civil Special 83).

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