Blog Archives

Punitive Damage Award of $350,000 Made Against ICBC for Malicious Prosecution

By Andrew Dixon

In a recent BCSC decision ICBC was found guilty of malicious prosecution after ICBC wrongfully accused a new immigrant of making fraudulent insurance claims. The Court ordered an extraordinary punitive damage award of $350,000 against ICBC. Although not a typical insurance case, Arsenovski v. Bodin, 2016 BCSC 359 highlights ICBC’s responsibility to act in good faith during its investigation process as a public insurer, and reminds private insurers that there are consequences for failing to undertake investigations reasonably.

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Successful Pearson-Dogwood Project: Phase II

On March 15, 2016, Vancouver Coastal Health Authority (VCH) completed Phase II of its $302 million land sale to the Onni Group of the Pearson-Dogwood site on the Cambie Corridor in Vancouver.

Clark Wilson, with a team led by Darren Donnelly, is honoured to have represented VCH in both phases of this transaction (Phase I completed in 2015). The Pearson-Dogwood site is 24.5 acres and will be developed by Onni into approximately 2.3 million square feet of residential space. VCH remains actively engaged.

When the site is subdivided, VCH will reacquire a portion of it for development into a healthcare facility. As well, Onni, YMCA and VCH will be the owners of air spaces in an integrated building comprised of a YMCA pool and health facility, a VCH community health facility and an 11-storey residential tower. Clark Wilson will continue to work with VCH on these developments.

Read Business in Vancouver’s recent article to learn more about the project and its benefits for the Cambie Corridor.

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Order prohibiting Google from delivering search results heads to SCC

The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear an appeal from a decision of the B.C. Court of Appeal which upheld a worldwide injunction against Google Inc. (“Google”), wherein Google was ordered to stop delivering search results to its users that pointed to certain websites.

You can find my commentary on the B.C. Court of Appeal’s decision in Equustek Solutions Inc. v. Google Inc., 2015 BCCA 265, here.

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Canadian Securities Regulators Substantially Change Take-Over Bid Rules

By Bernard Pinsky

On February 25, 2016, the Canadian Securities Administrators (“CSA”) announced amendments to take-over bid rules in Canada. The changes, as reflected in National Instrument 62-104 Take-Over Bids and Issuer Bids (NI 62-104) and National Policy 62-203 Take-Over Bids and Issuer Bids, are intended to enhance the quality and integrity of the take-over bid regime while rebalancing the dynamics among bidders, target company boards of directors and target company shareholders during a take-over bid.

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Canadian Securities Regulators Amend Early Warning Reporting Requirements

On February 25, 2016, the Canadian Securities Administrators (“CSA”) announced amendments to the early warning reporting regime (the “Amendments”), which take effect where a party’s total holdings of a reporting issuer’s securities reaches 10 per cent or more.

Once a shareholder reaches the 10 per cent threshold, it must, no later than the opening of trading on the business day following the acquisition of securities bringing it to 10% or more, issue and file a news release containing the information required by section 3.1 of National Instrument 62-103, and within 2 days of the acquisition, file a report on SEDAR with the same information.

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Save the Date: the Importance of the Date of First Use in Canadian Trade-mark Applications (for now)

A recent decision of the Canadian Trade-marks Opposition Board, Constellation Brands Québec Inc. c Sociedad Vinícola Miguel Torres, S.A., 2016 TMOB 4 (“Miguel Torres”), serves as a reminder of the importance of stating an accurate and supportable date of first use, when claiming use as a basis for registration in Canada.

In Miguel Torres, the Applicant filed an application to register the trade-mark HEMISFERIO (the “Mark”) for “wines”, claiming use in Canada since at least as early as October 28, 2011.  As one of its grounds of opposition, the Opponent alleged that the Applicant had not used the Mark in Canada as of the claimed date of first use.

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Location Matters: The Perils of Geographic Names as Trade-marks

When choosing a trade or business name it may seem like a good idea to incorporate the location of your business into the name. There are benefits: it is helpful for marketing, it gives your audience an idea of where your business is and who your market is, it can help establish your business in a neighborhood, and it can help you build a brand based on community and locality.

However, using the location of your business in your trade or business name can cause difficulties when it comes to registering that name as a trade-mark. Under section 12(1) (b) of the Trade-marks Act, a trade-mark is not registerable if it is clearly descriptive or deceptively misdescriptive of the place of origin of the goods or services with which the trade-mark is used, unless that trade-mark has acquired distinctiveness through its use.

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Recent Developments in the Regulation of Defensive Tactics in Canadian Take-over Bids – Part I

By Ethan Minsky

This is the first instalment of a three part article that will appear in the Securities Law Update. In this first part, we will discuss the basic concepts and guiding principles applied by Canadian securities regulators when they are asked to invalidate defensive measures taken against a take-over bid. In the second and third parts we will discuss two recent decisions, one by the British Columbia Securities Commission and the other by the Alberta Securities Commission, in which these guiding principles were applied.

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New Investment Dealer Prospectus Exemption Broadens Potential Investor Market for Canadian Listed Issuers

By Angela Blake

On January 14, 2016, securities regulators in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Saskatchewan announced the adoption of a new prospectus exemption, effective immediately, to allow issuers listed on a Canadian exchange to raise money from non-accredited investors in private placements, provided that the investors have received advice about the suitability of the investment from an investment dealer and certain other conditions are met. This new exemption should make it easier for public companies to raise money in difficult financial markets by expanding the number of potential investors beyond the accredited investor category, without the need for an issuer to incur the additional costs of preparing an offering memorandum.

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Toronto Stock Exchange Clarifies Normal Course Issuer Bid Rules

By Bernard Pinsky

On January 15, 2016, the TSX issued frequently asked questions (“FAQ”) which provide guidance on Sections 628 and 629 of the TSX Company Manual (the “Manual”) for frequently asked questions in respect of normal course issuer bids (“NCIBs”). 

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