Category: Practice Areas

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Careless Whispers: Ex Parte Communications Lead to Overturned Arbitration Award

May 3, 2018

In its recent decision in Hunt v. The Owners, Strata Plan LMS 2556, the British Columbia Court of Appeal (BCCA) held that private communications between an arbitration panel and only one party to the arbitration can give rise to a reasonable apprehension of bias, rendering the arbitration award void and unenforceable.   BACKGROUND The arbitration was between the owners of a…

Quebec Unveils Draft Regulations, Proposes New Changes to Further Strengthen Consumer Protections

April 30, 2018

The Quebec government is further revising and strengthening its consumer protection regime and is seeking industry feedback on its recently released draft Regulation respecting the application of the Consumer Protection Act (Draft Regulation) and Bill 178, An Act to amend various legislative provisions concerning protection (Bill 178). Many of the changes contemplated by Bill 134, An Act mainly to modernize…

FSCO’s Draft Guideline for Financial Services: 8 Principles for Fair Treatment

April 27, 2018

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) recently requested industry feedback on a proposed Superintendent Guideline, titled Treating Financial Services Consumers Fairly (Proposed Guideline). The purpose of the Proposed Guideline is to ensure there is common understanding between FSCO and the businesses and individuals it regulates (Licensees) as to what it means to treat consumers fairly. To that end, the…

New B.C. Legislation Proposes Multi-Jurisdictional Opt-Out Class Actions

April 27, 2018

INTRODUCTION Recently, the Government of British Columbia introduced Bill 21, 2018 Class Proceedings Amendment Act, to amend the Class Proceedings Act, R.S.B.C. 1996 (amended CPA). The bill received third reading on April 26, 2018. The amended CPA will permit national opt-out classes to be certified by the B.C. courts, which is a significant change from the current requirement that non-resident class…

Canada Looks to Foster Innovation, Business Growth with New IP Strategy

April 27, 2018

On April 26, 2018, the Government of Canada unveiled its long-awaited intellectual property (IP) strategy, through which the government intends to increase IP awareness and foster an ecosystem that supports business growth, innovation and competition.  The government recognized that IP is a valuable business asset and an IP strategy is critical in helping companies and national economies grow and succeed…

Negotiating Commercial Real Estate Purchase Agreements: Getting Past the Sticking Points

April 26, 2018

Negotiations of commercial real estate purchase agreements can, on occasion, become stalled while the buyer and the seller attempt to find common ground on issues of concern to each of them. The negotiation process requires each party to assess whether to “dig in” or concede on key points. Members of the Blakes Commercial Real Estate group examine several provisions in…

Alberta Securities Commission Proposes New Rules to Facilitate Cross-Border Offerings

April 26, 2018

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is proposing to replace its rules and policies governing certain securities distributions to purchasers outside Alberta, with the aim to reduce regulatory red tape and facilitate cross-border offerings. Specifically, the ASC has proposed the repeal ASC Rule 72-501 – Distributions to Purchasers Outside Alberta (Existing Rule), ASC Policy 45-601 – Distributions Outside Alberta (ASC Rule…

Market Correction: B.C. Court Orders Securities Regulator to Revisit Sanctions Regime

April 25, 2018

The British Columbia Court of Appeal (Court) recently released its decision in Davis v. British Columbia (Securities Commission) (Davis), overturning the decision of the B.C. Securities Commission (Commission) to impose a lifetime market ban on an individual for committing fraud pursuant to the B.C. Securities Act. The decision is a strong rebuke of the Commission’s overly formulaic approach to sanctions,…

Canadian Derivatives: Registration Regime for Dealers and Advisers Gets Momentum

April 24, 2018

On April 19, 2018, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) took a major step toward adopting a comprehensive regime for the regulation of those in the business of trading derivatives or advising on derivatives. The CSA published for comment Proposed National Instrument 93-102 Derivatives: Registration (Proposed Registration Rule), along with a proposed Companion Policy. This initiative builds on the CSA’s efforts…

Court Confirms Power of Alberta Aboriginal Consultation Office to Decide Who Gets Consulted

April 23, 2018

The Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench (Court) provided much-needed clarity about the role of the Alberta Aboriginal Consultation Office (ACO) and the duty to consult in Alberta in its decision in Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation v. Alberta (ACFN Decision). The ACFN Decision is one of a series of recent judicial review decisions that stem from questions about the role of…

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