Court refuses to recognize and enforce BC ruling in Ontario at common law

Court refuses to recognize and enforce BC ruling in Ontario at common law

Instead, the focus of the BC court’s inquiry was whether the Privy Council’s judgment should be recognized and enforced in that province, which involved addressing the following issues using BC’s law:

  • whether the Privy Council had jurisdiction over the dispute or the parties under the Court Jurisdiction and Proceedings Transfer Act;
  • whether the attorney general was properly served with the claim;
  • whether the attorney general had defences to a judgment for recognition and enforcement in BC

The appellate court said that the issue of comity did not arise, as between BC and Ontario, when considering whether the Ontario court should enforce the BC judgment.

The court then discussed the possible precedents for the legal viability of ricochet judgments. No Ontario judgments have directly tackled the issue of the availability of ricochet judgments, except for the decisions of the Superior Court and the appellate court regarding the registration of the BC judgment under the REJA, the Court of Appeal found.

In this matter, the REJA was inapplicable, so the appellate court said the only available mechanism was an action for recognition and enforcement at common law. The common-law principles on recognizing and enforcing foreign judgments would apply to determine whether to recognize and enforce a recognition and enforcement decision from another jurisdiction, not the jurisprudence relating to registering foreign judgments under the REJA.

Some courts in Canada have determined that the REJA allowed the registration of a recognition and enforcement judgment. However, the appellate court concluded that these decisions had no bearing on the issue in the present proceeding.