Pomeroy v. Couprie 2017 Ont SCJ
Plaintiff commenced an action for $3 million against the main defendant and others, including a lawyer. The plaintiff settled the action against the lawyer for payment of $3,000. The plaintiff was to make a payment “in return for a comprehensive mutual release (lawpro standard form) and … a Notice of Discontinuance.” In accepting the settlement, the plaintiff requested the draft release “in the form proposed for my review.” The parties agreed that there was a settlement regardless of the form of the release, but disagreed on the form of the release. The lawyer wanted the unchanged standard LawPro release. The plaintiff wanted to amend the no claims over clause to ensure that it would be able to continue its action against the remaining defendants and to ensure that a separate claim, not referenced in the statement of claim, could be made against the lawyer for breach of an alleged duty as bare trustee holding a disputed share certificate. The judge used commercial interpretation rules to decide that the plaintiff’s position was the better one.
Written by Jonathan Speigel Jonathan Speigel, the founding partner of Speigel Nichols Fox LLP, leads the litigation and construction practices.