Summary

35682

Chevron Corporation, et al. v. Daniel Carlos Lusitande Yaiguaje, et al.

(Ontario) (Civil) (By Leave)

(Sealing order)

Keywords

None.

Summary

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Private international law - Foreign judgments - Recognition - Enforcement - Proper test to determine whether a provincial superior court has jurisdiction to entertain an action for recognition and enforcement of a foreign judgment - Whether the real and substantial connection test is a universal test for the jurisdiction simpliciter of the Canadian courts in any action and applies in a recognition and enforcement case - Whether constitutional imperatives preclude any interpretation of provincial legislation or service ex juris rules as creating automatic or an irrebuttable presumption of jurisdiction over foreign parties - Whether the doctrine of comity dictates against the assertion of jurisdiction over foreign parties in an action when the adjudication of the issues will be academic, have no practical impact and serve no purpose - Whether a “good arguable case” standard applies to the determination of facts essential to the assertion of jurisdiction over a foreign party - Whether a real and substantial connection with the province is made out on these facts when the sole connection between it and any of the parties of the underlying case is the presence of an indirect Canadian subsidiary of a foreign defendant - Is the presence of assets a pre-requisite to the recognition and enforcement of a foreign judgment - What is the proper test to determine whether a provincial superior court has jurisdiction to recognize and enforce a foreign judgment against a non-party to the foreign judgment not domiciled in the province - Whether carrying on business in the province from an office in the province that bears no relation to the subject matter of the action and having an “economically significant relationship” with the judgment debtor are sufficient for there to be such jurisdiction - To what extent must a court faced with a jurisdictional challenge conduct a threshold examination of the merits of an allegation essential to jurisdiction - If and in what circumstances can a court that does not have jurisdiction to entertain a recognition and enforcement action against the judgment debtor, have jurisdiction for recognition and enforcement of the judgment against a party which was not a party to the original action - Whether, as a matter of jurisdiction simpliciter over a domestic defendant present in Ontario, the Court must make a determination whether there is a real and substantial connection between the domestic defendant and the subject matter of the action - Whether, as a matter of jurisdiction simpliciter, the Court must determine if the assets of a 100 percent owned subsidiary are exigible to satisfy the final judgment against the parent.

The respondent plaintiffs brought an action in Ecuador against Chevron Corporation for harm caused to their lands and interests by environmental pollution. They seek to have their final judgment of US$9.51 billion in damages recognized and enforced in Ontario against the appellants. The appellants have not attorned to the jurisdiction and brought motions for orders setting aside service ex juris, declaring that the court has no jurisdiction, and dismissing or permanently staying the action. The Ontario Superior Court of Justice dismissed the motions to set aside service but granted the motions for a stay of action on the basis that there was no reasonable prospect of recovery since Chevron Corporation held no assets in Ontario.

Lower Court Rulings

May 1, 2013
Ontario Superior Court of Justice

CV-12-9808-00CL,2013 ONSC 2527
Motions to set aside service dismissed; motions for a stay of action granted
December 17, 2013
Court of Appeal for Ontario

C57019, 2013 ONCA 758
Respondents’ appeal allowed, stay of action set aside; cross-appeals by applicants dismissed