Canpotex Shipping Services Limited, et al. v. ING Bank N.V., et al.

(Federal) (Civil) (By Leave)


Commercial law – Contracts – Interpretation – Parol evidence rule – Civil Procedure – Interpleader – Whether evidence identifying the agreed contractual terms is inadmissible pursuant to the parol evidence rule – Whether interpleader proceedings are appropriate to address two conflicting claims, if they are capable of being brought in rem as well as in personam – Federal Court Rules, SOR/98-106, Rule 108.


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The applicant time charterer sought the direction of the courts on who is legally entitled to be paid for marine fuel delivered to two vessels. There are competing claims between a third party supplier of the “bunkers” and the receivers and creditor of the entity with whom the timer charter contracted for delivery of fuel to the vessels. The Federal Court determined that the bulk of the monies was to be paid to the fuel supplier, upon which the liability of applicant time charterer and shipowners would be extinguished. The Federal Court of Appeal held that the lower court erred in determining that a claim for a maritime lien could be extinguished as part of the interpleader relief and in relying on parol evidence to determine which contractual terms applied. It allowed the appeal, set aside the decision and returned it to the Federal Court for determination in accordance with the appellate reasons.

Lower Court Rulings

September 23, 2015
Federal Court

T-109-15, 2015 FC 1108
Order that Petrobulk is to be fully paid out of funds and all liability of applicants is extinguished
March 10, 2017
Federal Court of Appeal

A-462-15, 2017 FCA 47
Appeal allowed; FC decision set aside and returned to FC for reconsideration in accordance with FCA reasons for judgment