Summary

40898

Lihua Fu v. Ji Yao Wang also known as Jianyu Wang, Chiangxia LV carrying on business as a Partnership, Ji Yao Wang also known as Jianyu Wang, Changxia LV, 1146530 BC Ltd., Buffalo Properties Inc., and Buffalo Investment (Canada) Inc.

(British Columbia) (Civil) (By Leave)

Keywords

Private international law – Forum non conveniens – Injunctions – Plaintiff filing similar suits in British Columbia and China both alleging non-repayment of loan provided for financing real estate project in British Columbia – Foreign court assuming jurisdiction – Defendants applying to British Columbia Supreme Court for anti-suit injunction to restrain plaintiff from continuing lawsuit brought in China – Court of Appeal granting anti-suit injunction – Whether the Court of Appeal for British Columbia fundamentally altered the test for an anti-suit injunction as stated in Amchem Products Incorporated v. British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Board), [1993] 1 S.C.R. 897.

Summary

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The respondent, Mr. Wang, is involved in property development in B.C. The corporate respondents are companies controlled by Mr. Wang and his wife, Ms. Lv. The applicant, Ms. Fu, alleges that she loaned $3.65 million to Mr. Wang and/or his companies for financing real estate projects in B.C. The respondents admit that Ms. Fu advanced the funds but say she invested in a failed real estate project. Ms. Fu commenced an action in the Supreme Court of British Columbia (“BCSC”) and, later, also commenced an action in China claiming recovery of the same debt. Mr. Wang and Ms. Lv filed an application in the Chinese court objecting to that court’s jurisdiction over the dispute. That application was dismissed. An appeal was dismissed. The respondents then filed an application in the BCSC for an anti-suit injunction to restrain Ms. Fu from continuing her claim in China. The BCSC relied on the test established in Amchem Products Incorporated v. British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Board), [1993] 1 S.C.R. 897. It dismissed the application, concluding that there was a reasonable basis for the Chinese court to have refused to decline jurisdiction. The British Columbia Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, holding that the BCSC erred in finding that the Chinese court assumed jurisdiction in a manner consistent with the principles of forum non conveniens.

Lower Court Rulings

November 18, 2021
Supreme Court of British Columbia

2022 BCSC 2099, S-215802
Respondents’ application for anti-suit injunction dismissed
June 14, 2023
Court of Appeal for British Columbia (Vancouver)

2023 BCCA 247, CA48754
Appeal allowed; anti-suit injunction issued