Successful Advocacy

While most cases come and go without significant attention, from time-to-time cases that raise an interesting point of law are published in 'reporters'. These cases are published so as to become the 'common law' and act as reference and resource material to aid legal professions put forth arguments based on prior decisions and to help judges decide future cases in a manner that helps ensure that cases with similar facts and issues are decided similarly to previous cases, thereby ensuring consistency within the law.  

Recently, in Crone v. Kilmer, which was a case involving allegations of failure to disclose a known dangerous latent defect within a realty transaction, Scott McEachern successfully represented the Defendant by arguing that the allegations that the Defendant had knowledge of the defect was pure speculation by the Plaintiff.  The results of the case were published in all three of the major case reporters including CanLII, WestLaw, and QuickLaw (the respective citations are 2013 CanLII 55833, 2013 CarswellOnt 12442 and [2013] O.J. No. 4010).

In Wilkinson v. Sneddon Insurance Brokers Limited, 2014 CanLII 78266 (ON SCSM), Scott successfully argued to clarify that the duty of care owed to clients by an insurance broker should include the duty to shop the marketplace of available insurance providers, or at the very least, inform the client of a failure to shop the marketplace.  Subsequently, Scott also successfully argued for extra costs; 2014 CanLII 78267

Other recent cases include, among many others:

  1. Representation in a Small Claims Court matter on behalf of a Plaintiff contractor pursuing a property owner and property manager for failure to pay for work performed.  The contractor provided services during the winter 2012/2013 but wasn't fully paid.  The property owner in failing to pay, alleged that the contractor over applied, and therefore over charged for, de-icing salt.  Scott's knowledge of prudent snow removal contracting operations gained from time spent on the Landscape Ontario Horticultural Trade Association (Snow Committee) helped Scott counter the arguments and a satisfactory settlement was reached. 

  2. Representation in a Small Claims Court matter on behalf of a Defendant contractor who was sued by a property owner for failure to properly perform basement waterproofing.  The contractor was advised ahead of trial to expect to 'lose' something; however, Scott put on a vigorous trial defence that helped reduce the contractor's liability to less than 20% of the damages claimed by the property owner.  In this case, the contractor learned a valuable lesson - walk away from a job opportunity when the property owner wants only a portion of the work that should be done!

  3. Representation in the Provincial Offences Court for a plumbing company charged with violating the Water Resources Act where the plumbing company unknowingly and unwittingly disrupted the water table interfering with the usual water well levels within a rural area.  A piece of equipment, used to control flow of water into a property owner's well was removed resulting in disruption of the surrounding water table and affecting the flow of water into neighbouring wells and causing an artificial drought.  When the neighbours sought assistance from the Ministry of the Environment it was soon learned that a plumber, unlicensed to do work on wells, had unwittingly caused the disruption.  Although the potential penalties were significant, a negotiated plea led to a substantially reduced, and affordable, fine against the plumbing company.