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Punitive Damages

Manitoba court awards wrongfully dismissed employee solicitor-client costs and punitive damages

Jurisdiction: - Manitoba
Sector: - First Nations

The decision in Lounsbury v. Dakota Tipi First Nation, 2011 MBQB 96 is unique in that the court awarded the plaintiff former employee both solicitor client costs and punitive damages because of the defendant employer's conduct.

The court had previously awarded the former employee $143,000 in notice period damages.

Solicitor-Client Costs

As the court stated, solicitor-client costs are or special costs "are intended to more closely represent a party's actual legal costs" (para 41). In the case, the court awarded solicitor-client costs on two basis:  read more »

Bombardier ordered to cease applying US national security standards when processing training requests for pilots

Jurisdiction: - Quebec
Sector: - Transportation

In Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse c. Bombardier inc. (Bombardier Aerospace Training Center), 2010 QCTDP 16, the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal ordered Bombardier to cease applying US national security standards when processing training requests for pilots seeking Canadian licences.

Aldona Gudas, a lawyer at Blakes, has written a summary of the decision (which is in English) in a Blakes bulletin that can be found here: "Bombardier to Pay Damages Under Quebec Human Rights Tribunal Decision" (February 18, 2011).

In her article, Ms. Gudas states that this decision:
 read more »

Employee who was “laid off” during recession was not required to return to same employer to mitigate damages

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - High Tech

Emmanuelle Renard ("Renard") was a valued with 12 years of service when her employer, Facet Decision Systems inc. ("Facet"), reluctantly laid her off in July 2009 because of the economic downturn.

Facet subsequently realized that it was not permitted to impose a layoff, and that the effect of a layoff was in fact a dismissal without cause. As such, a few months later, Facet offered to re-employ her in the same position.

Renard refused the offer of re-employment and instead commenced a wrongful dismissal lawsuit. Facet took the position that she had failed to mitigate her damages by not accepting her job back.

Court's Decision

Renard took the position that she was not required to return to Facet for three general reasons.

First, she argued that the relationship had broken down and become poisoned, making it impossible for her to continue working for Facet. The court rejected this argument, pointing to the following:  read more »