Weilers LLP

Adverse Possession and Municipal Lands

September 8, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik THE ISSUE Is adverse possession available to extinguish the title of a municipality in favour of someone who claims adverse possession? The answer, says the Ontario Court of Appeal, is “sometimes”. BACKGROUND First, almost all land in Ontario, and especially in Thunder Bay and Northwestern Ontario, is in the […]

Municipal Bylaws and Injunctions: a Brief Update

August 4, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik We have written before about the advantages that municipalities have in enforcing bylaws through injunctions. Superior Court judges have relaxed the test to grant an injunction in a number of cases, but they have not gone about it in exactly the same way. THE ISSUE The source for consistency […]

Bad Faith, Illegality And By-Laws

May 2, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik THE ISSUE You might think that a by-law which is passed with procedural illegalities would be routinely quashed in court. The law is not that simple. THE CASE In Larabie Estate v. Moonbeam (Township) the Ontario Court of Appeal upholds a Superior Court judgment dismissing an application to have […]

A Million Dollar Parking Ticket?

January 27, 2023 By Mark Mikulasik THE ISSUE No, not really a million-dollar parking ticket. Just a million dollar fine for civil contempt arising from a dispute about illegal parking. The hurt in your pocketbook would be just as painful. THE CASE In Caledon (Town) v. Darzi Holdings Ltd., the individual appellant’s construction company improperly […]

Pecuniary Interest and Patios

October 19, 2022 By Mark Mikulasik What community of interest allows a municipal councillor to participate in debate and voting on an issue in which they have interest? THE ISSUE We all expect councillors or members of local boards to act in good faith for the benefit of the community, not their own interests. Most […]

The Reason For Reasons

October 14, 2022 By Nick Melchiorre …the exercise of public power must be justified, intelligible and transparent, not in the abstract, but to the individuals subject to it.” So said the Supreme Court of Canada in Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v. Vavilov, the 2019 case which restated the approach that courts take to a […]

Building Permit Liability Update

September 14, 2022 By Brian Babcock In September 2021 we posted an article entitled “Building Permit Liability” which focused on hidden liability risks lurking in old building permit files. It was based upon the trial decision in Breen v. The Corporation of the Township of Lake of Bays. That decision toddled off to the Ontario […]

Penalties for Municipal Conflict of Interest

August 12, 2022 By Mark Mikulasik The appropriate penalty for a municipal conflict of interest has been controversial as long as there has been a Municipal Conflict of Interest Act in Ontario. Prior to the 2017 amendments to the Act, if there was found to be a conflict of interest, the presiding judge had no […]

Municipal By-Laws and Injunctions

July 23, 2022 By Mark Mikulasik Ontario municipalities are in a special position with respect to obtaining injunctions for a breach of a bylaw. Section 440 of the Municipal Act, 2001 provides that a municipality may apply to the court for an order restraining any contravention of its bylaws in addition to any other remedies […]

How NOT to Argue About a Building Permit

July 10, 2022 By Brian Babcock The Building Code Act protects important public interests including public safety and consumer protection. Because of this, the courts ensure that the provisions of the building code and the Act are enforced. The Divisional Court reinforced these principles in a recent appeal from an application judge. THE ISSUE How […]