Commercial Real Estate Disputes

For many people, buying a home will be the biggest purchase one makes during their lifetime. While most recognize the significance of signing an agreement of purchase and sale on the dotted line, many might be surprised to know there are substantial legal consequences that can flow from dealings at much earlier stages of the...
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Buying real estate in Ontario is a big investment. If you choose to own a property with other people (which we will call your “co-owners”), it is important that you are aligned with what will happen to the property and how it will be managed. Part of the reason why being aligned with your co-owners...
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What is a letter of intent? A letter of intent is a written agreement between two parties that outlines the terms and main aspects of the business arrangement.  Unlike a contractual agreement in which parties intend to be bound to the terms of the agreement, a letter of intent is meant to be a draft...
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Most real estate transactions, whether you are a business owner entering a commercial lease, or a family purchasing a home, you are almost certainly using a real estate agent. All real estate agents owe their clients a duty of care. This duty requires the real estate agent to act in a way that is usual...
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Oral Agreements for Dealings with Land According to the Statute of Frauds,[1] a contract regarding the use of land must be in writing. This includes agreements for the purchase, sale, lease, etc. of land. What happens when you want to enforce an oral agreement concerning land that is not in writing? According to the Ontario...
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A significant portion of a real estate agent’s income is commission. Typically, commission is only paid where a sale is completed. However, some courts have interpreted that a commission is still due and owing even if the transaction is not completed. The Listing Agreement As with any contract, it is important to read and understand...
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There is a common misconception in real estate transactions that the seller has unequal bargaining power because they are typically the one to draft the contract. This is incorrect. In contract law, a fundamental principle, known as contra proferentem, recognizes that, where there is any ambiguity, or more than one interpretation, in a contract, that...
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Many times, parties treat their obligations in real estate transitions as an afterthought, and then fail to close on transactions. These failed transactions emphasize the role and responsibility of the court in determining whether a party has violated the agreement, and to hold that party accountable. In a recent case, Tega Homes (Attika) Inc. v....
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An agreement for purchase and sale of a property is a contract between two parties, which is a buyer and a seller. Both parties are obligated to take reasonable steps to ensure that the agreement of purchase and sale is closed and the sale occurs. It is not always clear what steps the parties should...
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The residential real estate market is booming. Buyers often decide whether to purchase a house in a matter of hours or days. So, what happens if the buyer realizes that the square footage of the house is less than advertised? This issue was recently addressed in Issa v. Wilson, 2020 ONCA 756 and Lamba v....
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Judges have a broad discretion to award various remedies to parties in a lawsuit. The most commonly sought and awarded remedy is monetary damages or compensation. In some circumstances monetary compensation may be inadequate to appropriately compensate a party for the loss he or she will suffer. Therefore, judges also have the power to award...
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As homeowners continue to work from home in response to the provincial lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, some are realizing that they need more space. Others appreciate that they will continue to work from home indefinitely and living in the city may no longer be necessary as they may be able to afford a home located...
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Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board reported that over 11,000 homes were sold in Toronto during the month of September. That’s 42.3 per cent more sales closing than last September 2019! As such, purchasers should be aware of their responsibility to discover defects in a property prior to signing the Agreement...
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In recent months, we have witnessed the COVID-19 pandemic give rise to financial hardships and delays concerning real estate transactions. Specifically, two major issues may arise with regards to time is of the essence clauses and the pandemic. The first is where the financer or lender revokes its promise to provide funds to the purchaser...
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Ontarians are spending vast sums of money renovating and repairing their residential properties. A 2017 report published by the Altus Group indicates that Ontarians spent $24.1 billion on alterations, improvements and conversions while an additional $7.5 billion was spent on repairs. Behind each repair and renovation is a contractor.
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As a commercial litigation lawyer, most of the cases I deal with are based on breach of contract. The key issues for the judge to determine are: a) was there a contract; b) how should the contract be understood (what was each party required to do); c) was the contract breached or violated; and d)...
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