SCC cites research by three Faculty of Law professors in a decision on contractual performance

Work by Professors Shannon O'Byrne, Tamara Buckwold and Mitchell McInnes cited

06 January 2021

The Supreme Court of Canada has cited three professors of the University of Alberta Faculty of Law in a recent decision.

Professors Shannon O'Byrne, Tamara Buckwold and Mitchell McInnes were cited in C.M. Callow Inc. v. Zollinger.

The Court considered the scope of the duty of to act honestly in contractual performance, established in the landmark 2014 Supreme Court of Canada decision in Bhasin v Hrynew.

Callow demonstrates that a contracting party who has not expressly lied may be in breach of the duty of honesty when they “knowingly mislead” their counterparty regarding the intended exercise of a contractual right. The respondents breached the duty by invoking an early-termination clause knowing that their representatives’ conduct had led the appellant to believe that the contract would continue to the end of its two-year term.

The professors’ cited research was:

  • O’Byrne, Shannon and Ronnie Cohen. “The Contractual Principle of Good Faith and the Duty of Honesty in Bhasin v. Hrynew” (2015), 53 Alta. L.R. 1.

  • Buckwold, Tamara. “The Enforceability of Agreements to Negotiate in Good Faith: The Impact of Bhasin v. Hrynew and the Organizing Principle of Good Faith in Common Law Canada” (2016), 58 Can. Bus. L.J. 1.

  • McInnes, Mitchell. “The Reason to Reverse: Unjust Factors and Juristic Reasons” (2012), 92 Boston U L Rev. 1049.