Gaming tax case won’t be revisited

The Supreme Court of Canada will not hear an appeal from a Quebec company that sued the lawyers involved in a tax dispute over gaming machines.

From 1985-1992, Revenu Québec imposed sales tax on the use of gaming machines, such as ones used to play poker.

In 1989, 2731-9359 Québec Inc. was established to receive mandates from the companies distributing these gaming machines. It argued it should be reimbursed for the taxes paid, claiming about $15-20 million, at which time it retained the services of the defendants.

This was the first time the Quebec government was being challenged for taxing the gaming machines and as a result had to change the laws.

There was a series of administrative challenges to the assessments for 1985-89 and a test case. After the Quebec Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the test case in 1995, new claims were filed for 1991-92.
 
Due to disappointing results and financial losses, in 1998 Québec Inc. and others decided to sue the lawyers who were involved in the case for about $13 million, alleging professional misconduct.

Pierre Cantin of Lavery, de Billy, who represented the defendant lawyers, was surprised when the applicants filed for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court since the defendants had won the arguments at the Quebec Superior Court and Quebec Court of Appeal.

He says Québec Inc. and others obtained some reimbursement from the provincial government, but “the government plays hard ball in a case like that so they decided because of that the lawyers should be responsible. The courts said, ‘No way.’”

Free newsletter

The Canadian Legal Newswire is a FREE weekly newsletter that keeps you up to date on news and analysis about the Canadian legal scene. A separate InHouse Edition is delivered every two weeks, providing targeted news and information of interest to in-house counsel.

Please complete the form below to receive the weekly Canadian Legal Newswire and/or the Canadian Inhouse Legal Newswire.

Recent articles & video

Quebec taking harsh line on cannabis edibles

Will the conversation catalyzed by the Law Society of Ontario mean the end of articling?

Copyright law: set for an overhaul?

Corporate Counsel Survey 2019 closes on Monday, Aug 26

When Legal Aid is a political prop, Access to justice suffers

The subsidiary entity exposure conundrum

Most Read Articles

Immigration lawyers skeptical about consultant regulation

Canadian Judicial Council seeks leave to SCC in Girouard case

Becoming a techno-lawyer can you set you apart

B.C. animal law ruling means death for dangerous dogs