Intellectual property, aboriginal law, immigration disputes in this week's roundup
Goodmans LLP, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP, Gowling WLG lead this week’s litigation roundup in the federal court for intellectual property disputes. The court also heard multiple lawsuits involving aboriginal law, immigration and refugee law.
The Federal Court heard multiple trademark infringement lawsuits, including a case filed by RE/MAX LLC against Save Max Real Estate Inc. Norton Rose Fulbright LLP acted on behalf of RE/MAX, while Goodmans LLP represented Max Real Estate. Fielding Wines Limited also filed a trademark infringement claim against Backyard Vineyards Corp., in which Gowling WLG LLP and Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP represented the parties.
In the area of industrial design infringement, the law firms in court included DLA Piper LLP for 2660722 Ontario Inc., Ridout & Maybee for Vanpak Limited, Bereskin & Parr LLP for Eurofase Inc., Smart & Biggar for Crystal World Inc., and MBM Intellectual Property Law for 2660722 Ontario Inc.
Bereskin & Parr LLP and Miller Thomson LLP acted as the legal counsels in a patent infringement dispute between Arysta Lifescience North America LLC and Agracity Crop.
Field LLP represented Floyd Bertrand in an action pursuant to aboriginal law. Bertrand is a member of the Acho Dene Koe community, who sought an order from the court to compel the tribe to call a new election and appoint a new electoral officer. Bertrand asserted that the First Nation’s April 2021 election had many irregularities, including the discounting of mail-in ballots received after the election date and the disallowance of voters online.
Another electoral dispute within a First Nation community was filed in the Federal Court by Robert Houle against the Swan River First Nation and its Chief and Council. Houle challenged the refusal of the tribe’s Electoral Officer to accept Houle’s nomination as Councillor in the 2019 general election because he had not been residing on the reserve for at least one year prior to May 3, 2019, in accordance with the First Nation’s customary election regulations. Houle was represented by Emery Jamieson LLP. Swan River First Nation was represented by Parlee McLaws.
Koskie Minsky LLP represented the plaintiffs in a proposed class proceeding against the federal government, represented by the Attorney General of Canada. The proposed class is composed of all Metis and non-status Indian persons who were affected by the “Sixties Scoop,” the Canadian practice of taking Aboriginal children and placing them for adoption with non-Aboriginal parents. The plaintiffs alleged that as a result of the “scooping up” between the 1960s and the 1990s, the affected children lost their identity as Aboriginal persons and suffered mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. The plaintiffs contended that the federal government breached its fiduciary and common law duty of care that it owed to the class members.
The Federal Court heard a proposed class proceeding involving the damages caused by the Residential Schools Policy. The claim was filed by members of the Sechelt Indian Band and the Tk’emlups Band. The plaintiffs were represented by Fulton & Company LLP, Peter Grant & Associates, and Phillips Gill LLP. It was earlier reported that the court also heard a proposed class proceeding filed by members of the Siksika Nation, which likewise alleged damages caused by the residential schools to First Nations children.
The Federal Court also continued to hear a lawsuit involving a claim of $10 billion in damages from the federal government for its discriminatory funding policies pursuant to which child and family services for First Nation Children living on Reserves and in the Yukon were underfunded. The plaintiffs alleged that these policies have “created an incentive to remove First Nation Children from their homes and place them in care as the first – not the last – resort when they need child and family services and created the ‘Removed Child Class.’” The action was filed by the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) acting as Trustee on behalf of the plaintiffs. They were represented by Strosberg Sasso Sutts LLP and Nahwegahbow Corbiere.
In the area of immigration and refugee law, the firms present in court included Waldman and Associates, Watters Law Office, Lithwick Law, Pax Law Corporation, Ashmalla LLP, Caron & Partners LLP, Edelmann and Company, Elliott Law Professional Corp., Bellissimo Law Group PC, and Vecina Law Professional Corp.