Game Winner! Chicken Dinner! Legalization of Single-Event Sports Betting in Canada

On February 17, 2021, the House of Commons overwhelmingly passed the second reading of Bill C-218[1], which seeks to decriminalize sports betting on single events, with 303 votes in favour of the bill and 15 opposed[2]. The current prohibition on single-event sports betting is pursuant to section 207(4)(b) of the Criminal Code of Canada[3], which prevents this type of “lottery scheme”. Bill C-218 is a private member’s bill that was introduced in February 2020 by Kevin Waugh, Conservative Member of Parliament for Saskatoon-Grasswood.

The current sports betting regime only allows Canadian entities to book…

Categories: Business Law

Changes to the Federal Divorce Act

New amendments to the federal Divorce Act, meant to come into force last July but pushed back due to the COVID-19 pandemic, have come into force this month.

These are the first substantial changes to the Divorce Act in more than 20 years.

The changes to the Divorce Act include updated provisions addressing family violence and relocation.

The Act defines family violence in a holistic sense. It does not solely cover physical violence. The definition includes harassment or stalking, neglect, psychological abuse, financial abuse, destruction of property, and specific threats. It also includes the direct or indirect exposure of a…

Categories: Family Law

Owen Bird Celebrates International Women’s Day by Giving to the BC Society of Transition Houses

Happy International Women’s Day!

Last year the firm celebrated history-making women in law and highlighted women who inspired us. This year, we wanted to give back and fundraise to support women with experiences of domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence (“IPV”). IPV has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic[1] and women make up 80% of police-reported IPV victims in Canada[2].

To this end, the Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Involvement Committee raised funds to support the BC Society of Transition Houses (the “Society”). The Society is a “member-based, provincial umbrella organization that, through leadership, support and…

Categories: Announcements

St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation Future Leaders – PIXEL Moments

We are pleased to announce that Owen Bird Law Corporation has donated to the St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation Future Leaders – PIXEL Moments. PIXEL Moments is a large scale augmented reality art mural, to be painted by Andrea Wan, which will be above the London Drugs on Granville and Robson this spring.  It is a micro-donation campaign to raise funds and awareness for mental health programs at St. Paul’s Hospital.   More information on the project can be found at: https://pixelmoments.org/.

Categories: Announcements

The Limitation Period Suspension Ends on March 25, 2021

and Taahaa Patel, Articled Student

The provincial government has announced that suspended limitation periods, or deadlines by which a claimant must commence court proceedings, will resume running on March 25, 2021.

Background

After the provincial government declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it suspended the running of limitation periods, which require that a party take certain steps, such as filing a claim, before a particular deadline.

The Ministerial Orders

Initially, under the Emergency Program Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 111 (the “EPA”), the government issued two Ministerial Orders (the “Orders”):

On March 26, 2020, the government suspended…

Discretionary Rights within Contracts Must be Exercised in Good Faith

In addition to the precise obligations required from parties to a contract, a common feature seen among contracting parties are options more formally referred to as “discretional rights”. As the name suggests, these rights afford parties certain latitude in the manner in which contractual rights may be performed. Although these tools afford parties flexibility with respect to contractual performance, the Supreme Court of Canada (the “SCC”) has recently decided that these rights (or options) must be exercised in good faith.

The general doctrine of “good faith” is a longstanding organizing principal recognized under Canadian contract law. This duty imposes a…

Brian Cheng Featured on FACL BC Podcast

Owen Bird civil litigator Brian Cheng was featured as a guest on an episode of The Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers (FACL BC) podcast, hosted by Chilwin Cheng.

FACL BC is a diverse coalition of Asian Canadian legal professionals in British Columbia. Its podcast currently features a three-part series on Asian litigators practicing in the Lower Mainland.

As a featured Asian litigator, Brian discusses his experiences with race in the U.S., where he went to law school. He shares what the best (and worst) things are about being able…

Categories: Announcements

Owen Bird is Pleased to Announce New Shareholders to the Firm

Owen Bird Law Corporation is pleased to announce that Tony Anderson and Brian Cheng became shareholders of the firm effective January 1, 2021. Tony and Brian have made significant contributions to Owen Bird and its clients during their years as associates.

Tony practices in the areas of corporate and commercial law. He has broad experience in representing lenders and borrowers on secured debt financings, construction lending, asset‑based lending, lease financing, acquisition and merger financing, loan syndications and standard operating and term credit facilities.

Brian Cheng is a member of our Litigation Group with a focus on commercial litigation and insurance defence….

Categories: Announcements

Owen Bird Welcomes Heather Frydenlund

Owen Bird is delighted to announce that Heather Frydenlund has joined our firm as the newest member of our Litigation Law Group. Heather is an associate lawyer with a practice focused primarily on Insolvency and Restructuring Law and Administrative Law.

Heather obtained her Bachelor’s Degree, Economics and Psychology (Double Major) from Simon Fraser University. She then attended the University of Alberta, Faculty of Law and obtained her Juris Doctor in 2015. Heather was called to the Alberta Bar in 2016 and has been employed as an associate at Parlee McLaws LLP in Edmonton, Alberta for the last 5 years. Heather…

Categories: Announcements