Following a three-day summary trial in the Supreme Court of British Columbia, Justice DeWitt-Van Oosten granted judgment in favour of Dairy Queen Canada, Inc. for breach of contract and passing-off against a franchisee in Richmond, British Columbia. The Court also dismissed the franchisee’s counterclaim against Dairy Queen for over $1,000,000 in damages for breach of contract and various breaches of the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000, including breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing.
In dismissing the franchisee’s claim in its entirety, the Court upheld a Mutual Cancellation and Release Agreement which acted as a complete bar to the claims asserted in the counterclaim. The Court rejected the franchisee’s arguments that the Mutual Cancellation and Release Agreement had been entered into under duress or should be disregarded on grounds of unconscionability.
Dairy Queen was represented at the hearing by Colin Pendrith, with support from franchise litigators Geoff Shaw and Carly Cohen, as well as Matthew Nied of Cassels Brock’s Vancouver office.