1664992 ALBERTA LTD v PADOAN, 2018 ABQB 348

lee j

1.2: Purpose and intention of these rules
3.65: Permission of Court to amendment before or after close of pleadings
3.74: Adding, removing or substituting parties after close of pleadings

Case Summary

The Plaintiffs appealed a Master’s Decision refusing to permit the addition of certain individual realtors as Defendants. The Action involved a dispute arising from an asset purchase agreement between the Plaintiffs as the purchasers, and the Defendants as the vendors (the “APA”). The realtors had assisted both the Plaintiffs and the Defendants with the transaction.

Justice Lee referred to Rules 1.2, 3.65, and 3.74, and reviewed leading Alberta jurisprudence that sets out the classic test for amending pleadings: generally, a pleading may be amended, no matter how careless or late the party seeking the amendment, subject to four major exceptions: (a) the amendment would cause serious prejudice to the opposing party, not compensable in costs; (b) the amendment requested is hopeless; (c) unless permitted by statute, the amendments seeks to add a new party or new cause of action after the expiry of a limitation period; and (d) there is an element of bad faith associated with the failure to plead the amendment in the first instance. Justice Lee noted that hopeless amendments are not permitted and an amendment will be hopeless where it does not disclose a cause of action, the amendment is inconsistent with the record, or if it is clear and obvious that there is no triable issue.

Lee J. reviewed the record and observed that the Plaintiffs had provided multiple Affidavits, and that the evidence in the most recent Affidavit conflicted with the Plaintiffs’ previous evidence. After reviewing the APA, Justice Lee found that the terms of the APA prevented a finding of liability against the realtors and thus the amendments were hopeless. Additionally, the amendments were limitations barred. For these reasons, Lee J. dismissed the Appeal with Costs.

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