Master Robertson

3.68: Court options to deal with significant deficiencies
13.6: Pleadings: general requirements
13.7: Pleadings: other requirements

Case Summary

Three Defendants (the “Counsel Defendants”) sought to have the claims against them struck pursuant to Rule 3.68(2)(b). After the Plaintiff and another Defendant, Ms. Schneider, agreed to settle a dispute, they failed to “close” the settlement. The Plaintiff accused Ms. Schneider and the Counsel Defendants who represented her of purposely undermining the deal and claimed against the Defendants for breach of the settlement contract. In addition to other arguments relating to striking the claims against them, the Counsel Defendants argued that the Statement of Claim did not particularize the serious allegations of intentional torts, as required by Rule 13.7.

Master Robertson noted that in an Application under Rule 3.68, no evidence is submitted. Master Robertson also noted that the bar on considering evidence did not preclude the Court from reviewing the Pleadings as a whole, or considering “the underlying litigation context of a claim” in order to determine whether a Claim had a reasonable prospect of success. The analysis should be conducted under the assumption that the facts as pleaded are true.

Master Robertson concluded that the allegations were insufficiently pleaded: the Statement of Claim set out a claim of inducement of breach of contract but that the Plaintiff’s complaints did not create a cause of action against the Counsel Defendants. Accordingly, the claim against the Counsel Defendants was struck.

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