Damages - Section 137.1(9)

AuthorDavid A. Potts; Erin Stoik
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Damages—Section 137.1(9)
Courts of Justice Act, RSO 1990 c C43:
137.1(9) If, in dismissing a proceeding under this section, the judge f‌inds that
the responding party brought the proceeding in bad faith or for an improper
purpose, the judge may award the moving party such damages as the judge
considers appropriate.
Explanation of Section .() by the Ontario Court of Appeal
United Soils Management Ltd v Mohammed, 2019 ONCA 128 is a decision by
the Ontario Court of Appeal relating to two appeals that were heard together.
The cases originated with defamation actions by United Soils Management
Ltd (United Soils) against two individuals—Katie Mohammed and Kayt Bar-
clay— who expressed concerns on social media about the expansion of the
company’s dumping rights at a gravel pit it operated and the ef‌fect on the
local water supply. Both Mohammed and Barclay brought motions under
section 137.1, which were granted and the actions against them dismissed.
United Soils appealed both decisions. After f‌inding that both proceed-
ings had been properly dismissed by the motion court judges, Doherty JA
reviewed the awards of damages and considered the proper application of
section 137.1(9) at paras 30–33:
[30] The motion judge awarded Ms. Mohammed damages of $7,500. In
doing so he found that prior motions brought by the appellant were “an
objective demonstration of improper purpose”: Mohammed, at para. 78. The
motion judge also pointed out that the appellant instituted the proceeding

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