By: Joshua Sealy-Harrington
PDF Version: A Pricked Condom: Fraudulently Obtained Consent or No Consent in the First Place?
Case commented on: R v Hutchinson, 2014 SCC 19
This post discusses a recent decision from the Supreme Court of Canada addressing consent in the context of sexual assault. The Court was unanimous on its final destination: dismissing the appellant’s appeal of his conviction for sexual assault. However, the Court narrowly split, 4-3, on the path taken to get there. More specifically, the Court split on whether deliberately and secretly sabotaging a condom renders sexual activity with that condom non-consensual because the victim’s consent was obtained fraudulently or because she never consented in the first place. This post reviews these two alternate approaches, notes their subtle overlap, and concludes that the state of consent in Canadian law is left unclear following this decision.
On April 4, 2014, Can LII launched a new project called Can LII Connects. This site will provide summaries of and commentary on Canadian cases reported on Can LII. Case comments will be accessible via Can LII Connects and via the Can LII website, and Can LII Connects also has a blog. ABlawg was very pleased to be asked to participate in this project as one of a few law blogs to post historical content in time for the launch. To access ABlawg’s content on Can LII Connects, readers can use the Search function or choose to filter by Publisher. Readers can concur with comments on Can LII Connects, or add their own commentary. All new case comments on ABlawg will be cross-posted to Can LII Connects from here on in. We encourage our readers to check out this excellent new resource.
By: Nigel Bankes
PDF Version: Decision of the High Court of Australia of Interest to Canada’s Energy Bar
Decision commented on: Electricity Generation Corporation v Woodside Energy Ltd,  HCA 7
In this majority decision the High Court of Australia (HCA) concluded that the obligations of a seller under a gas purchase agreement (GSA) to use “reasonable endeavours” to provide the purchaser with a supplemental maximum daily quantity of gas (SMDQ) in addition to an agreed maximum daily quantity of gas (MDQ) did not require the seller to provide any gas at the SMDQ price when market opportunities emerged which afforded the seller the opportunity to sell all its available production beyond MDQ at a much higher price. While any case such as this turns on the particular language of the GSA in question, including the surrounding circumstances known to the parties and the commercial purpose or objects to be secured by the agreement, the case serves as a reminder that terms such as “best efforts” or “reasonable endeavours”, at least when viewed in the self-seeking paradigm of contract, may not offer much comfort to the counterparty in this sort of commercial arrangement.