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Beals V. Saldanha Notes

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BEALS V. SALDANHA FACTS The appellants, residents of Ontario, were the owners of a vacant lot in Sarasota County, Florida. They sold the lot to the respondents. A dispute arose as a result of that transaction. The respondents eventually commenced two actions against the appellants in Florida. Only the second action is relevant to this appeal. The appellants received notice at all stages of the litigation and defended the first action, which was dismissed without prejudice. A defence was filed to the second action without the knowledge of the Saldanhas. The appellants chose not to defend any of the three subsequent amendments to the second action. Pursuant to Florida law, the failure to defend the amendments had the effect of not defending the second action and the appellants were subsequently noted in default. Damages of US $260,000 were awarded by a jury convened to assess damages. The damages were not paid and an action was started in Ontario to enforce the Florida judgment. HOLDING "Real and substantial connection" - conceded It was properly conceded by the parties, as explained below, in both the trial court and Court of Appeal, that the Florida court had jurisdiction over the respondents' action pursuant to the "real and substantial connection" test set out in Morguard Investments Ltd. v. De Savoye, [1990] 3 S.C.R. 1077 (S.C.C.). As a result, the issues raised in this appeal were limited to the application and scope of the defences available to a domestic defendant seeking to have a Canadian court refuse enforcement of a foreign judgment. Applying "real and substantial connection" to foreign judgments The question arises whether the "real and substantial connection" test, which is applied to interprovincial judgments, should apply equally to the recognition of foreign judgments. For the reasons that follow, I conclude that it should. While there are compelling reasons to expand the test's application, there does not appear to be any principled reason not to do so. Citing Moran: "By tendering his products in the market place directly or through normal distributive channels, a manufacturer ought to assume the burden of defending those products wherever they cause harm as long as the forum into which the

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