April 06, 2017
The Ontario Court of Appeal’s recent decision to overturn an earlier ruling in the case of Moore v. Sweet has provided insight on the complicated issues that intertwine family and insurance law. The Court of Appeal’s decision hinged on whether constructive trust is a “remedy in only two situations [where] unjust enrichment and wrongful acts have taken place.” The case also examined if Insurance Act provisions provided “juristic reason for the enrichment of one of the parties.” Law Times sought senior associate Jeremy Opolsky, who represented the appellant in the case, to weigh in on the discussion. Below is an excerpt from the article.
The court found that the judge erred in relying on equitable assignment, as it was not argued in the pleadings.
A two-judge majority also argued that the Insurance Act, under which Sweet had been designated the irrevocable beneficiary, provided a valid juristic reason for Sweet’s enrichment.
Therefore, there could be no finding of unjust enrichment. Jeremy Opolsky, the lawyer who represented Sweet on the appeal, says the majority’s decision accurately reflects what he thinks the laws surrounding unjust enrichment and constructive costs should be.
“Justice Blair has a very crisp and clean way of cutting to the core of what unjust enrichment is supposed to be and how to distinguish between when and when not to apply the doctrine,” he says.
To read the full article, click here.