Toronto Joint Venture Dispute Lawyers

International Joint Venture Arbitration Lawyers

Disputes within a joint venture disrupt the project and, if not dealt with quickly and discreetly, may affect the viability of the joint venture project.

Choose Gilbertson Davis LLP

Our senior commercial litigators have in-depth experience in a wide variety of businesses and industries which allows us to have a quick understanding of your business and the dispute at hand.

We have knowledge and experience in the management of business disputes including the urgent equitable remedies available through the courts. We have extensive experience in the court procedures and process, including that of the Commercial List, a part of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice which is dedicated to the resolution of eligible Toronto-based business and commercial litigation.

We can provide early and effective strategic advice and representation.

Joint Venture Disputes | International Joint Venture Arbitration

Joint Venture – Is it a Partnership? 

Joint ventures are often established to synergize what each member of the joint venture can add to the consortium. Sometimes a joint venture is the structure chosen because those members engaged in the joint venture are located in different jurisdictions, a consideration which may be pivotal for its success. While invariably created by contractual agreement, some joint ventures have been held by the courts to be a partnership, while others have been determined to be merely contractual, without comprising a partnership. A myriad of considerations have been used by the courts in determining whether a joint venture is a partnership. Issues have also arisen concerning the management and operational structure of a joint venture and whether such structure necessarily results in the joint venture being found to comprise a partnership.

One of our lawyers recently spoke on the “The Differences (Legal and Drafting) Between a Partnership and a Joint Venture – Understanding the Significant Consequences”, as a panelist at the Law Society of Upper Canada Continuing Professional Development program, The Annotated Partnership Agreement 2015. 

Fiduciary Duties of Partners | Contractual Duty of Honest Performance

Historically the distinction between partner and contractor was important, since the law only imposed a fiduciary duty upon partners, and not simple contractors. However, more recent authority has held, in some circumstances, that such duties also exist for mere contracting parties. Moreover, the Supreme Court of Canada recently held in Bhasin v. Hrynew, 2014 SCC 71 that “It is appropriate to recognize a new common law duty that applies to all contracts as a manifestation of the general organizing principle of good faith: a duty of honest performance, which requires the parties to be honest with each other in relation to the performance of their contractual obligations.”

Accordingly, should the interpretation of the joint venture agreement or the issue of performance be governed by the laws of Canada, the purely “contractual” joint venture may require the members of the joint venture to act towards other partners to the joint venture with a duty akin to a partner’s fiduciary duty. The circumstances of each case and the application of governing law must be uniquely considered in determining that issue.

International Joint Venture Arbitration | Recognition and Enforcement of International Arbitration Award

International joint ventures are often the chosen structure in international mining, development, infrastructure, energy, transportation, large-scale or cross-border construction and other projects.  Those in particular industries, such as telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, chemical engineering, cosmetics, petrochemical, automotive, ship-building and other heavy industries sometimes chose the international joint venture structure.

Most international joint venture agreements require that the parties to refer disputes to international arbitration. The application of the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, also known as the “New York Convention”, and whether it applies to the joint venture members, is often one of the considerations in deciding to include a mandatory arbitration clause in a joint venture agreement. The resolution of disputes under third party supply contacts and lending agreements are usually not covered by a joint venture arbitration agreement and may still require disposition by the local courts.

Success in obtaining early injunctive relief often results in early dispute resolution.

Our team of lawyers are leading practitioners and provide sound advice and effective representation in time sensitive matters. When there is need for immediate assistance from the courts, clients turn to lawyers who have acted in such proceedings before. We are experienced in matters requiring immediate litigation response, for both local and international clients.

We have strength and experience in advising foreign clients involved in litigation or arbitration in Ontario and across its borders.

Some of our lawyers have been admitted and practised law in foreign jurisdictions (including England, Bermuda and New York), have both foreign and local legal education, including in the U.S. and U.K. and a number of our lawyers and law clerks speak languages including French, Japanese, Portuguese, Italian, Russian and Cantonese.

We are often consulted by those located in the United States, and in the past have been consulted by or retained in litigation by those (or matters located) in Alaska, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island, Tennessee and Texas and Washington. Internationally, we have also been involved in litigation or arbitration with clients (or matters) located in Angola, Australia, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Dubai, England, Germany, Greece,  Guyana, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Iran, Kuwait, Liberia, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, PRC, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland and United Arab Emirates.

We have significant courtroom experience, in important motions, trials and appeals at all levels of the courts in Ontario and Canada (including the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Federal Court and the Supreme Court of Canada). Some of our lawyers have conducted arbitration of business disputes, both locally and in international arbitration.

We offer ethical, cost efficient and effective legal services through careful management of your business dispute.

Please contact Gilbertson Davis LLP to arrange an initial consultation.

Our Lawyers


John L. Davis

Managing Partner
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David Alderson

Counsel – Commercial Litigation
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Robert Kalanda

Associate
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R. Lee Akazaki

Partner
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Andrew Ottaway

Associate
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Bianca Thomas

Associate
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