The Court of Appeal decision in Michel v. Spirit Financial Inc. includes the following paragraph that compels me to pedantry:
 The trial judge made a finding of fact that all the advances made by Michel to Kramer and Spirit were loans. The loans were advanced from 2000 to 2009, during which time the Limitations Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. L.15 was largely replaced by the Limitations Act, 2002, S.O. 2002, c. 24, Sched. B. On January 1, 2004 the basic limitation period for demand loans was changed from six years from the date of the loan to two years from the date of the demand: Hare v. Hare, 2006 CanLII 41650 (ON CA), 83 O.R. (3d) 766 (C.A.), at para. 11 and Limitations Act, 2002, at s. 5.
Here are the issues:
- The Limitations Act didn’t change the limitation of demand loans when it came into force on January 1, 2004. Section 5(3) wasn’t present in the initial version of the Limitations Act, which didn’t address the discovery of a claim arising from demand obligations at all.The Court cites Hare, but Hare actually holds that, under the version of the Limitations Act in force when it was decided, a demand obligation was actionable as of the funds being advanced and not the date of the demand. This was manageable under the Former Act, which applied a six-year limitation period, but it’s problematic with a two-year limitation period. This caused the Legislature to amend the Limitations Act in 2008 to add s. 5(3), which makes presumptive discovery of a claim arising from a demand loan the date of the demand for repayment.
Frankly, it’s surprising that the Court would misstate the development of the law so materially.
- It’s misleading to say that the Limitations Act “largely” replaced the Former Act. The Limitations Act and the RPLA together entirely replaced the Former Act. To be fair, the RPLA is Part I of the Former Act repackaged, and in that sense the Limitations Act only partially replaced the Former Act. Nevertheless, this statement suggests that some part of the Former Act remains in force. It doesn’t.