Case of the Day: Lee v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia

The case of the day is Lee v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia (W.D. Wash. 2017). ICBC is owned by the British Columbia government, and it provides universal automobile insurance in British Columbia. It insured Mi Joo Tour and Travel Ltd., which operated tour buses. Lee was a passenger on a tour that began and ended in Washington.

The bus was involved in a serious crash. Lee brought a claim against Mi Joo in arbitration, and the case settled. ICBC was involved in the negotiations and paid Lee $10 million (Lee was an additional insured under the ICBC policy). Lee then sued ICBC for breach of contract, tortious breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and anticipated breach of the Washington Insurance Fair Conduct Act. ICBC moved to dismiss under the FSIA.

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Case of the Day: Silver Star Alpine Meadows v. Quinlan

The case of the day is Silver Star Alpine Meadows Development, Ltd. v. Quinlan (Cal. Ct. App. 2016). Lora and Stephen Quinlan had a contract to purchase lots in an undeveloped subdivision in a British Columbia ski resort. They refused to close, believing the seller, Silver Star, had changed the topography of the lots in a way that would disadvantage them. Silver Star sued in a British Columbia court. The court held that Silver Star had performed, that the Quinlans had breached their obligation, and that Silver Star had sought to mitigate its damages. Judgment was for more than $1.1 million (CDN), because in the relevant time period the value of the lots had declined precipitously. Silver Star sought recognition and enforcement of the judgment in California. The Quinlans counterclaimed for fraud and argued, in defense, that the contract had a liquidated damages provision that the British Columbia court should have applied. They claimed that the Canadian court’s mistake meant that it would be contrary to public policy to recognize the judgment.
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