Paterson v. Skyline Hotels and Resorts Inc., 2018 ONSC 5716

The Plaintiff was seriously injured in a snowboarding accident at a resort owned by the Defendant Skyline. He sued Skyline, the individual who struck him on the ski hill, and the school board that had arranged the trip. After suffering his injury, the Plaintiff was kept at Bellwoods Centre for Community Living. In a separate action, he sued Bellwoods for abuse and mistreatment he allegedly experienced at the home. Skyline sought to issue a Third Party Claim in the present action against Bellwoods. Bellwoods argued that the claim was untenable because the Plaintiff was only seeking damages for the negligence of the three named Defendants and that the events at Bellwoods were separate such that no claim for contribution and indemnity could be sustained. Justice Boswell agreed with Bellwoods and struck the Third Party Claim as untenable. While he accepted that the Plaintiff’s injuries may be indivisible (i.e. it would be difficult to parse out which Defendants in both actions caused the Plaintiff’s current psychological injuries), the difficulty in separating out the consequences of individual actions could not support the legal viability of a Third Party Claim. As such, the Third Party Claim for contribution and indemnity against Bellwoods was struck.