Official Languages Act

Table of Contents

Section 13

Cases

Farn v. The Queen, 95 DTC 5426 (FCTD)

Pinard J. found that the intent of the legislator in the pre-1995 version of s. 79(c) was placed beyond doubt by the "remarkable clarity of the French language version" (p. 5433).

The Queen in Right of Canada v. Government of Manitoba, 85 DTC 5588, [1986] 1 CTC 16 (FCTD)

Joyal, J. stated: "Although a good argument may be made that the French text [of s. 44(2)(c) of the Excise Tax Act] has a disjunctive character, I am of the opinion it should not be followed. The comma appears to me to be merely a desire in the French text to be faithful to the English text, a text which, as is obvious, is not representative of clear and lucid draftsmanship."

Nitrochem Inc. v. Dep. Min. of Nat. Rev. for Customs and Excise, [1984] CTC 608 (FCA)

A device for spreading inorganic fertilizers on lawns was held to be a "manure spreader" (a term which arguably referred only to a spreader of animal wastes) in light of the phrase "distributeurs d'engrais", appearing in the French text, which included inorganic fertilizers. MacGuigan J. stated: "With respect to the reconciliation of English and French texts, a judge's responsibility is not to seek some primary instance of ordinary usage in one language to which the meaning in the other language must be made to conform, but rather to try to grasp the whole meaning in both languages".

Les Magasins Continental Ltée v. The Queen, [1982] 2 F.C. 351, 81 DTC 5175, [1981] CTC 428 (C.A.)

The French version of regulation 900(1) was interpreted in light of the English version.

The Queen v. Cie Imm. BCN Ltée, 79 DTC 5068, [1979] CTC 71, [1979] 1 S.C.R. 865

S.8 of the Official Languages Act did not overrule the basic rule of statutory construction that every clause of a statute should be construed in light of its statutory context. The meaning of the expression "disposed of" as found in Regulation 1100(2) was construed in light of all the capital cost allowance provisions of the Act and Regulations, and was not controlled by the narrow meaning of "alienes".

Various provisions were identified where the French text was "inapt", when compared with the English text.

Locations of other summaries Wordcount
Tax Topics - Income Tax Act - Section 13 - Subsection 13(21) - Disposition of Property disposition by virtue of merger of leasehold interest and freehold 90
Tax Topics - Statutory Interpretation - Interpretation/Definition Provisions detailed definition not presumed exhaustive 46

The Queen v. McLaughlin, 78 DTC 6406, [1978] CTC 602 (FCTD)

Although the word "recompense" in the French version of s. 56(1)(n) was more comprehensive than the word "prize" in the English version, it was found that "the English version is much more in keeping with the apparent scheme and philosophy of the section," and moreover, in light of the strict construction rule, "if it can be said that a difference exists between the two versions, the narrower one must prevail."

Vauban Productions v. The Queen, 75 DTC 5371, [1975] CTC 511 (FCTD), aff'd 79 DTC 5371, [1979] CTC 262 (FCA)

It was determined that there was a typographical error in the English version of the Canada-France Income Tax Convention (1951) in light of the French version.

Juster v. The Queen, 74 DTC 6540, [1974] CTC 681 (FCA)

Despite the apparent narrowness of the French version of the phrase "maintaining of horses for racing", a broad construction was given to that phrase.