Ejusdem Generis

Table of Contents

Cases

Canada (National Revenue) v. Cameco Corporation, 2019 FCA 67

3rd word in phrase was limited by focus on other 2 words

The Crown submitted that the word “audit” in the power under in s. 231.1(1)(a) to “inspect, audit or examine” encompassed the authority to ask questions of employees of a taxpayer, including the employees of its overseas subsidiaries, and to require that they be answered orally. In rejecting this submission, Rennie JA stated (at para. 18):

Neither “inspect” nor “examine” suggests a power to compel a person to answer questions. To the contrary, their ordinary meaning is one of self-directed inquiry, in this case in respect of “the book and records” of the taxpayer. When two or more words that are capable of analogous meaning are coupled together they take their colour from each other, the more general being restricted to a sense analogous to the less general … .

Locations of other summaries Wordcount
Tax Topics - Income Tax Act - Section 231.1 - Subsection 231.1(1) - Paragraph 231.1(1)(a) Minister cannot under s. 231.1(1) compel oral answers to its questions other than for aid in auditing taxpayer books and records 315
Tax Topics - Statutory Interpretation - Redundancy/reading in words CRA’s broad interpretation of s. 231.1(1)(a) would render s. 231.1(1)(d) redundant 152
Tax Topics - Statutory Interpretation - Interpretation Act - Subsection 45(2) interpretation informed by legislative amendment narrowing the wording 54

Immunovaccine Technologies Inc. v. Canada, 2014 DTC 5119 [at 7309], 2014 FCA 196, aff'g 2013 DTC 1101 [at 531], 2013 TCC 103

definition ending in "any other form of assistance" precluded a narrow reading

The taxpayer unsuccessfully argued that the definition of "government assistance" in s. 127(9) did not cover amounts that the recipient was obligated to repay, even if those amounts were advanced on non-commercial terms. Boivin JA found that the ejusdem generis principle could not narrow the scope of the definition of "government assistance," because the enumerated forms of assistance were followed by the words "or any other form of assistance..." (para. 15). See full summary under s. 127(9).

Locations of other summaries Wordcount
Tax Topics - Income Tax Act - Section 12 - Subsection 12(1) - Paragraph 12(1)(x) government loans made in a non-commercial capacity are "government assistance" 93
Tax Topics - Income Tax Act - Section 127 - Subsection 127(9) - Government Assistance "government assistance" generally encompasses amounts advanced on non-commercial terms 243

Walker v. Ritchie, 2006 SCC 45, [2006] 2 S.C.R. 428

enumerated items guide as to scope of basket clause

The successful party, Mr. Ritchie, asked to have included, in his award of costs, a premium of $192,600 given that his counsel had carried the litigation for four years without remuneration. In the course of finding that this premium did not fall within the ambit of Rule 57.01(1)(i) of the Ontario Rules of Civil Procedure (similar to Rule 147(3)(j) of the Tax Court Rules), namely “any other matter relevant to the question of costs”, since it did not have anything in common with the other factors relating to costs enumerated in Rule 57.01(1) (a) to (h), Rothstein J stated that these other factors provided guidance as to the type of matters that might be considered relevant in Rule 57.01(i), and further stated (at para. 25):

Indeed, the Latin maxim ejusdem generis, or the limited class rule, is helpful in determining legislative intent when a court is faced with a list of items followed by a general term. As R. Sullivan explains in Sullivan and Driedger on the Construction of Statutes (4th ed. 2002), at pp. 175-77, the scope of the general term may be limited to any genus or class to which the specific items all belong. An examination of the factors that were expressly included at the time the costs award was fixed in this case reveals some common features among them.

Words and Phrases
ejusdem generis

Halpenny Estate v. Paddon, [1982] 1 S.C.R. 559

The words "accident", "inadvertence" and "impossibility" were found not to constitute a class for the purpose of applying the ejusdem generis rule to the concluding phrase "or other sufficient cause."