D.C.T.B. Enterprises v. Original Fishboat Trader

In Fish Cases, Torts on (Updated )

This case involved a series of transactions in 2001 and 2002 where a fishing licence broker acted as agent with respect to the sale of halibut quota for a number of vendors. After the fact, the vendors claimed that the broker was negligent in allowing the 10 per cent Pacific Halibut Management Association ("PHMA") quota associated with their licences to also be transferred to the purchasers.

In dismissing the case against the broker, the court ruled as follows:

My impression is at that the parties approached . . . [the] broker because of her ability to match purchasers with sellers. While she did draft the listing agreements and purchase and sale agreements, I see nothing to suggest that the vendors were relying on any particular professional expertise that they thought she possessed.

I would add that the confusion under which the vendors laboured was primarily a result of confusing information provided to them by the PHMA in its newsletters. [She] did not receive those newsletters and had no way of knowing what information or misinformation they contained.