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Federal Court of Appeal: Successfully blocked stay motion of major Incumbent telecom provider

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Conway successfully represented TekSavvy Solutions Inc. at the Federal Court of Appeal (FCA) in defeating Bell Canada’s stay motion to suspend a decision of the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). TekSavvy is Canada’s largest independent internet service provider and has consistently championed lower internet prices for Canadians.

The CRTC decision at issue ordered certain major telecom giants to provide smaller competitors temporary access to their fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) facilities, which deliver access to high-speed internet. This decision will make it easier for competitors like TekSavvy to enter the growing FTTP market and to offer packages of fibre internet services to customers in Ontario and Quebec. Bell sought a stay of this decision, which if granted, would have meant that Bell would not be required to provide its competitors with temporary access to its FTTP facilities until the FCA decided Bell’s appeal – likely months or possibly years away.

The FCA concluded that a stay was not necessary in the circumstances. Applying the three-step RJR-MacDonald test, Justice Gleason found that Bell could not establish that it would suffer irreparable harm if the stay was not granted, and therefore failed on the second step of the test. The FCA endorsed TekSavvy’s submissions and evidence in its reasoning, finding that Bell’s claims of harm lacked “the necessary degree of convincing particularity” and in part, relied improperly on hypotheticals and speculation.

You can read the decision (2024 FCA 28) in full here. Conway lawyers Colin Baxter, Julie Mouris, Siobhan Morris and Logan Stack are pleased to have achieved a positive result for this client.

Conway regularly represents parties at the appellate level to defend or oppose outcomes arising from administrative tribunal decisions. Visit our website for more information about our Public, Administrative & Regulatory Law and Appellate Advocacy services.