State Immunity Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. S-18)

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Act current to 2019-06-20 and last amended on 2012-03-13. Previous Versions

State Immunity (continued)

Marginal note:Maritime law

  •  (1) A foreign state is not immune from the jurisdiction of a court in any proceedings that relate to

    • (a) an action in rem against a ship owned or operated by the state, or

    • (b) an action in personam for enforcing a claim in connection with a ship owned or operated by the state,

    if, at the time the claim arose or the proceedings were commenced, the ship was being used or was intended for use in a commercial activity.

  • Marginal note:Cargo

    (2) A foreign state is not immune from the jurisdiction of a court in any proceedings that relate to

    • (a) an action in rem against any cargo owned by the state if, at the time the claim arose or the proceedings were commenced, the cargo and the ship carrying the cargo were being used or were intended for use in a commercial activity; or

    • (b) an action in personam for enforcing a claim in connection with any cargo owned by the state if, at the time the claim arose or the proceedings were commenced, the ship carrying the cargo was being used or was intended for use in a commercial activity.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (3) For the purposes of subsections (1) and (2), a ship or cargo owned by a foreign state includes any ship or cargo in the possession or control of the state and any ship or cargo in which the state claims an interest.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 95, s. 7

Marginal note:Property in Canada

 A foreign state is not immune from the jurisdiction of a court in any proceedings that relate to an interest or, in the Province of Quebec, a right of the state in property that arises by way of succession, gift or bona vacantia.

  • R.S., 1985, c. S-18, s. 8
  • 2004, c. 25, s. 172

Procedure and Relief

Marginal note:Service on a foreign state

  •  (1) Service of an originating document on a foreign state, other than on an agency of the foreign state, may be made

    • (a) in any manner agreed on by the state;

    • (b) in accordance with any international Convention to which the state is a party; or

    • (c) in the manner provided in subsection (2).

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) For the purposes of paragraph (1)(c), anyone wishing to serve an originating document on a foreign state may deliver a copy of the document, in person or by registered mail, to the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs or a person designated by him for the purpose, who shall transmit it to the foreign state.

  • Marginal note:Service on an agency of a foreign state

    (3) Service of an originating document on an agency of a foreign state may be made

    • (a) in any manner agreed on by the agency;

    • (b) in accordance with any international Convention applicable to the agency; or

    • (c) in accordance with any applicable rules of court.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (4) Where service on an agency of a foreign state cannot be made under subsection (3), a court may, by order, direct how service is to be made.

  • Marginal note:Date of service

    (5) Where service of an originating document is made in the manner provided in subsection (2), service of the document shall be deemed to have been made on the day that the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs or a person designated by him pursuant to subsection (2) certifies to the relevant court that the copy of the document has been transmitted to the foreign state.

  • R.S., 1985, c. S-18, s. 9
  • 1995, c. 5, s. 27

Marginal note:Default judgment

  •  (1) Where, in any proceedings in a court, service of an originating document has been made on a foreign state in accordance with subsection 9(1), (3) or (4) and the state has failed to take, within the time limited therefor by the rules of the court or otherwise by law, the initial step required of a defendant or respondent in those proceedings in that court, no further step toward judgment may be taken in the proceedings except after the expiration of at least sixty days following the date of service of the originating document.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) Where judgment is signed against a foreign state in any proceedings in which the state has failed to take the initial step referred to in subsection (1), a certified copy of the judgment shall be served on the foreign state

    • (a) where service of the document that originated the proceedings was made on an agency of the foreign state, in such manner as is ordered by the court; or

    • (b) in any other case, in the manner specified in paragraph 9(1)(c) as though the judgment were an originating document.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (3) Where, by reason of subsection (2), a certified copy of a judgment is required to be served in the manner specified in paragraph 9(1)(c), subsections 9(2) and (5) apply with such modifications as the circumstances require.

  • Marginal note:Application to set aside or revoke default judgment

    (4) A foreign state may, within sixty days after service on it of a certified copy of a judgment under subsection (2), apply to have the judgment set aside or revoked.

  • R.S., 1985, c. S-18, s. 10
  • 2004, c. 25, s. 173

Marginal note:No injunction, specific performance, etc., without consent

  •  (1) Subject to subsection (3), no relief by way of an injunction, specific performance or the recovery of land or other property may be granted against a foreign state unless the state consents in writing to that relief and, where the state so consents, the relief granted shall not be greater than that consented to by the state.

  • Marginal note:Submission not consent

    (2) Submission by a foreign state to the jurisdiction of a court is not consent for the purposes of subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (3) This section does not apply either to an agency of a foreign state or to a foreign state that is set out on the list referred to in subsection 6.1(2) in respect of an action brought against that foreign state for its support of terrorism or its terrorist activity.

  • R.S., 1985, c. S-18, s. 11
  • 2012, c. 1, s. 6

Marginal note:Execution

  •  (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3), property of a foreign state that is located in Canada is immune from attachment and execution and, in the case of an action in rem, from arrest, detention, seizure and forfeiture except where

    • (a) the state has, either explicitly or by implication, waived its immunity from attachment, execution, arrest, detention, seizure or forfeiture, unless the foreign state has withdrawn the waiver of immunity in accordance with any term thereof that permits such withdrawal;

    • (b) the property is used or is intended to be used for a commercial activity or, if the foreign state is set out on the list referred to in subsection 6.1(2), is used or is intended to be used by it to support terrorism or engage in terrorist activity;

    • (c) the execution relates to a judgment establishing rights in property that has been acquired by succession or gift or in immovable property located in Canada, or

    • (d) the foreign state is set out on the list referred to in subsection 6.1(2) and the attachment or execution relates to a judgment rendered in an action brought against it for its support of terrorism or its terrorist activity and to property other than property that has cultural or historical value.

  • Marginal note:Property of an agency of a foreign state is not immune

    (2) Subject to subsection (3), property of an agency of a foreign state is not immune from attachment and execution and, in the case of an action in rem, from arrest, detention, seizure and forfeiture, for the purpose of satisfying a judgment of a court in any proceedings in respect of which the agency is not immune from the jurisdiction of the court by reason of any provision of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Military property

    (3) Property of a foreign state

    • (a) that is used or is intended to be used in connection with a military activity, and

    • (b) that is military in nature or is under the control of a military authority or defence agency

    is immune from attachment and execution and, in the case of an action in rem, from arrest, detention, seizure and forfeiture.

  • Marginal note:Property of a foreign central bank immune

    (4) Subject to subsection (5), property of a foreign central bank or monetary authority that is held for its own account and is not used or intended for a commercial activity is immune from attachment and execution.

  • Marginal note:Waiver of immunity

    (5) The immunity conferred on property of a foreign central bank or monetary authority by subsection (4) does not apply where the bank, authority or its parent foreign government has explicitly waived the immunity, unless the bank, authority or government has withdrawn the waiver of immunity in accordance with any term thereof that permits such withdrawal.

  • R.S., 1985, c. S-18, s. 12
  • 2012, c. 1, s. 7
 
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