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Analysis of Doder v. Radojkovic

This was a lawsuit in Canada that resulted from the Bishop Giorgije of Canada removing the elected board of directors of a newly incorporated church corporation. The Church executives decided that it was a prudent decision to set up a corporation to hold the newly acquired property and future sight of the St Sava Church on Dixie Road in Mississauga, Ontario Canada.  The Corporation was incorporated under the Corporations Act of Ontario.  As such it is subject to the Corporations Act. Before the corporation could even establish its by-laws, Bishop Giorgije had a disagreement with the elected Directors of the Corporation.  He removed them and appointed Interim Council of Trustees. The lawsuit ensued with the former Director, Mr Radojkovic as defendant and Father Dodor as the plaintiff. The case spells out in great detail the facts.  In the end The Interim Council of Trustees was ruled invalid and a court ordered election was ordered.  The plaintiff was ordered to pay the defendant’s costs.
The corporation now is charged with carrying on the business of the Church. The corporation must act in accordance with the law of Ontario and, in particular, with the provisions of the Corporations Act.

The Interim Board was actually appointed by the Diocesan Council not by the Bishop but, in my opinion, the Diocesan Council had no power to purport to dismiss the properly elected directors and appoint its own choice of directors as the Board of Directors of the corporation Section 287 (1) of the Corporations Act provides that the directors shall be elected by the members in a general meeting and the election shall be by ballot or in such other manner as the by-laws of the corporation prescribe.

Section 287 (4) provides that if an election of directors is not held at the proper time, the directors continue in office until their successors are elected.

An issue was the corporate by-laws had to be written. The court ruled on the subject as follows:

It is hoped that the new Board of Directors will take on the task of drafting an organizational by-law which will incorporate as much of the Church Constitution of the U.S.A. and Canada as is appropriate and is not in conflict with federal or provincial law. The by-law could then be presented to a special assembly of the Church members for approval.

Based on this bolded comment above, it implies that the federal and provincial laws MUST be adhered to.

To read the whole case of Doder v. Radojkovic
look at the following links:

To read the Doder v. Radojkovic Supreme Court Judgement
in PDF format CLICK HERE

To read the Lawyers Weekly Article
in PDF format CLICK HERE

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