Yes Martial Arts Schools, You Need to Buy a Business Licence too

Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, finding that a fee charging martial arts school is no different than any other business and is required to purchase a business licence.

In today’s case (City of Burnaby v. Gildemeester dba Master Gee’s Black Belt Academy) the Respondent failed to pay its renewal fee from 2010-2014.  When the City asked for these payments to be made the Respondent replied arguing he was not required to purchase a business licence.  The Respondent argued that “he is exercising private rights with other private persons and is not “operating” in the public.  He asserts that a private person need not obtain a business licence to do private activities.“.

The BC Supreme Court disagreed and granted a permanent and mandatory injunction preventing the business from operating in the City of Burnaby unless it obtained a valid licence.

Not quite an earth shattering development, just a quick judicial reminder that there is nothing special about for profit martial arts academies exempting them from the requirements other businesses must comply with

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