Imperial Oil Resources Ltd v Exxonmobil Upstream, 2015 FC 1218
The Federal Court has finally stated outright that it has the jurisdiction to vary patent ownership without encroaching upon the realm of provincial contract law.
It may seem a trivial point, as mirrored by the straightforward facts of the case. However, the question of whether or not the Federal Court has jurisdiction to handle the ownership of patents as property, when property law is reserved for provincial courts while patent law is reserved for the Federal Court, has been in tension for some time.
The Federal Court has held in the past that it does not have jurisdiction to determine ownership of patents that would require the application and interpretation of provincial contract law.  In this case, however, the ownership of the patent was not at issue. The two parties, Imperial Oil and Exxonmobil, both agreed that ownership of the patent should be transferred solely to Imperial. 
The parties wanted to transfer ownership of the patent because of an inventorship issue. The parties agreed that, although there were 11 inventors listed on the patent at issue, 8 of those 11 inventors should be removed so that the patent at issue can claim priority to a previous patent application that listed only 3 of the 11 inventors.  Those 3 inventors assigned their interest in the patent to Imperial Oil alone. Therefore, the parties agreed, ownership should be transferred solely to Imperial Oil.
As such, the Federal Court was able to vary the ownership of the patent as a consequence of correcting the inventorship of the patent.  All without breaking the constitution.