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Archive for ‘Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions’

Better Options for Interprovincial Motions to Change Support

When families split apart, they don’t always stick around in the same province. Sometimes that gives rise to challenge circumstances for resolving proceedings or updating support orders.

Justice Pazaratz examined a interprovincial motion to change support in Chree v. Chree. The judge, who is now known for his writing style, started with the following:


  1. There’s an old saying: “Two Heads Are Better Than One”.
  1. But not when it comes to trial judges.

  1. Two judges. Each hearing different parts of the case. On different dates, many months apart. Having to make decisions on the same case.
  1. It
. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology

Amendments to Saskatchewan Essential Service Law

The Saskatchewan government has tabled amendments to Part VII of the province’s Employment Act in light of the Supreme Court of Canada’s January 30, 2015 decision, which struck down as unconstitutional an essential services law that prevents some public sector employees from striking. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

“Outrageous” Employer Conduct Wins Employee $100,000 in Punitive Damages

In a recent decision, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice harshly rejected an employer’s allegation that it had just cause to dismiss an employee. In allowing the employee’s claim for damages for wrongful dismissal, the Court awarded the employee $100,000 in punitive damages in response to the employer’s “terrible conduct.”

The Court found that the employer’s true basis for terminating the individual’s employment was to avoid financial obligations arising out of a share purchase agreement between the employee’s and the employer’s companies. As such, the Court’s view was that the employer had “conjured up a cause” to terminate the . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

The Bachelor: Defendant Edition

Some of us recall those days of law school with nostalgia, if for nothing else the colourful stories which set precedent on key issues of law. “They lied to us,” we think as we look at the files we work on which pale in comparison.

Sometimes we’re lucky enough to encounter this colour in practice today. The colour in this case is pink, in the form of tights attached to a soon-to-be groom who was also wearing a feather boa and a lace shirt. He was even dragging an actual metal ball and chain weighing 32 pounds, affixed to his . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

More Onerous Duty to Accommodate Workplace Injuries

A recent Quebec Court of Appeal decision will make it more onerous for employers to meet their duty to accommodate in the context of a workplace injury. The Court of Appeal found that an employer must seek suitable employment for an employee returning to work from an injury, offer reasonable accommodation to the employee to the point of undue hardship, and conduct an assessment to ensure the accommodation complies with the provisions of the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

US Supreme Court Justices Prefer Shakespeare

According to a recent article about the favourite literary references used by current US Supreme Court justices in their judgments, Shakespeare and Lewis Carroll top the list.

This was followed by:

  • George Orwell
  • Charles Dickens
  • Aldous Huxley
  • Aesop
  • Fyodor Dostoyevsky, William Faulkner, Herman Melville and J.D. Salinger (equal number of references)

This reminds me of one of my posts on (way back in 2006!) on Popular Song Lyrics in Legal Writing. Oklahoma City University School of Law professor Alex B. Long did a study of citations to pop music stars in law journals.

In descending list of “popularity” . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Government of Canada v. Face Coverings: A Debate on the Limits to Freedom of Religion

On September 16, 2015, the federal government decided to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada the case of Canada (Citizenship and Immigration) v. Ishaq, 2015 FCA 194 (CanLII), in which the Federal Court of Appeal ruled that it was unlawful for the Canadian government to ban new citizens from reciting the citizenship oath with a face covering.
Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

‘La Bâtonnière’ No More After Settlement With Quebec Bar Association

The Quebec Bar Association and bencher-elect Lu Chan Khuong have released a joint statement, indicating that Khuong has decided to resign her position and duties. The joint press release, dated Tuesday, September 15, 2015, announces a settlement agreement of the legal action opposing the board of directors of the Bar Association and Khuong. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Ontario Court Takes Jurisdiction in Internet Defamation Case – Ho Hum?

The Superior Court of Ontario has recently held that an Israeli newspaper should face a defamation action in Ontario on behalf of an Ontario resident, since the newpaper’s website was read in Ontario. Goldhar v

The Court made short work of the ‘jurisdiction simpliciter’ argument, based on SCC decisions, and not much longer work, it would appear, of the forum conveniens arguments. It did order that the costs to bring the Israeli witnesses to Canada should be paid by the plaintiff.

Are these cases now routine? Is there any realistic chance for a defendant to avoid a trial . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

Update on the Case of the Quebec Bar Association Suspended Bencher

This is an update regarding the Quebec Bar Association’s controversial suspension of its recently elected bencher, Me Lu Chan Khuong (see our past blog posts here and here). To summarize, the bar association’s board of directors suspended Khuong after it went public that in 2014 she had been arrested on suspicion of shoplifting two pairs of jeans at a Simons store in Laval. Khuong sued the bar for $95,000 in damages and filed a safeguard order to be reinstated to her position as president of the bar.

Additional allegations surface

Now, the bar has countered with its own lawsuit . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Balancing Act – Freedom of Association vs. Freedom of Religion

The various rights and freedoms protected under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms are sometimes at odds. Where does my religious right end yours begin? When two protected rights are at odds, who wins? According to recent news reports, a dispute of this nature has recently arisen in northern Ontario between a furniture company and its employees, after the employees attempted to organize.

Following a union certification vote, 69% of the employees at the company voted in favour of unionization. In response, the owner of the company closed shop. The business-owner cited his religion as justification for shutting . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

The Broad Arm of Environmental Responsibility

The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Chevron Corp. v. Yaiguaje concluded that a real and substantial connection to the Canadian court is not necessary to enforce a foreign judgement. This decision may be significant in signalling that Canadian courts will more willingly enforce the judgments of foreign courts.

The respondent plaintiffs in this case characterized the facts as follows:

This case is not about preventing potential damage. It is about paying for the remediation of massive environmental contamination.

The contamination in question involved the oil-rich Lago Agrio region of Ecuador. The plaintiffs, representing 30,000 indigenous Eduadorian villagers, filed suit in . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions