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Archive for ‘Substantive Law: Legislation’

Welcome to 2020: A Federal and Ontario Employment and Labour Law Summary

We are almost at the end of the second month of 2020 and have compiled for you a number of upcoming employment and labour law changes and key compliance issues that federally regulated and Ontario employers need to consider in their HR and payroll practices. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

The Expanding Meaning of “Other Cause”: Support Entitlement Beyond the Age of Majority

I continue to be amazed by the speed with which judicial interpretation of family law statutes evolves, and how that evolution undermines what little certainty those statutes provide to separating parents. As family law lawyers will recall, section 2(1) of the Divorce Act provides that:

“Child of the marriage” means a child of two spouses or former spouses who, at the material time … is the age of majority or over and under their charge but unable, by reason of illness, disability or other cause, to withdraw from their charge or to obtain the necessities of life.

Once upon a . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

Alberta Fair Registration Practices of Regulatory Bodies Proclaimed in Force

The Alberta Fair Registration Practices Act is proclaimed in force on March 1, 2020, to speed up the process of newcomers getting their credentials recognized so they can work in the careers they trained for, and remove unfair barriers. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Justice Issues, Legal Information, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Unofficial Consolidated Divorce Act Available

There is, as yet, no official consolidation of the current Divorce Act and Bill C-78 as passed by Parliament, and I understand that one isn’t likely to be coming soon. This isn’t a problem for many, but it is a problem for me and for anyone else who produces public and professional legal education materials.

Since the changes are coming into effect on 1 July 2020, just five short months from the date of writing, I’m taking the opportunity the amendments suggest and rewriting the Clicklaw wikibook JP Boyd on Family Law from stem to stern, and, well, a consolidation . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation

R. v. Chouhan: The Reasonable Person Test and Application of the Amendments

After a jury found Gerald Stanley not guilty of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Colten Boushie, the federal government amended the Criminal Code to eliminate peremptory challenges in the selection of juries, as well as a change in the trier of challenges for cause. Judges took different views about whether this change was prospective or retrospective. As the Ontario Court of Appeal has now ruled on this matter in Chouhan, many cases, decided on the wrong side of the issue, are likely to be appealed. Indeed at least one, an individual convicted for sexual assault, already . . . [more]

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

Federal Accessible Transportation Regulation

The federal Accessible Transportation for Persons with Disabilities Regulations (ATPDR) was registered under the federal Accessible Canada Act (ACA) on June 25, 2019. Most provisions of the ATPDR will come into force on June 25, 2020, while other more complex requirements (i.e., self-serve kiosks) will be phased in over three years (June 25, 2020, June 25, 2021 and June 25, 2022). This is the only accessibility standard currently registered under the ACA. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

The Federal Duty of Workplace Inspection: Reasonableness and Workplace Control

By Lewis Waring, Paralegal and Student-at-Law, Editor, First Reference Inc.

In Canada Post Corp v Canadian Union of Postal Workers, 2019 SCC 67 (“Canada Post”), the Supreme Court of Canada (“Court”) limited federally regulated employers’ duty to conduct safety inspections. Namely, the Court found that such employers only had a duty to inspect in workplaces over which they exercise control. Canada Post was an application of judicial review of a decision by the Occupational Health and Safety Tribunal of Canada (“OHSTC”). The rule-at-issue was Canada Labour Code, RSC 1985, c L-2, Part II, s 125(1)(z. 12) (“CLC”), which . . . [more]

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

Imposing Fiduciary Duties and Jurisdictional Gaps in Collective Agreement

By Lewis Waring, Licensed Paralegal and Student-at-Law, Editor, First Reference Inc.

In Greig v Desjardins Financial Security Life Assurance Company, the Superior Court of British Columbia (SCBC) considered a defendant’s handling of a plaintiff’s claim for LTD benefits. SCBC held that the Defendant’s handling of the Plaintiff’s claim for long-term disability (LTD) benefits was bad enough to violate its fiduciary duty and awarded the Plaintiff $50,000 in aggravated damages and $200,000 in punitive damages, accordingly. . . . [more]

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

Assessing the CJC’s Interpretation of Sections 54 and 55 of the Judges Act: The Patrick Smith Case

In its report of November 5, 2018, a review panel of the Canadian Judicial Council (CJC) found Justice Patrick Smith, a supernumerary judge of the Ontario Superior Court, had acted breached the Judges Act and the CJC’s Ethical Principles for Judges (these are currently under review) by taking a position that was susceptible to controversy, that of unpaid interim dean (academic) at the Boris Laskin Faculty of Law. The Review Panel concluded, however, that his conduct did not warrant removal from the bench. In November 2018, I posted a comment on my blog, Idlemusings, about “the Patrick Smith case”, . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Legislation

Saving Clauses Do Not Permit Employers to Contract Out of the ESA

Written by Lewis Waring, Paralegal, Editor, First Reference Inc.

In Groves v UTS Consultants Inc, 2019 ONSC 5605 (“Groves”), the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (“SCJ”) held that an employer cannot contract out of its obligations under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”) by including a “saving clause” in its employment contract. Moreover, a contract that attempts to make an employer exempt from its obligations under the ESA is unenforceable, and, in Groves, the SCJ merely applied this uncontroversial principle to what is known as a saving clause. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation

A Look at Alberta’s Private Member’s Bill on Conscience Rights for Doctors

Commentators on private member’s Bill 207, Conscience Rights (Health Care Providers) Protection Act, introduced in the Alberta Legislative Assembly on November 7, 2019, have disagreed about whether it is different from the current system in Alberta.

Here I consider the extent to which it would be different from the current requirements of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA). I also consider how it would give doctors (and other health professionals) the greatest freedom in Canada to refuse to treat patients on religious and conscientious grounds and fail to put the interests of patients first, as . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation