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Archive for ‘Substantive Law’

Northwest Territories Tables Cannabis Legislation

On February 28, 2018, the government of the Northwest Territories tabled Bill 6, the Cannabis Legalization and Regulation Implementation Act. A complete copy of the legislation can be found here.

Under the draft legislation it is proposed that:

  • The Liquor Commission will be responsible for distribution and sale of cannabis in the NTW;
  • Cannabis will be sold in “cannabis stores”, which will initially be the existing liquor stores with the possibility of “cannabis-only” stores in the future;
  • Mail order purchase and delivery will be available;
  • Communities will be able to hold a plebiscite on whether to restrict or ban
. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Challenges of Enforcing Statutory Publication Bans Online

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in on this again in R. v. Canadian Broadcasting Corp. on an application for a mandatory injunction. Although much of the commentary on this case has focused on how the Court has modified the historic test used for injunctions, few have looked at other aspects of the ruling, including the enforceability of statutory publication bans online.

An injunction is a powerful tool wielded by the courts, but one that should be applied sparingly. A court will order or compel a party to do something, or refrain from doing something, but will . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Law Student-Led Legal Research Day Supports Environmental Law Reform

Students of the UVic Environmental Law Club contribute the following guest post. They discuss their initiative to conduct an all-day legal research event, putting their learning of the legislative research process toward a public interest effort. The event was inspired by a national student-driven research event on another issue a year ago. We thank Slaw’s Kim Nayyer for coordinating this submission.

Friday February 2, 2018, the UVic Environmental Law Club coordinated a full day research-o-thon involving more than 50 law students from UVic. The event: “Mining Law in BC – Digging up a Dirty History” focused on the history of . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Legislation

Consistency in Case-by-Case Privilege for Religious Communications

Solicitor-client privilege has been described by the Court in Lavallee, Rackel & Heintz v. Canada as a principle of fundamental justice and civil right of supreme importance in Canadian law. The Court went further in R. v. McClure and stated at para 35, “solicitor-client privilege must be as close to absolute as possible to ensure public confidence and retain relevance.”

Not all forms of privilege though are so strongly protected. For forms of privilege that is not historically protected on the basis of class or category, the courts have employed the test originally set out in the 1961 tet by . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

British Columbia Releases Details on Recreational Cannabis Rules

After much anticipation, the Government of British Columbia has released details on recreational cannabis rules that will govern how cannabis can be purchased and consumed within the province.

Retail Framework

British Columbians aged 19 and older will be able to purchase recreational cannabis through privately run retail stores or government operated retail stores and government online sales. The province’s Liquor Distribution Branch will operate a new standalone network of public retail stores while the Liquor Control and Licensing Branch will be responsible for licensing and monitoring private retail stores.

Licensed retailers will not be able to sell cannabis in the . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Challenges Around the Right to Be Forgotten in Canada

This past Friday, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada released a draft position on online reputation which includes a call for several measures that help protect Canadians, including the right to ask search engines to de-index web pages and removing information at the source.

In the accompanying press release, Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien stated,

There is little more precious than our reputation. But protecting reputation is increasingly difficult in the digital age, where so much about us is systematically indexed, accessed and shared with just a few keystrokes. Online information about us can easily be distorted or

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law, Technology

Can Discovery Evidence Be Used in a Criminal Case?

Often civil cases and criminal cases arise out of the same event. This creates an issue when the defendant of a criminal case is also a defendant in the civil case. Can the defendant then use the discovery evidence from the civil case in his criminal trial? Must the defendant bring a correlative “Wagg” motion to obtain the discovery evidence?

In Ontario, Rule 30.1 sets out the limits for using discovery evidence in one proceeding in another proceeding. Generally, a defendant cannot take discovery evidence from one case and use it another case. However, an exception is carved out to . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

Student Access to the Exams They Have Written

The Court of Justice of the EU has held that the “examination script” i.e. the answers to examination questions, constitutes the personal information of the student, and therefore it must be made available to the student on request under access to information and privacy laws. (This is the Nowak case out of Ireland, for those of you who follow such things.)

Would the same result be obtained in any Canadian jurisdiction? One understands the argument that the answers are connected to the student – they have to be, in order to serve their primary purpose. The student’s marks would be . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, ulc_ecomm_list

An Algorithm’s Charter Rights

Everywhere I go during the holidays I seem to be surrounded by Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Google’s Assistant. While these computers don’t yet talk the way do, it did have me thinking about the expression rights that might be protected by the Charter.

In 1996, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California ruled in Daniel J. Bernstein et al., v. United States Department of State et al. that software source could be protected under the American First Amendment,

…the particular language one chooses change the nature of language for First Amendment purposes. This court can

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology

Welcome to 2018 With New Employment and Labour Law Rules and Obligations Across Canada

Welcome to 2018 and a load of new employment and labour law rules and obligations across Canada.

As most of you already know, a number of new or amended laws and regulations came into effect on January 1 or will come into force later in 2018 across Canada, including marijuana legalization and higher minimum wages in Ontario, Alberta and other jurisdictions. Here is a brief reminder of the new or amended rules you need to be aware of and implement to ensure compliance. . . . [more]

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

The Healthy Respect Between Judiciary and Executive

As we enter 2018, we begin the new year with a new Chief Justice, and an opportunity to reflect on the Rt. Hon. Beverley McLachlin’s 17 years in this role, the longest in the entire history of Canada.

A well-experienced jurist, who has been on the bench since 1981, her role on the Court has had a discernible impact on the development of the Charter and its interpretation. The Charter is one of the most important national symbols of Canada, outranking even the flag, the national anthem, the RCMP, and even more than hockey. The CBA Presidents who . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Sears Shortcomings Highlight Regulatory Deficiencies

The Canadian Press conducted a survey recently of journalists, nearly 47% of whom voted the closure and controversies of Sears Canada as the 2017 Business News Story of the Year.

The public interest in the story was fuelled in no small part by its iconic status, but also the $270-million pension deficit that is unlikely to be fully serviced in light of other outstanding debts. As Michael Powell, incoming president of the Canadian Federation of Pensioners points out, it really shouldn’t be so significant,

Sears should not be the Canadian Press 2017 Business News Story of the Year

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law