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Archive for ‘Substantive Law’

Systemic Racism as a Basis for Excluding Evidence

Introduction

The existence of racism in our legal system is no surprise.

David Tanovich has written extensively how the Charter has still largely been ineffective in addressing racism in the criminal justice system. Faisal Mirza has explained how mandatory minimum sentences disproportionate affect black Canadians, and he wrote this in 2001, before the additional sentences added in 2009.

We can go even further back to 1993, and the Commission on Systemic Racism in the Ontario Criminal Justice System, which described a widespread and prevalent prejudice against blacks as follows:

First what we are dealing with at root, and

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

Despite Settlement Breach, an Award of Compensation Not Warranted

Written by Cristina Lavecchia, paralegal, editor at First Reference

An Applicant recently went before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (Tribunal), alleging that the Respondent failed to pay settlement monies owed to him per the schedule agreed to in Minutes of Settlement. The Applicant sought full payment of the general damages amount agreed to in the settlement and a further $1,000 for the harm caused by the breach. Although the Tribunal found there to be a contravention of settlement, it deemed that the delay in receiving the monies was relatively minor, and therefore an award of compensation was not warranted. . . . [more]

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

Courthouse Libraries BC Hosting Webinar for Canadian Lawyers on the Impact of Recent Executive Orders


I feel I must write this quick, as every day the terrain shifts and the battle lines move in the escalating conflict between the 45th POTUS and virtually the entire machinery of justice.

FYI, the ABA yesterday released its resolution 10C calling on Trump to withdraw his order restricting travel from seven Muslim-majority countries.

Less than two weeks ago Trump started the whole mess when he slapped on brass knuckles to deliver not one, not two, but three immigration-related executive orders to finish his first week as President.

The world sucked wind.

Even north of the 49th people . . . [more]

Posted in: Announcements, Education & Training: CLE/PD, Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Comments Pro, Con and Neutral on Trump’s US Supreme Court Nominee

SCOTUSblog, the well-known American blog devoted to analysis of the United States Supreme Court, has been providing great coverage of US President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch (U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit) to fill the vacancy left on the top court of our Southern neighbour by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016.

Here are some links. Each of the SCOTUSblog posts below contains extensive links to news, commentary and analysis:

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

United States Asking Foreign Visitors for Social Media Info and Cell Phone Contacts

I heard about the United States Custom Border Agency had been asking Canadians for access to their Facebook accounts and cellphones when they arrived at the border to join the women’s march on Washington the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration. When some Canadians refuse to surrender their information, they were denied entry into the US and turned away (this is in addition to those who were refused entry because they were going to the march). I was appalled to hear this, and appalled at the invasion of privacy and violation of civil and human rights – and in 2017! I . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Miscellaneous, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet

Trump’s Executive Order & the Firing of Yates

Below is the full text of the White House statement

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law

Trump’s Executive Order on Foreigners Strips Privacy Protection for Canadians

Included in Trump’s reprehensible executive order “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States” was this:

Sec. 14. Privacy Act. Agencies shall, to the extent consistent with applicable law, ensure that their privacy policies exclude persons who are not United States citizens or lawful permanent residents from the protections of the Privacy Act regarding personally identifiable information.

The Privacy Act covers personal information held by US Federal agencies. This would apply, for example, to information collected about Canadians entering the United States.

This should be attracting the wrath of the Canadian privacy commissioner and the Canadian . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

The Just and Equitable Exception to Piercing Corporate Veil

After the Supreme Court of Canada’s 2015 decision in Chevron Corp. v. Yaiguaje, where the Court affirmed the ability of our legal system to hear foreign enforcement actions, the matter has returned to the Ontario Superior Court. The original stay by Justice Brown in 2013 was set aside by the Court, but the issue of the corporate separateness what not addressed until now.

A series of summary judgments, heard together, and a separate decision to amend the statement of claim further to add Chevron Canada Capital Company (“CCCC”), were recently released, shedding light on whether the corporate veil . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Supreme Court of Canada Tackles Link Rot With New Online Archive

To combat link rot, the Supreme Court of Canada today launched an online archive of Internet Sources Cited in SCC Judgments (1998 – 2016).

Link rot refers to broken URLs or to URLs that direct to the original site but whose corresponding document has been removed or relocated without any information about where to find it.

From the Terms of Use:

“The Office of the Registrar of the SCC, recognizing that web pages or websites that the Court cites in its judgments may subsequently vary in content or be discontinued, has located and archived the content of most

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology: Internet

Why Is Domestic Violence More Often Becoming a Workplace Responsibility?

It is understood that domestic violence has been known to effect employees at work in a number of ways; a recent study shows that the problem is widespread. “Can Work Be Safe, When Home Isn’t,” (PDF) by researchers at Western University and the Canadian Labour Congress, outlines the preliminary results of a Canada-wide survey of more than 8,000 workers on how domestic violence effects workplaces. The results are startling in many ways, but unsurprising in others.

For instance: . . . [more]

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

Canadian Senate to Discuss Cannabis Legalization on January 31

Although legislation to legalize Cannabis is not set to be tabled until the spring, it seems as though the Canadian Senate wants to get the discussion going early.

In the Order and Notice Paper which sets out the agenda for the January 31, 2017, Senate meeting, the Honourable Senator Carignan, P.C. has laid out a number of questions on the topic of legalization that he would like discussed. Those questions include:

(a) What are the implementation costs estimated by the federal government for a system to legalize cannabis in Canada, including a breakdown of costs in the areas of hospitalization . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation

The Uncertain Future of Public Disclosure of Private Facts

Almost exactly one year ago, I shared a decision by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice which created a new privacy tort (the second after Jones v. Tsige) for public disclosure of private facts.

One of the inherent limitations of the decision is that it was decided on summary judgment. The defendant failed to file a defence, and failed to appear on the motion, sending an email to the plaintiff stating, “… nor am I filing a defence so you can do what you need to.”

Here was yet another privacy tort, and one with the promise to provide . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions