Earlier this month, Advocates for the Rule of Law appeared as an intervenor in the Bell/NFL and Vavilov appeals at the Supreme Court.
Prior to the hearing, the Court advised the parties that these appeals would present an opportunity to reconsider the Court’s seminal decision in Dunsmuir v. New Brunswick, released a decade ago. Consequently, various organizations, including ARL, moved to intervene in the case. The Court permitted all of the proposed intervenors to deliver written materials, but only some were invited to make oral submission at the hearing. ARL was fortunate to be among that select group.
ARL took the unique position, which has since been more or less adopted by Professor Audrey Macklin and other academics, that the standard of review analysis should primarily be an exercise in statutory interpretation (though, unlike Professor Macklin who would consider “access to justice” as being among the principles of statutory interpretation, ARL would take the view that those principles should be confined to the traditional canons). ARL’s factum can be read here.
ARL’s lead counsel, Adam Goldenberg made outstanding oral submissions before the Court. He articulated ARL’s position in clear and eloquent prose and called on the Court to abandon its repeated attempts to simplify to law of judicial review with abstract categories, and instead look to the text, context and purpose of statutes to determine whether the legislature actually intended deference. Mr. Goldenberg’s submissions can be viewed here at approximately the 1:55:00 mark.
Once again, ARL would like to thank its legal team at McCarthy Tétrault, especially Adam Goldenberg, for their hard work and expert advocacy.