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Trespass, Campus Encampments, and the Charter

On July 2, Justice Koehnen of the Ontario Superior Court granted an interlocutory injunction to enjoin protesters to remove the encampment from the Front Campus of the University of Toronto (University of Toronto (Governing Council) v. Doe et al., 2024 ONSC 3755). In its extensive reasons, the Court squarely addresses the principal wrong posed by the encampment: it constituted a ...

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Law Over Labels: A Comment on Ahluwalia v Ahluwalia

According to the venerable Aristotelian maxim, the rule of law demands that one must “treat like cases alike.” In a forthcoming paper, we argue that a recent proliferation of novel tort species in Canada, through the purported recognition of the nominate torts “online harassment”, “harassment”, “public disclosure of private facts”, and “family violence”, is inconsistent with this quintessential facet of ...

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Statement on the Departure of Justice Brown

Advocates for the Rule of Law is saddened to learn of the retirement of Justice Russell Brown from the Supreme Court of Canada. Over the past 8 years, he has been a singular voice seeking to bring doctrinal coherence, fidelity to precedent, and legal predictability to vastly different areas of Canadian law. All the while, he has taken the lead ...

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“Threats to the Security of Canada”: The Case for a Single Stringent Standard

I: Introduction On what basis can the Governor in Council reasonably conclude that there are “threats to the security of Canada” that justify invoking the Emergencies Act[1]? This question was front and centre during the recently concluded fact-finding hearings of the Public Order Emergency Commission (the “Commission”). What appeared at the outset to be a straightforward matter of statutory interpretation ...

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Trial Lawyers extends its tentacles

Recently, in Poorkid Investments v HMTQ,Broad J of the Ontario Superior Court declared s 17 of the Crown Liability and Proceedings Act, 2019 (“CLPA”) unconstitutional. The provision imposed various procedural hurdles on plaintiffs who seek to bring claims against the Crown or its officers for “the tort of misfeasance in public office or a tort based on bad faith respecting anything ...

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Australian Court Upholds the Rule of Law in International Tax Case

Last month the High Court of Australia released its decision in Addy v Commissioner of Taxation [2021] HCA 24 (“Addy”). The Australian apex court’s decision has received an unusual (for an income tax case) amount of attention as “the backpacker’s case”. But the High Court’s ruling is interesting for a number of reasons and should be on the radar of ...

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ARL Returns to the Supreme Court of Canada

On October 12, 2021, Advocates for the Rule of Law returned to the Supreme Court of Canada in Her Majesty the Queen, et al. v. David Sullivan, et al. and Her Majesty the Queen, et al. v. Thomas Chan, et al. (SCC 39270) to make submissions on the effect of a declaration under s. 52(1) of the Constitution Act, 1982 ...

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The Limits of a Culture of Justification

In Vavilov, the Supreme Court of Canada held that, to the extent possible, the law of judicial review should “develop and strengthen a culture of justification in administrative decision making” (Vavilov, at para 2). What is this culture of justification as adopted in Vavilov? It asks decision-makers to ensure that their exercise of delegated public power can be justified to ...

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Quebec’s Bill 96 is an Unconstitutional Attempt to Amend the Constitution of Canada

Section 159 of the current Quebec bill on “the official and common language of Quebec, French” intends to amend the Constitution Act, 1867 by introducing in it what follows: FUNDAMENTAL CHARACTERISTICS OF QUEBEC90Q.1. Quebecers form a nation.90Q.2. French is the only official language of Québec. It is also the common language of the Quebec nation. This scheme has been referred ...

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