In Desmarteau, the defendant sought and obtained in
first instance, an order to permit its expert to examine the
personal computer of the plaintiff to identify information relevant
to the litigation. The first instance order instructed the expert
to exclude matters covered by solicitor-client privilege. The
Québec Court of Appeal reversed the first instance judgement
and rejected the defendant's request to examine the computer
because the request was premature, without sufficient justification
and without adequate restrictions as to the examination.
The Québec Court of Appeal indicated that any such order
must specify the identity and qualifications of the person who will
examine the computer contents, the precise description of what is
sought preferably using keywords, an evaluation of the cost, when
the examination will occur and its duration, where it will take
place, how the examination will be conducted, who will be present
for the examination and who will receive the report resulting from
the examination. In the absence of a judicial precedent, the Court
relied upon the framework established for Anton Piller orders. The
Court recognized that any such examination of a computer during
discovery before the filing of the defense is exceptional and
raises significant issues concerning privacy and the
solicitor-client privilege. The Québec Court of Appeal found
that the request by the defendant to examine a computer and order
issued granting the request did not provide an adequately
restricted framework to permit the examination of the
The Desmarteau decision provides extensive guidelines
as to the examination of computers before a defense is filed. It
also indicates that any such examination should rarely be permitted
at that time given uncertainty as to the issues raised by the
It's not often that our little blog intersects with such titanic struggles as the U.S. presidential race – and by using the term "titanic" I certainly don't mean to suggest that anything disastrous is in the future.
J.J. v. C.C., is an interesting case in which the court held that an automotive garage owes a duty to minor children to secure the vehicles on the premises by locking the cars and safely storing the car keys...
In Irwin v. Alberta Veterinary Medical Association, 2015 ABCA 396, the Alberta Court of Appeal found that the "ABVMA" failed to afford procedural fairness to a veterinarian undergoing an incapacity assessment.
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