This was a busy week at the Supreme Court of Canada, with
numerous developments likely to be of interest to Canadian
A very significant labour law appeal —
Saskatchewan Federation of Labour v.
Saskatchewan, on appeal from the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal — was
argued on May 16, 2014. At issue was a Charter challenge
to two pieces of provincial legislation. The statutes had,
respectively, (i) introduced restrictions on the ability of public
sector workers who provide essential services to engage in strike
activity, and (ii) changed existing provincial labour legislation
to make it more difficult for unions to obtain certification as
bargaining agents and to broaden the scope of permissible
communications between employers and their employees. A link to the
recorded proceedings can be found here. A link to the facta of the parties and
of the (many) interveners can be found here.
In addition, the Supreme Court refused leave to appeal in a
significant number of interesting and relevant proceedings:
The Court refused to
grant leave in Cold Lake First Nations v. The Queen in Right
of Alberta, in which a divided Alberta Court of Appeal had
permitted a campground development to go forward, after finding
that the provincial government had fulfilled its duty to consult
with the affected First Nation.
The Court likewise
refused to grant leave in ACE INA Insurance v. Associated Electric &
Gas Insurance Services Limited, in which the Ontario Court
of Appeal had determined a dispute between a primary insurer and an
excess insurer — relating to the insurers' liability to
defend following an explosion in an electrical transformer —
by confirming that the excess insurer had no duty to make equitable
The Supreme Court
refused to grant leave to appeal in Ganitano v. Metro Vancouver Housing
Corporation, a ruling in which the British Columbia Court
of Appeal had confirmed that the equitable remedy of relief from
forfeiture (under s. 24 of the B.C. Law and Equity Act)
was not available under the provincial Residential Tenancy
Leave was also
refused in a second appeal from British Columbia
— Hungerford Tomyn Lawrenson and Nichols v.
Wilson — in which the BCCA had ruled that a law
firm's recovery of $16 million under a contingency agreement
should be reduced to $5 million.
Lastly, the Supreme Court refused to
grant leave to appeal the ruling of the Federal Court of Appeal in
Kossow v. Canada. The FCA had dismissed
the taxpayer's appeal of her reassessment, rejecting claimed
income tax credits generated through a leveraged charitable
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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