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  • Constitutional Law accounts for 135 out of 812 casebriefs.

Style of causeRatio

Canada (Attorney General) v Mossop, [1993] 1 SCR 554

(1) Only identified grounds can be pursued in a human rights claim.

(2) Definitions in human rights legislation are generally interpreted broadly, but the definition given by Parliament in the statute has a good deal of authority in the court's decision on what falls under the definition and what does not.

Canada (House of Commons) v Vaid, [2005] 1 SCR 667

Parliamentary privileges are essential the proper functioning of Parliament, but when an issue comes into question regarding a category of privilege the courts will look at whether there still exists a necessity to exercise this privilege today.

Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v Tobiass, [1997] 3 SCR 391

One judge cannot interfere with the reasoning of another judge, as this goes to judicial independence.

Canada v. Khadr, [2008] 2 SCR 125

R v. Hape is the proper approach to extraterritoriality. Because of comity, Charter doesn’t apply unless there has been a violation of international human rights or the domestic state gives direct consent.

Canada Western Bank v Alberta [2007] 2 SCR 3

Prov laws will apply to bank so long as they don’t impair the core functions (vital and essential parts) of the bank
**If it does impair, then it is inapplicable

Promotion of insurance is not vital and essential to the undertaking of banking – and therefore banks are subject to prov licensing schemes re insurance – this only relates to “authorized types of insurance” and “personal accident insurance” not mandatory mortgage insurance

Canadian Council of Churches v Canada (Minister of Employment and Immigration), [1992] 1 SCR 236

Public Interest Standing Test
1. Is there a serious issue raised as to the invalidity of legislation in question?
2. Has it been established that the plaintiff is directly affected by the legislation, or if not, does the plaintiff have a genuine interest in its validity?
3. Is there another reasonable and effective way to bring the issue before the court?

Canadian Western Bank v The Queen in Right of Alberta, [2007] 2 SCR 3

Appropriate standard for IJI is impairment, rather than affect
**It must be more than merely affects – it is when the adverse impact of a law adopted by one level of gov increases it severity from “affecting” to “impairing” (w/o necessarily sterilizing or paralyzing) that the “core” competence of the other level of gov is placed in jeopardy

Capital Cities Communications v CRTC (1977), [1978] 2 SCR 141

*Feds have jurisdiction over radio (based on POGG and s.92(10)(a)
*Feds have jurisdiction over cable TV broadcasting (s.92(10)(a)) – obvious omission of POGG

Carnation Co. Ltd. v Quebec Agricultural Marketing Board [1968] SCR 238

Each transaction and each reg must be examined in relation to its own facts. Court looks at the intent of the scheme

Chamberlain v. Surrey School District, [2002] 4 SCR 710

Public schools must operate according to “strictly secular” principles (tolerance/discrimination), which cannot deny respect/recognition to another group in society. Parental “religious” views are considered but are not determinative of administrative decisions.

CIGOL v Saskatchewan, [1978] 2 S.C.R. 545

Provincial authority does not extend to fixing the price to be charged/received with respect to sale of goods in export market – this involves regulating interprovincial trade and encroaches federal jurisdiction

Citizen Insurance Company v Parsons (1881), 7 AC 96 (PC)

The authority of the dominion to legislate for the regulation of trade and commerce does not comprehend the power of the province to regulate by legislation the contracts of a particular business or trade.

Interpretive Framework from Parsons
**“…it is the duty of the Courts…to ascertain in what degree, and to what extent, authority to deal with matters falling within these classes of subjects exists in each legislature, and to define in the particular case before them the limits of their respective powers.”
**Does the statute fall to a provincial head of power?
***If so, could it also fall to a federal head of power?
***If so, and provincial and federal exercises of power conflict, the federal Act would be dominant or “paramount”

City of Toronto v Bell Telephone Co., [1905] AC 52

Indivisibility of undertakings – if undertaking is inter-provincial all of it is interprovincial (subsequently applied in Winner)

Consolidated Fastfrate Inc. v Western Canada Council of Teamsters, 2009 SCC 53

Transportation undertakings must engage in actual movement across borders to be inter-provincial and thus fed (must engage in interprovincial transit)

An undertaking that performs consolidation and deconsolidation and local pickup and delivery services does not become an interprovincial undertaking simply because it has an integrated national corporate structure and contracts with third-party interprovincial carriers

There is no indication that contracting alone can make intraprovincial undertakings subject to federal jurisdiction

Delgamuukw v British Columbia [1997] 3 SCR 1010

*The principle that prov law of general application means the prov can regulate Aboriginals but DOES NOT give the prov the right to extinguish Aboriginal rights
*Anytime Aboriginal right is extinguished requires clear and plain intent