We routinely appear in constitutional law and administrative law cases at all levels of Canadian courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada. We have also appeared at public inquiries and arbitrations.
Our expertise encompasses all aspects of constitutional law, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, federalism, aboriginal rights, and executive powers.
Our cases often encompass related questions of public international law and international human rights law.
We are frequently retained by other lawyers across Canada to work with them on complex constitutional cases, including serving as co-counsel.
We have appeared as counsel for, or co-counsel with, legal clinics and public interest organizations, including:
- Human Rights Watch
- British Columbia Civil Liberties Association
- Canadian Constitution Foundation
- Colour of Poverty—Colour of Change (COP-COC) Network
- Hamilton Community Legal Clinic
- South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario
We also have an extensive counsel practice. This includes providing advice on complex constitutional issues to:
- corporations, large and small
- legal clinics
- governments, including Canadian and international governments
- government commissions and committees
- public sector agencies
- industry trade associations
- international organizations
Canadian Constitution Foundation v. AG Canada2022 - Present
Challenge to legality and constitutionality of public order emergency declared under the Emergencies Act.
Heegsma v. City of Hamilton2022 - Present
Charter challenge to homeless encampment evictions on the basis of sections 7 and 15 discrimination on the basis of race, indigeneity, sex, marital status and disability, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Public Order Emergency Commission2022
Public inquiry into public order emergency declared under the Emergencies Act.
Haseeb v. Imperial Oil2022
Ontario Human Rights Code challenge to citizenship discrimination in employment.
Opinion on Charter issues arising out of COVID-19 vaccine passports.
Bakan v. Canada2021 - Present
Charter challenge to Canada’s failure to regulate social media platforms to protect freedom of expression under section 2(b) of the Charter.
The New Tree Fruit Varieties Development Council (the Council) (Charter, freedom of association) v. Devin Jell et al.2021
Opinion for the Council on the Charter and freedom of association.
Bjorkquist et al. v. AG Canada2021 - Present
Charter challenge to derivative citizenship provisions of the Citizenship Act, on the basis of section 15 discrimination based on national origin and sex, section 6 mobility rights, and section 7.
Zoghbi v. Air Canada2021 - Present
Charter challenge to decision of the Canadian Human Rights Commission, in a case of racial profiling, that international aviation exempt from remedy of damages under Canadian Human Rights Act, on the basis of section 15 of the Charter and the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination.
Hutlet v. AG Manitoba & AG Canada2021 - Present
Charter challenge to clawback of the CPP disability pension from provincial disability benefits, on the basis of sections 7 and 15 of the Charter and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Cool World v. Twitter2021 - Present
Involved whether Twitter is subject to good faith, public policy and unconscionability doctrines in contract law that incorporate the right to freedom of expression and render void some of its policies on promoted tweets and advertisements.
Annamie Paul v. Green Party of Canada2021 - 2022
Arbitration of internal party proceedings.
Jacob v. AG Canada2020 - Present
Charter challenge to Canada Emergency Response Benefit, Canada Recovery Benefit and Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit for discriminating against disabled workers in breach of section 15 of the Charter and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Turner v. Death Investigation Oversight Council2020 - Present
First judicial review of Ontario’s oversight body for forensic pathology established in response to the Goudge Inquiry.
NM v. Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board2020
Contempt powers of the Human Rights Tribunal under the Ontario Human Rights Code.
Eric Victor Cojocaru, an infant by his Guardian Ad Litem, Monica Cojocaru et al. v. British Columbia Women’s Hospital and Health Center et al.2012
Factum for Supreme Court of Canada, for law firm Whitlaw & Twinning (judicial ethics).
Opinion on a constitutional challenge to proceedings brought by the Commissioner of Competition seeking an administrative penalty of hundreds of millions of dollars.
Khadr v. Canada (Justice) & Canada (Prime Minister) v. Khadr2008
Charter rights of Canadian Guantanamo Bay detainee under section 7.
Opinion on a Charter remedies dispute involving billions of dollars arising out of a constitutional challenge to public sector collective bargaining legislation.
Opinion on a high stakes federal-provincial dispute over proposed federal legislation to allow for an elected Senate.
Opinion on a claim for compensation by members of an industry trade association in response to the cancellation of licenses by a provincial regulatory authority.
Charkaoui v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration)2005
Charter challenge to security certificates under section 7.
Opinion on federal and provincial jurisdiction over agriculture, in the context of a potential challenge to provincial legislation.
Opinion on a constitutional challenge to the failure of a provincial government to fully fund therapy for autistic children.
Opinion on a constitutional challenge to the decision of a provincially-funded social service provider on an issue involving child welfare.
Kmart v. UFCW, B.C.1998
Factum, Supreme Court of Canada, (Charter, freedom of expression).
A British Columbia Position on National Unity, Report to the Hon. Andrew Petter, Minister Responsible for Intergovernmental Affairs.
Kmart v. UFCW1996
Factum, B.C. Court of Appeal, June, (leave to Supreme Court of Canada granted).
Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs Concerning Bill C-221995
Written submissions on Pearson Airport privatization (with David Schneiderman).
Charter and Freedom of Expression1995
Opinion for the B.C. Ministry of Health on abortion clinic bubble zone legislation (Charter, freedom of association).
Labour Law Reform1992
Memorandum for the B.C. Ministry of Labour on Mandatory Certification Votes, Committee of Special Advisors.
Labour Law Reform1992
Memorandum for the B.C. Ministry of Labour on Picketing, Committee of Special Advisors
Labour Law Reform1992
Memorandum for the B.C. Ministry of Labour on Collective Bargaining in the Fishing Industry, Committee of Special Advisors.