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Legal Guide


Canada is a dualist nation. International obligations entered into by Canada, such as those contained in trade agreements, are not automatically incorporated into domestic law. Canada’s international obligations are incorporated into the domestic legal structure by the passage of specific implementing legislation, which will contain provisions to amend existing legislation as required. Individuals can only enforce obligations in Canada as they are implemented into domestic law.

Implementation of international obligations may require the cooperation of the provinces. Canada is a federal state where treaty-making power is vested in the federal government. Although the power to enter international treaties is exclusive to the government of Canada, the ability to implement obligations undertaken is necessarily limited by the division of powers between the federal government and the provinces, as set out in the Constitution Act (Canada) (see the discussion under the heading “Canadian Constitutional System”). If an obligation affects a matter that belongs exclusively to the provinces, compliance will require the province to pass implementing legislation. Given the wide breadth of powers that the provinces have, compliance with international obligations may not be within the federal government’s control. Regardless of whether failure to adhere to an international obligation occurs at the federal or the provincial level, only the federal government can defend Canada in an international forum.

Additional posts from the blog

Nov

12

Canada’s Anti-Spam Law – New Guidance on Offering Apps, Software

by Margot Patterson

CASL also prohibits installing a “computer program” – including an app, widget, software, or other executable data – on a computer system (e.g. computer, device) unless the program is installed with consent and complies with disclosure requirements. The provisions in CASL related to the installation of computer programs will come into force on January 15, 2015.

May

02

Environment Canada issues Hydrofluorocarbon reporting requirement

by Nalin Sahni

On April 7, 2014, the Minister of the Environment issued a Notice with respect to hydrofluorocarbons (the “Notice”), pursuant to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The Notice imposes reporting requirements on those who imported, exported, or manufactured certain hydrofluorocarbons (“HFCs”) from 2008 and 2012. A non-exhaustive list of HFCs subject to these reporting requirements can be found in Schedule 1 of the Notice.

Apr

17

“Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.”

by Andy Pushalik

In an interesting decision, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has ruled that an employer is not liable for discriminatory and harassing texts sent by a rogue employee to another of its workers.



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