Administrative Law Matters
Commentary on developments in administrative law, particularly judicial review of administrative action by common law courts.
2023 Administrative Law & Governance Colloquium: “The Legitimacy of the State”
The topic for the 2023 edition of the Administrative Law & Governance Colloquium was “The Legitimacy of the State”: The legitimacy of contemporary liberal democratic states is in a state of flux. Managing the effects of globalization, responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and fighting escalating inflation have prompted serious questions about public administration in the […] Read more
Notwithstanding Administrative Law?
The ‘notwithstanding’ clause of the Constitution of Canada (contained in s. 33 of the Constitution Act, 1982) provides as follows: 33 (1) Parliament or the legislature of a province may expressly declare in an Act of Parliament or of the legislature, as the case may be, that the Act or a provision thereof shall operate notwithstanding a […] Read more
Maybe it Does Matter, After All
I recently highlighted Professor Andrew Green’s paper on the effect — or not! — of Supreme Court of Canada decisions in administrative law. I am happier to report that a new paper published in Canadian Public Administration by David Said comes to the conclusion that the Court’s decisions can be significant: “Navigating entangled terrain: The […] Read more
Administrative Tribunals in Canada: Constitutional Subordinates or Equal Partners?
I have posted a new paper to SSRN, “Administrative Tribunals in Canada: Constitutional Subordinates or Equal Partners“, a chapter in a forthcoming edited collection on Administrative Tribunals in the Common Law World. Here is the abstract: In this Chapter, I explore the tension between two propositions in Canadian public law. On the one hand, administrative […] Read more
Refreshing the Places Other Frameworks Cannot Reach
Heineken once ran an advertising campaign claiming it was the beer that refreshed the parts other beers cannot. As Ian MacKenzie notes in a kind review of A Culture of Justification: Vavilov and the Future of Administrative Law, I think that the framework for judicial review of administrative action set out in Canada (Minister of […] Read more
Clarity on the Challenges for Systemic Challenges: Canadian Council for Refugees v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2023 SCC 17
The Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Canadian Council for Refugees v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2023 SCC 17 sets out some important principles about challenges to government action at the intersection of constitutional and administrative law. On balance, I think the decision limits the potential for systemic challenges to complex statutory and regulatory regimes […] Read more
Administrative Law & Governance Colloquium 2024
The theme for next year’s Administrative Law & Governance Colloquium is “Executive Power”: Executive power has been the site of passionate debate in liberal democracies for many centuries. In recent decades, authority has concentrated in the hands of presidents and prime ministers, with voters increasingly looking to these office holders to give effect to their […] Read more
The Constitutional Foundations of Judicial Review in Canada
Acting for the intervener Canadian Telecommunications Association, I filed a factum in the upcoming Yatar appeal at the Supreme Court of Canada this morning. Here is an extract about the constitutional foundations of judicial review. The factum will be available here in due course, along with all the others. It is useful to set out […] Read more
Mark Mancini’s Sunday Evening Administrative Review
A quick note to congratulate Mark Mancini on reaching 100 issues of his Sunday Evening Administrative Review. The 100th issue features a nice essay by Justice David Stratas on the utility of Mark’s newsletter and the application of the Vavilov framework. Subscribers to the ‘SEAR’ get a weekly digest of important administrative law cases, along […] Read more
Some Features of Pre-Confederation Judicial Review in Canada
The supervisory jurisdiction is a core function of Canada’s superior courts. It cannot be exercised by another body, nor can access to the supervisory jurisdiction be precluded, as this superintending and reforming power has a solid constitutional foundation in s. 96 of the Constitution Act, 1867. (The sweep of these propositions will be in issue […] Read more
Why is Administrative Law so Complicated? Attitudes to the Administrative State
I have uploaded a pre-proof version of the first chapter of A Culture of Justification: Vavilov and the Future of Administrative Law to SSRN: “Why is Administrative Law So Complicated?” Here is a final extract from the chapter: It should be clear from the discussion so far in this Chapter that there is no ‘Constitution’ […] Read more