Textbook Notes (368,430)
Canada (161,877)
Philosophy (118)
PHL271H1 (18)

May 13 LM Text Notes.doc

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Chad Horne

May 13: Appendix 2 - An Overview of the Canadian Legal System: Division of Powers and Essentials of Procedure  Canadian legal system exhibits classic liberal division of powers b/t 3 branches of government: the legislature, the executive, and the judiciary  the legislature = democratically elected representatives of the people - makes law  executive = body of professional government employees - implement and enforce law  judiciary = unelected officials appointed by the government - interpret law when question arises about what it requires in a particular case  dividing power this way secures the rule of law  law is legitimate when made by legislature b/c it reflects will of people, executive action is legitimate as long as officials stay within limits set by laws, judicial interpretation is legitimate as long as it's confined to seeing to it that executive officials stay within limits set by the law, instead of them seeing what they think is appropriate  judges have role of determining what law is, but there determinations must be regarding what law requires  citizens can be sure that government officials may not act except when law gives them warrant to do so  in Canada, role of determining the law is the task of the superior courts of general jurisdiction of each province (ex. Ontario Court = General Division  these courts have power to hear and decide any question of law  appeals against their decisions are to provincial courts of appeal, appeals provincial and federal courts are sent to Supreme Court of Canada  Supreme Court only hears cases with legal significance  for a person to bring a case before court they must have standing (in private issues, those who claim to have been wronged by others have standing to sue)  you only have standing to challenge government action if you can claim that some right of yours is jeopardized  public law governs relationship b/t government and citizen as well as b/t different branches of government (judges can also decide cases in private law, which involve interactions b/t people)  in Canada questions of private law are always tried by judges, not juries  the party who provides balance will lead to judge being in their favour; in a private law dispute, the one with a stronger case prevails  the losing party in a private suit must pay legal expenses of the winner  Canada has 2 distinct systems of private law: Code Civile
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