Mos 2275 Chapter 2 Notes

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Management and Organizational Studies
Management and Organizational Studies 2275A/B
Desmond Mc Keon

Chapter 2: The Canadian Legal System Introduction  Canadian legal system: Machinery that governs the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government o Legislative branch  Pass laws in the form of statutes and regulations that impact on business operations  Ignorance or failure to comply or challenge laws may result in penalties or miss-out on opportunities. o Executive branch  Implements and generates policy that may be directed at business  Businesses may work to influence government by monitoring in-house issues, hiring lobbyists, and working through industry association. o Judicial branch  Provides rulings that not only resolve existing legal conflicts but also impact on future disputes  Constitutional law: o Supreme law that constrains and controls how the branches of government exercise power o Also upholds liberalism (political philosophy that emphasizes individual freedom as its key value) The Canadian Constitution  Not constrained in one document or place. The written elements include: o Constitution Act, 1867 (Divides legislative power between the federal and provincial governments) o Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom (Identifies the rights and freedoms that are guaranteed in Canada) o Relevant decisions by judges concerning constitutional law  Attend to a number of matters including o Admission of new provinces and territories to Canada o Provisions for amending the Constitution o Autonomy from the UK Parliament  Constitutional conventions: Important rules that are not enforceable by a court of law but that practically determines how a given power is exercised by governments and only in place because politicians have historically agreed to them. Legislative Branch of Government  Creates a form of law known as statute law or legislation  Statute law (legislation): Formal, written laws created or enacted by the legislative branch of government o Can be created by all levels of government: federal, provincial, and municipal o Federal government  Law-making jurisdiction provided by s.91 of the Constitution Act, 1867  Passed by the House of Commons then approved by the Senate  Jurisdiction over the Criminal Code of Canada in its ability to define new crimes, provide penalties, etc.  Affects business in banking, national or interprovincial transport, and communication. o Territorial government  Limited self-government, with subject to federal control o Provincial government  Law-making jurisdiction provided by s.92 of the Constitution Act, 1867  Passed by the Legislative Assembly  Affects business in most major fields o Municipal government  Law-making jurisdiction provided by the provincial legislature  Passed by the city council in the form of by-laws  Jurisdiction: The power that a given level of government has to enact laws o Exclusive jurisdiction: Jurisdiction that one level of government holds entirely on its own and not on a shared basis with another level  Ex. Criminal code o Concurrent jurisdiction: Jurisdiction that is shared between levels of government  Paramountcy: A doctrine that provides that federal laws prevail when there is conflicting or inconsistent federal and provincial laws. Also often upheld by the judicial government  Ex. health service, environment Executive Branch of Government  Formal executive: Branch of government responsible for the ceremonial features of government o Represented by the governor general or lieutenant governor that issues final approval of statute law  Political executive: Branch of government responsibility for day-to-day operations, including formulating and executing government policy, as well as administering all departments of government o Prime minister: Chief executive of the federal system o Premier: Chief executive of the provincial government o Cabinet: A body composed of all ministers heading the government departments, and well as the chief executive (prime minister or premier) o Typically lobbied by government to secure favourable treatment Judicial Branch of Government  Judiciary: Collective reference to judges.  Judges: Those appointed by federal and provincial governments to adjudicate on a variety of disputes, as well as to preside over criminal proceedings o Individuals rely on judges to settle disputes and criminal matters. o Businesses go through the courts to settle commercial disputes.  System of courts (Hierarchy of courts picture in page 31) o Trial courts:  Inferior court: Court with limited financial jurisdiction whose judges are appointed by provincial government  Divided by type of case: criminal, family, civil, etc.  Small claims court: Court that deals with claims up to a specified amount o Designed to be simpler, quicker, and less expensive than mainstream litigation. o Often without lawyers.  Superior court: Court with unlimited financial jurisdiction whose judges are appointed by the federal government  Entry level for more serious criminal matters.  Procedure is much more formal and technical, with all parties represented by lawyers. o Supreme Court of Canada: Final court for appeals in Canada  Usually only hear
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