Resolving R. v. Jordan linguistically: Why the dissent was right

It was the most significant Supreme Court of Canada decision of 2016, and it continues to dog the justice system.  Last July, R. v. Jordan set 18 months as the presumptive ceiling for criminal cases in the provincial courts, and 30 months in superior courts (or cases in provincial courts after a preliminary inquiry).  Canadian courts do… Read More

Why some courts don’t get consent in sex offence trials

Canadian courts have recently come under intense scrutiny over the treatment of complainants in trials of sexual assault offences.  From the judicial discipline proceedings against Judge Robin Camp, who asked the assault complainant why she “couldn’t just keep [her] knees together,” and referred to her as “the accused,”  to the acquittal of taxi driver Bassam… Read More

Guindon v. Canada: Does the s. 11 Charter analysis stand up to bilingual construction?

In Guindon v. Canada, released today, the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the appeal of a tax lawyer acting as a tax adviser, Julie Guindon, for penalties imposed by the Minister of National Revenue for issuance of tax receipts containing false statements.  Guindon argued she was entitled to procedural safeguards under s. 11 of the Canadian Charter… Read More

Obergefell v. Hodges’ invocation of liberty and due process, instead of substantive equality

The release today of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges will today be debated by popular pundits, and in the days and years to come, studied by legal scholars and school children.  Beyond the debate among American conservatives and liberals, the decision of a sharply divided court continues a philosophical debate as old… Read More

Canada’s Marbury v. Madison? Not quite.

As reported in the Globe and Mail, Justice Colin Westman has joined a chorus of Canadian judges refusing to apply the law, as a protest against the federal government’s criminal sentencing legislation.  Whatever the merits of their political views on the subject, the rebellious judges threaten a constitutional showdown which they will not, and should… Read More

CGL Policies – the Russian Doll of Business Insurance

Few subjects beguile new lawyers more than the interpretation of commercial general liability insurance policies (CGL). This includes many corporate-commercial lawyers contributing to complex agreements running into hundreds of pages.  Show them a CGL form, and their eyes glaze over. But most CGL policies are only a few pages long, and the longest run a… Read More

Case Law

The reward for approaching every case with an open mind … Is the chance to see your name in print as counsel. Lee Akazaki has appeared as counsel in over 79 judicial decisions reported in Quicklaw, as well as 24 decisions in print reports such as the Ontario Reports (O.R.), Dominion Law Reports (D.L.R.), Ontario Appeal Cases (O.A.C.), Canadian… Read More

Wrongful Birth: An Ironic Name for a Cause of Action in the Law of Medical Malpractice

Click on the link to read my article, “Wrongful Birth: An Ironic Name for a Cause of Action in the Law of Medical Malpractice,”  The Advocates’ Quarterly Vol. 22, 1999, reprinted by On Examination, Medico-Legal Society of Toronto, Vol. 8, No. 2, 1999, 22AdvocQ102.  I have been proven wrong through subsequent case law, but I think… Read More