Andrews v. Law Society of British Columbia, (1989) 91 N.R. 255 (SCC)

JudgeDickson, C.J.C., McIntyre, Lamer, Wilson, Le Dain, La Forest and L'Heureux-Dubé, JJ.
CourtSupreme Court (Canada)
Case DateFebruary 02, 1989
JurisdictionCanada (Federal)
Citations(1989), 91 N.R. 255 (SCC);[1989] 1 SCR 143;56 DLR (4th) 1;1989 CanLII 2 (SCC);34 BCLR (2d) 273;91 NR 255;[1989] CarswellBC 16;JE 89-259;[1989] SCJ No 6 (QL);10 CHRR 5719;13 ACWS (3d) 347;[1989] 2 WWR 289;[1989] ACS no 6;25 CCEL 255;36 CRR 193

Andrews v. B.C. Law Soc. (1989), 91 N.R. 255 (SCC)

MLB headnote and full text

[French language version follows English language version]

[La version française vient à la suite de la version anglaise]

.........................

The Law Society of British Columbia and The Attorney General of British Columbia and The Attorney General for Ontario, The Attorney General of Quebec, The Attorney General of Nova Scotia, The Attorney General of Saskatchewan, The Attorney General for Alberta, The Federation of Law Societies of Canada v. Mark David Andrews and Gorel Elizabeth Kinersly and The Women's Legal Education and Action Fund, The Coalition of Provincial Organizations of the Handicapped, The Canadian Association of University Teachers and The Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations

(19955, 19956)

Indexed As: Andrews v. Law Society of British Columbia

Supreme Court of Canada

Dickson, C.J.C., McIntyre, Lamer, Wilson, Le Dain, La Forest and L'Heureux-Dubé, JJ.

February 2, 1989.

Summary:

Andrews, a permanent resident of Canada and a British subject, fulfilled all the requirements for admission to the practice of law in British Columbia except the requirement of Canadian citizenship in s. 42 of the Barristers and Solicitors Act, R.S.B.C. 1979, c. 26.

Andrews applied for a declaration that s. 42 violated s. 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The Trial Court dismissed the application - See (1985), 22 D.L.R.(4th) 9. Andrews appealed.

The British Columbia Court of Appeal allowed the appeal - See 27 D.L.R.(4th) 600. The Law Society of British Columbia appealed.

The Supreme Court of Canada, McIntyre and Lamer, JJ., dissenting dismissed the appeal and held that s. 42 violated s. 15 of the Charter and that s. 42 was not justified under s. 1 of the Charter.

Barristers and Solicitors - Topic 346

Admission to practice - Qualifications - Citizenship - [See first Civil Rights - Topic 8348 below].

Civil Rights - Topic 902

Discrimination defined - The Supreme Court of Canada stated a definition of discrimination for purposes of s. 15 of the Charter - See paragraphs 64 to 66.

Civil Rights - Topic 5503

Equality defined - The Supreme Court of Canada referred to a definition of equality for purposes of s. 15 of the Charter - See paragraph 55 - The court disapproved of the "similarly situated" test because it ignores "any consideration of the nature of the law" - See paragraphs 57 to 59.

Civil Rights - Topic 5504

Equality and protection of the law - "Without discrimination" defined (Charter, s. 15) - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that the words "without discrimination" in s. 15 limit the forbidden distinctions to those which involve prejudice or disadvantage - See paragraphs 72 and 75.

Civil Rights - Topic 5514

Equality and protection of the law - Charter, s. 15, effect of - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that s. 15 includes four basic rights - See paragraph 62.

Civil Rights - Topic 8348

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Application - Exceptions - Reasonable limits prescribed by law (s. 1) - The Supreme Court of Canada affirmed that the Canadian citizenship requirement for lawyers in British Columbia violated s. 15(1) of the Charter - Also the court held that the citizenship requirement was not saved by s. 1 of the Charter because the citizenship requirement did not meet the tests for overriding a constitutional right - See paragraphs 8 to 17.

Civil Rights - Topic 8348

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Application - Exceptions - Reasonable limits prescribed by law (s. 1) - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that a complainant must show the violation of a Charter right but the Crown has the onus of establishing that the law is justified under s. 1 of the Charter - See paragraphs 68, 69 and 80.

Civil Rights - Topic 8663

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - Purpose of s. 15 - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that s. 15 is designed to protect those groups who suffer social, political and legal disadvantage in our society - See paragraph 10.

Civil Rights - Topic 8664

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15), application - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that s. 15(1) applies to all persons whether citizens or not - See paragraph 78.

Civil Rights - Topic 8666

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - Meaning of "discrimination" - The Supreme Court of Canada referred to the proper meaning of the words "without discrimination" in s. 15 and the relationship between s. 15 and s. 1 - The court stated that a complainant under s. 15(1) must not only show unequal treatment but must also show discrimination in the sense of prejudice or disadvantage to the complainant resulting from the impugned distinction or classification; and, in addition, the discrimination must be based on the irrelevant personal differences enumerated in s. 15 or on analogous grounds - See paragraphs 72 to 76.

Civil Rights - Topic 8668

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - What constitutes a breach of s. 15 - S. 42 of the British Columbia Barristers and Solicitors Act required that an applicant for admission to the practice of law be a Canadian citizen - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that s. 42 was discriminatory and a breach of s. 15(1) of the Charter - See paragraphs 3, 77 and 78.

Civil Rights - Topic 8671

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - Enumerated categories - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that the enumerated categories in s. 15 will change as society changes and will include in the future, groups not recognized today as a "discrete and insular" minority - See paragraph 6.

Civil Rights - Topic 8672

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - Analogous categories - The Supreme Court of Canada stated that non-citizens fell into an analogous category to those specifically enumerated in s. 15 - See paragraph 5.

Cases Noticed:

United States v. Carolene Products Co. (1938), 304 U.S. 144, refd to. [paras. 4, 78].

R. v. Oakes, [1986] 1 S.C.R. 103; 65 N.R. 87; 14 O.A.C. 335; 24 C.C.C.(3d) 321; 50 C.R.(3d) 1; 26 D.L.R.(4th) 200, refd to. [paras. 9, 69].

R. v. Edwards Books and Art Ltd. - see R. v. Videoflicks Ltd. et al.

Re Dickenson and Law Society of Alberta (1978), 10 A.R. 120; 84 D.L.R.(3d) 189, refd to. [para. 14].

Buck v. Bell (1927), 274 U.S. 200, refd to. [para. 24].

Kask v. Shimizu (1986), 69 A.R. 343; 4 W.W.R. 154, refd to. [para. 28].

Fontiero v. Richardson (1973), 411 U.S. 677, refd to. [para. 29].

In re Griffiths (1973), 413 U.S. 717, refd to. [para. 44].

Dennis v. United States, 339 U.S. 162, refd to. [para. 55].

R. v. Videoflicks Ltd. et al., [1986] 2 S.C.R. 713; 71 N.R. 161; 19 O.A.C. 239; 55 C.R.(3d) 193, refd to. [paras. 11, 69].

R. v. Big M Drug Mart Ltd., [1985] 1 S.C.R. 295; 58 N.R. 81; 60 A.R. 161; 18 C.C.C.(3d) 385; 18 D.L.R.(4th) 321; [1985] 3 W.W.R. 481, refd to. [paras. 55, 61].

Reference Re Family Benefits Act (1986), 75 N.S.R.(2d) 338; 186 A.P.R. 338 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 56].

Reference Re Use of French in Criminal Proceedings in Saskatchewan (1987), 58 Sask.R.. 161; 44 D.L.R.(4th) 16 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 56].

Smith, Klein & French Laboratories v. Canada (Attorney General), [1978] 2 F.C. 359; 78 N.R. 30 (F.C.A.), refd to. [paras. 56, 72].

R. v. Ertel (1987), 20 O.A.C. 257; 35 C.C.C.(3d) 398 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 56].

Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), 163 U.S. 637, refd to. [para. 57].

R. v. Gonzales (1962), 132 C.C.C. 237, refd to. [para. 57].

R. v. Drybones, [1970] S.C.R. 282, refd to. [para. 57].

Bliss v. Attorney General of Canada, [1979] 1 S.C.R. 183; 23 N.R. 527, refd to. [para. 58].

Mahe, Martel, Dube and Association de l'Ecole Georges et Julia Bugnet v. Alberta (1987), 80 A.R. 161; 54 Alta. L.R.(2d) 212 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 59].

Reference Re Compulsory Arbitration, [1987] 1 S.C.R. 313; 74 N.R. 99; 78 A.R. 1, refd to. [para. 61].

Attorney General of Canada v. Lavell, [1974] S.C.R. 1349, refd to. [para. 62].

Reference Re Roman Catholic Separate High Schools Funding (1986), 13 O.A.C. 241; 53 O.R.(2d) 513 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 63].

Reference Re Public Service Employee Relations Act (Alta.) - see Reference Re Compulsory Arbitration.

Reference Re An Act to Amend the Education Act - see Reference Re Roman Catholic Separate High Schools Funding.

Ontario Human Rights Commission and O'Malley v. Simpsons-Sears, [1985] 2 S.C.R. 536; 64 N.R. 161; 12 O.A.C. 241, refd to. [para. 66].

Canadian National Railway Co. v. Canada (Canadian Human Rights Commission) - see Action travail de femmes v. Canadian National Railway Company et al.

Action travail de femmes v. Canadian National Railway Company et al., [1987] 1 S.C.R. 1114; 76 N.R. 161, refd to. [para. 66].

Southam Inc. v. Hunter, [1984] 2 S.C.R. 145; 55 N.R. 241; 55 A.R. 291; 27 B.L.R. 297; 33 Alta. L.R.(2d) 193; 9 C.R.R. 355; 14 C.C.C.(3d) 97; 11 D.L.R.(4th) 641; 2 C.P.R.(3d) 1; [1984] 6 W.W.R. 577; 41 C.R.(3d) 97; 84 D.T.C. 6467, refd to. [para. 67].

Bhinder v. Canadian National Railway Co., [1985] 2 S.C.R. 561; 63 N.R. 185, refd to. [para. 68].

R. v. MacKay, [1980] 2 S.C.R. 370; 33 N.R. 1, refd to. [para. 69].

Graham v. Richardson (1971), 403 U.S. 365, refd to. [para. 78].

Statutes Noticed:

Barristers and Solicitors Act, R.S.B.C. 1979, c. 26, sect. 42 [para. 48].

Canadian Bill of Rights, R.S.C. 1970, App. III.

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, 1982, sect. 15 [para. 48].

European Convention on Human Rights, 23 U.N.T.S. 222 [para. 69].

U.S. Constitution, 14th Amendment [para. 69].

Authors and Works Noticed:

Schaar, John H., Equality of Opportunity and Beyond, Nomos IX: Equality [para. 55].

Tussman, J.T. and tenBroek, J., The Equal Protection of Laws (1949), 37 Calif. L. Rev. 341 [para. 56].

Aristotle, Ethica Nichomacea, trans W. Ross, Book V3, p. 1131a-6 [para. 56].

Lepofsky, M. David and Schwartz, H., "Case Note" (1988), 67 Can. Bar Rev. 115 [para. 57].

Tarnopolsky, W., Discrimination and the Law (2nd Ed. 1985) [para. 65].

Hogg, Peter, Constitutional Law of Canada (2nd Ed.), p. 800 [para. 70].

Ely, J.H., Democracy and Distrust (1980), p. 151 [para. 5].

Mill, John Stuart, Considerations of Representative Government, Book III [para. 5].

Head, Ivan L., The Stranger in Our Midst: A Sketch of the Legal Status of the Alien in Canada [1964] Can. Yearbook of International Law 107 [para. 26].

Lenoir, Robert L., Citizenship as a Requirement for the Practice of Law in Ontario (1981), 13 Ottawa Law Rev. 527, p. 534 [para. 34].

Counsel:

Irwin Nathanson, Q.C., and Rhys Davies, for the appellant Law Society of British Columbia;

Joseph J. Arvay, for the appellant Attorney General of British Columbia;

Elizabeth C. Goldberg and David Lepofsky, for the Attorneys General of Ontario;

Jean-Yves Bernard and Julie Hudon, for the Attorney General of Quebec;

Alison Scott, for the Attorney General of Nova Scotia;

Robert G. Richards, for the Attorney General of Saskatchewan;

Richard F. Taylor, for the Attorney General of Alberta;

P.B.C. Pepper, Q.C., for the Federation of Law Societies of Canada;

D.G. Cowper and W.S. Martin, for the respondents Mark David Andrews and Gorel Elizabeth Kinersly;

Mary Eberts and Gwen Brodsky, for the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (Leaf);

J. David Baker, for the Coalition of Provincial Organizations of the Handicapped;

Steven Barrett, for the Canadian Association of University Teachers and the Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations.

This appeal was heard by Dickson, C.J.C., McIntyre, Lamer, Wilson, Le Dain, La Forest and L'Heureux-Dubé, JJ., of the Supreme Court of Canada on October 5 and 6, 1987.

The decision of the Supreme Court of Canada was delivered in both official languages on February 2, 1989 and the following opinions were filed:

Wilson, J. - see paragraphs 1 to 18;

La Forest, J. - see paragraphs 19 to 47;

McIntyre, J., dissenting - see paragraphs 48 to 89.

Dickson, C.J.C., and L'Heureux-Dubé, J., concurred with Wilson, J.

Lamer, J., concurred with McIntyre, J.

Le Dain, J., took no part in the judgment.

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