R. v. Imperial Tobacco Ltd.: More Restrictions on Public Authority Tort Liability

  • Lewis N. Klar, Q.C. Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Alberta


Since 2001, it has become very difficult for claimants to successfully sue public authorities for their negligent conduct, particularly in relation to their regulatory functions. This primarily has been due to the refined duty of care formula established by the Supreme Court of Canada in Cooper v. Hobart and Edwards v. Law Society of Upper Canada. As a result of their 2011 R. v. Imperial Tobacco Ltd. decision, the Supreme Court of Canada has restricted even further the ability of private claimants to successfully sue governments for their regulatory failures.
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