The Common Law of Defamation Fails to Enter the Age of the Charter


  • June Ross



In this article the author criticizes the reluctance of the Courts to extend the influence of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to the common law as it applies between private parties. The author explores the courts' application of the Charter to the common law, tracing the development of the jurisprudence through several cases, and goes on to offer an analysis of the implications of this judicial stance for the protection of freedom of expression in the context of defamation law. The author argues for a reassessment of the current law of defamation, and contends that the Charter's reach should extend to the common law of defamation.