We work in the areas of public law and private law that we know best. We believe that by targeting select areas of the law, we enhance our legal judgment and effectiveness, so we can work creatively and effectively for each client.
even if they are in the future.
We build a positive ethos through our practice
Constitutional and Public Law
We have advocated for the rights of Indigenous peoples, women, LGBTQ people, persons with disabilities, persons who use illicit drugs, political and other dissenters, and poor people. We have advocated for clients challenging the constitutionality of laws and for those who have been subjected to unconstitutional state action.
Litigation of Indigenous Interests
We represent Indigenous clients in Aboriginal rights and title claims; proceedings to ascertain and interpret treaty rights; claims for interference with and damage to our clients’ lands; and other litigation aimed at protecting the rights and interests of Indigenous peoples.
We counsel and represent clients at all stages of the dispute resolution process, from pre-commencement advice and assessment, through pre-trial steps, mediation, arbitration or trial and, where appropriate, appeal. We are known for finding pathways to equitable solutions in complex disputes, and we have a solid record in the court and arbitration room.
Work-Related Legal Issues
We represent clients with employment-related legal issues, including personal and sexual harassment complaints and work-related human rights complaints. We also help individuals obtain appropriate compensation for workplace injuries, work-related psychological conditions and occupational diseases.
Our Notable Cases
“If we desire respect for the law, we must first make the law respectable.” -Louis D. Brandeis
- 23 June 2022
- 22 September 2021
- 23 August 2019
- 27 February 2019
- 15 June 2018
- 6 April 2018
- 15 November 2017
- 25 September 2017
- 24 June 2016
- 10 October 2014
- 6 June 2013
- 23 November 2011
- 30 September 2011
- 26 October 2010
- 5 May 2006
Attorney General of British Columbia v Council of Canadians with DisabilitiesSupreme Court of Canada affirms and clarifies the criteria for public interest standing to bring constitutional claims to court.
Michel v SaskatchewanSaskatchewan Court of Appeal dismisses attempts to end First Nation’s case for trespass due to the flooding of reserve land by a provincially-owned hydroelectric power dam.
Single Mothers’ Alliance of BC Society et al. v British ColumbiaSupreme Court of BC denies applications to dismiss Charter challenge to BC’s scheme of legal aid for family law proceedings involving issues of family violence.
Chinatown and Area Business Association v Canada (Attorney General)Federal Court of Canada upholds Health Canada’s decision to allow supervised injection services at three locations in Edmonton.
Law Society of British Columbia v Trinity Western UniversitySupreme Court of Canada upholds the Law Society’s power to take steps to promote equality and ensure equal access to the legal profession.
Bendera v Workers’ Compensation Appeal TribunalSupreme Court of BC finds that the Tribunal’s legal interpretation of the “mental disorder” provisions of the Workers Compensation Act was “fundamentally inconsistent with the legislature’s stated purpose … and the scheme of the Workers Compensation Act as a whole”.
Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre v CharbonneauA case about injunctions and protecting freedom of expression on matters of public interest.
West Moberly First Nations v British ColumbiaSupreme Court of BC interprets Treaty 8 and issues a declaration about the location of the western boundary of the treaty area. The decision is upheld on appeal, and an application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada is dismissed.
British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal) v Fraser Health AuthoritySupreme Court of Canada confirms the standard of proof that applies to occupational disease claims brought under the Workers Compensation Act.
Kazemi Estate v Islamic Republic of IranA case at the Supreme Court of Canada testing the constitutionality of Canada’s foreign sovereign immunity legislation.
Dudley v Canada (Attorney General)Supreme Court of BC refuses to strike out a mother’s claim that her daughter suffered a constitutionally cognizable infringement of her right to life, contrary to s. 7 of the Charter, when the RCMP failed to appropriately respond to a neighbour’s “shots fired” call to the police. A subsequent Coroner’s Inquest in 2018 resulted in…
Reference re s 293 of the Criminal Code of CanadaSupreme Court of BC considers the constitutionality of the polygamy offence in the Criminal Code.
Canada (Attorney General) v PHS Community Services SocietySupreme Court of Canada holds that the Minister of Health’s refusal to grant the Insite Supervised Injection Site an exemption from s. 56 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act violates s. 7 of the Charter. The Court orders the Minister to grant the exemption.
Lalli v British Columbia (Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal)Supreme Court of BC overturns the Tribunal’s decision denying benefits to a worker’s surviving spouse, following a fatality at work. The Court finds that factual conclusions underpinning the denial were “patently unreasonable”.
Cowburn v Workers Compensation Board of British ColumbiaA Workers Compensation Board policy limiting payment of benefits to workers with deteriorating conditions is quashed. As a result of this decision, the Board paid tens of millions of dollars in new benefits to disabled workers.