The Supreme Court of Canada will hear four appeals (three civil) this week. It’s the last week it will sit this year. The most highly publicized appeal will be that of New Brunswicker Gerard Comeau, whose successful bid to have charges brought against him under that province’s Liquor Control Act, for exceeding limits of alcohol brought over provincial borders, was appealed by the Crown and will be heard over two days. The remaining two civil cases involve trust obligations in the construction sector, and contract law interpretation under the Civil Code of Quebec.
December 4 – British Columbia – West Fraser Mills v. Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal
Civil law, workers’ compensation: A tree faller was fatally struck by a rotting tree while working within the area of a forest licence held by West Fraser Mills Ltd.
West Fraser was the owner of the workplace, as defined by the Workers Compensation Act.
The faller’s employer worked for an independent contractor. The Workers’ Compensation Board conducted an investigation and imposed an administrative penalty on West Fraser. On appeal to the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal, West Fraser argued that s. 26.2 of B.C.’s Occupational Health and Safety Regulation is ultra vires, and that an administrative penalty can only be levied against a person who has, in the course of acting as an employer, committed a violation.
Read the British Columbia appellate court decision here.