JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE AND THE SUPREME COURT OF CANADA
AbstractThis article examines the recent landmark decision on judicial independence issued by the Supreme Court of Canada. The author outlines the essential features of the decision, and explains why this is one of the Court's most significant judgments on the subject. Although the issue of judicial remuneration in three provinces united the four separate appeals before the Court, the case was fundamentally about the separation of powers and the proper relationship of the judiciary to the political branches of government. This relationship between provincial courts and the governments that instituted them had become stressed in recent years, and that historical context is outlined in the article. The controversial aspects of the decision are identified, as well as areas of possible future conflict between provincial courts and governments. However, the author concludes that the principles provided by the Supreme Court will help the justice system deal with any future disputes in a civil and depoliticized manner.
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