Parliamentary Immunity in Canada

This book offers an extensive examination of the law concerning the immunity – also known as privilege – of federal and provincial Members of Parliament and senators with respect to their political activities and comments in the House of Commons and the Senate.
Publication Language: English
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ISBN/ISSN: 9780433491606

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"An informative volume that will inform its readers of the rules, laws and practices that make our parliamentary system function so well for the benefit of all of our citizens."
– From the Foreword by The Honourable Peter Milliken P.C., OC, F.R.S.C., Former Speaker, House of Commons, 2001-2011


As respected lawyer and author, Joseph Maingot, states in the Introduction to this new volume, Parliamentary Immunity in Canada, "the principal subject of this text will be privileges, immunities, and powers of the Houses of Parliament and their Members, particularly those of the House of Commons … [as well as those] held and enjoyed by the Senate and its Members."

In fact, this is the only book that covers the subject of parliamentary immunity in Canada, and it has now been brought fully up-to-date by the expert who has been writing about this topic for the past 35 years.

Comprehensive coverage
Parliamentary Immunity in Canada offers an extensive examination of the law concerning the immunity – also known as privilege – of federal and provincial Members of Parliament and senators with respect to their political activities and comments in the House of Commons and the Senate.

This unique treatise covers virtually every aspect of immunity, from privilege of freedom of speech and privilege of freedom from arrest, to the publication of parliamentary papers, proceedings and procedure in the House of Commons, and the jurisdiction of the courts over the Senate and House of Commons. The book also features a special chapter on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as it relates to and intersects with parliamentary privilege.

In addition, Parliamentary Immunity in Canada includes insightful discussion about the most recent relevant jurisprudence, including the precedent-setting Supreme Court of Canada decision in Canada (House of Commons) v. Vaid and the significant Speaker's rulings made in the House of Commons since the publication of the author's previous work in this area, Parliamentary Privilege in Canada, 2nd Edition in 1997.

Handy reference
This resource provides an in-depth analysis of parliamentary immunity and its related practices and procedures, and would be particularly valuable to:

  • Government lawyers and litigators who are involved with litigation against any form of provincial or federal government
  • Civil litigators who are involved with litigation against the legislatures (or members thereof) for any provincial or federal government
  • Judges who must adjudicate cases involving legislatures (or members thereof) for any provincial or federal government
  • Courthouse, law association, law school and university libraries

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Table of contents

Foreword by the Hon. Peter Milliken
Chapter 1 – Introduction
Chapter 2 – Parliamentary privilege: A general view
Chapter 3 – Privilege of freedom of speech
Chapter 4 – Publication of parliamentary papers
Chapter 5 – Proceedings in Parliament
Chapter 6 – Protection afforded apart from parliamentary privilege
Chapter 7 – Proceedings in Parliament, freedom of speech, the Official Secrets Act, the criminal law
Chapter 8 – The use of parliamentary matters as evidence in court
Chapter 9 – Privilege of freedom from arrest and related privileges
Chapter 10 – Parliament Hill and the precincts of the Houses of Parliament
Chapter 11 – The corporate rights, privileges and powers of the Senate and the House of Commons
Chapter 12 – Procedure in the House of Commons relating to breaches of privilege and contempt
Chapter 13 – The courts: Jurisdiction over the Senate and House of Commons: Parliamentary privilege
Chapter 14 – The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and parliamentary privilege
Annex

Appendices
Appendix A – The Bill of Rights, 1689
Appendix B – The Parliamentary Papers Act, 1840
Appendix C – Constitution Act, 1867 (excerpts)
Appendix D – Constitution Act, 1982 (excerpts)
Appendix E – Parliament of Canada Act (excerpts)

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