Business Law

-A set of rules governing commercial relationships, including enforcement of rights

-defines general rules of commerce

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-protect property and ideas


How is Law useful in the business environment(because everything breaks)

-facilitates business planning

-provides mechanism that permits businesspeople to manage their participation in business activities and exposure to risk in business ventures

-provides mechanism to ensure losses are borne by those who are responsible for them


Business Law protects People and Property

-most familiar purpose of law is to provide protections

-Those who violate the “Criminal Code of Canada” such as breaking into another person’s house, assaulting someone, or committing a commercial fraud- are subject to criminal sanctions such as fines or imprisonment


Business Application of the Law

How does business law protect intangible property such as ideas and inventions


Personal information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA)
-Business are required to adequately protect their customers’ personal information or be subject to fines of up to $100,000


Business Law Facilitates Interactions

-Business law assist with many personal interactions such as providing rules concerning marriage or the disposal of property upon the owner’s death

-business law facilitates commercial activity by providing rules governing the marketplace.


Business Law Facilitates Commercial Activity

-Contract Law-Rules that make agreements binding and facilitates planning and enforcement expectations

-Breach of contract-Failure to comply with contractual promise


Business Law Provides Methods for Resolving Disputes (4 ways)


-process involved when one sues another using the formal court system (ultimate last resort)


-solutions to a legal dispute exist at various levels of formality

-first logical step is for parties to try to negotiated resolution between themselves

-if necessary, a formalized settlement agreement can be created.


-a process through which parties try to teach a resolution with a neutral person, mediator, third party


-a process through which a neutral person(or panel) who makes decisions

-arbitration is usually binding


Ch.2 Law and Business Ethics

Business Ethics-Moral principles and values that seek to determine right and wrong in the business world

From the perspective of reputation and profitability, is it enough for a commercial enterprise to simply comply with the law?


Using knowledge of the Law as a Business Asset

-An effective way to minimize negative business experience and enhance returns is implement a legal risk management plan.


Knowledge of Law as a Business Asset

-Owners and managers can protect their business by ensuring compliance with legal requirements

-Businesses can use contracts to plan from the future

-Laws can protect people and property

-Businesses can use laws to enforce legal rules against those who do business and interactions with the enterprise

-Identify the legal risk associated with a business and implement measures for managing those risks

-Identify and plan for risks before they occur rather than adopting the reactive mode

-Business ethnics are not always coextensive(corresponding to the same extent) with legal requirements but are increasingly important for running a successful business


The Canadian Legal System

Machinery that comprises and governs the legislative, executive

Legislative branch-Branch of government that creates statute laws

Statue Law-Formal written laws created or enacted by legislative branch of government

Jurisdiction-the power that a given level of government has to enact


The Canadian Constitution

Contained in several different documents

All Canadian laws must comply with the Canadian Constitution

Is difficult to change-a special amending formula must be met


Constitutional Conventions

Important rules that are not enforceable by a court of law but that practically determine how a given power is exercised by government

Example the office of prime minister does not formally exist in our constitutional documents


Constitution Act 1867

Full independence for Canada, bu allowing the country to change its Constitution without Britain’s approval, also birthed the Charter of Rights and Freedom

-Formerly BNA Act

-Sets up our Court

-Contains the “Division of Powers” Exclusive Federal Jurisdiction (s. 91) like


National Defense

Criminal Law

Postal Service


-Exclusive Provincial Jurisdiction(s.92)



Property and civil rights with the province

Administration of justice

Local matters

Incorporation of provincial corporation




-have no constitutionally recognized powers

-are usually delegated powers by the provinces in some areas like zoning, property tax, and licensing(license to have bars)


Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Charter)

Created in 1982, part of the constitution Act 1982

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: sets out right and freedoms that Canadians believe are necessary in a free and democratic society, this charter is 1 part of the Canadian Constitution.

Guarantees specific rights and freedoms a place in writing within the constitution and is enforceable by the judiciary


Fundamental Freedoms

2)Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms

  1. a) freedom of conscience and religion
  2. b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion, and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication
  3. c) freedom of peaceful assembly (right of people to come together and collectively express, promote, pursue, and defend their collective or shared ideas)
  4. d) freedom of association(individual’s right to join and leave group voluntarily)

Equality Rights

15 (1). Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability


Are there limits to our Charter Rights?

Section 33(the notwithstanding clause”)-allows government to “opt out” of some charter rights by enacting legislation “notwithstanding” that it violates the charter


Concurrent Jurisdiction

-Jurisdiction that is shared between levels of government, such as

Public health

The environment (agriculture)

Doctrine of Paramountcy-Provides that federal laws prevail when there are conflicting or inconsistent federal and provincial laws


Executive Branch of Government

Formal Executive-Branch of government responsible for the ceremonial features of government

Political Executive(cabinet)-Branch of government responsible for day to day operations, including formulating and executing government policy, as well as administering all departments of government


Ratify-to authorize or approve

Treaty-agreement between 2 or more states that is governed by international law

Bylaws-Laws made by municipal level of government


CabinetA body composed of all ministers heading government departments, as well as the prime minister or premier

Regulations-Rules created by political executive that have the force of law


Judiciary-Collective reference to judges

Judges-Those appointed by federal and provincial governments to adjudicate on a variety of disputes as well as to preside over criminal proceedings






Federal Court: Tax Court of Canada


System of Courts

-inferior Court-A court with limited financial jurisdiction whose judges are appointed by the provincial government

-small claims court-a court that deals with claims up to specified amount

-superior court-a court with unlimited financial jurisdiction whose judges are appointed by the federal government

-supreme court of Canada-final court for appeals in the country

-federal court of Canada-court that deals with some types of litigation involving the federal government




Royal prerogative-refers to historical rights and privileges of the crown, including right to conduct foreign affairs and to declare war

Common law-judge made law. Common law is created when judges make decisions. The decisions become precedents, and they are cumulatively referred to as common law.


How Common law works

-a lower court must follow a relevant precedent created by a higher court within the same jurisdiction

-not all precedents are of equal value-the higher the court that created the precedent, the more valued the decision is

-The supreme court of Canada-highest court in Canada-is entitled to decide a case in any way it sees fit


Law of Equity-another set of rules, known as rules of equity. Like common law, equity originated in England. Equity focuses on what would be fair given the specific circumstance of the case, as opposed to strict rules of common law might dictate. Example is the remedy of an injunction

-equity assists only those with clean hands.


We only look at contract, tort, property and company law



Classification of Law

Domestic vs International law

Can we sue china for false info about corona?


Substantive vs Procedural law

Substantive is the content, procedural is the how you do it-like a cop giving you a breathalyzer test


Public vs Private Law

Public Law-areas of law that relate to or regulate the relationship between persons and government at all levels, such as Criminal Law

Private Law-Areas of law that concern dealings between persons, such as Law of Contracts


Common vs Civil Law

Common Law(judge based) A system of law that includes judge made laws, used everywhere but Quebec

Civil Law(law based) A system of law in which judges look to the Civil Code for General principles to be applied to the case at hand. They are not bound by how other judges have interpreted the Code



Administrative Law and Business

-refers to rules created and applied by the various boards, agencies, commissions and tribunals

-functions of administrative bodies and officials often varies

-examples: Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)


Examples of Administrative Bodies and Officials Affecting Business?

If you plan to sell alcohol, you may interact with “liquor control board” or “commission”

If you plan to hire employees, you may interact with “workers’ compensation board”


The Canadian Legal System

-Constitution protects certain commercial rights and freedoms and establishes limits on governmental authorities

-Government’s Law-making powers under the Constitution Act, 1867, are divided between the federal and provincial levels of government

-There are numerous courts that may be involved in business-related law matters

-The judiciary has a role in assessing the constitutionality of legislation can also create “common law”

-There are numerous classifications of law

-Administrative law can affect business




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