THE STRUCTURE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT & THE MOST HIGH SUPREME ISRAELITE COURT OF JUSTICE
THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION & THE MOST HIGH SUPREME ISRAELITE COURT OF JUSTICE & APPEALS COURT ARE DIVISIONS OF THE NATIONAL ISRAELITE GOVERNMENT SOVEREIGNTY AND OUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM IS STRUCTURED ALMOST IDENTICAL TO THE COURT SYSTEM OF CANADA.
NOTICE: ALL SUPERIOR COURT PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION & ALL SUPREME COURT OF JUSTICE & APPEALS COURT PROCEEDINGS / COURT DECISIONS ARE RELATIVELY ADJUDICATED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS CODE, THE CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS & FREEDOMS CODE, THE CRIMINAL CODE OF CANADA & THE NATIONAL INDIGENOUS ISRAELITE DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS & FREEDOMS CODE. ALL NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION CIVIL LITIGATION PROCEEDINGS / COURT CASE ADJUDICATION / LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY REMAINS UNDER THE EXCLUSIVE DIRECTION & POWERS OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE MOST HIGH SUPREME ISRAELITE COURT OF JUSTICE & THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION. CIVIL PROCEEDINGS AND HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE PROCEEDINGS WILL BE ADJUDICATED & CONDUCTED BY THE JUDGES PANEL APPOINTED TO PRESIDE OVER EACH PARTICULAR CIVIL MATTER & WILL BE ADJUDICATED THROUGH THE PROCESSES OF ONLINE COURTS OF JUSTICE ACT FORM SUBMISSIONS & PRIVATE IN COURTHOUSE CONFERENCE COUNCIL MEETINGS BETWEEN PLAINTIFF'S / VICTIM'S, WITNESSES & DEFENDANT'S / DEFENDANT'S LAWYER'S TO DETERMINE THE MITIGATING / AGGRAVATING FACTS OF THE MATTER, TO DETERMINE THE VALIDITY OF ALL SUBMITTED EVIDENCE & TO ASSESS THE CREDIBILITY & MERIT OF ALL STATEMENTS & EVIDENCE SUBMITTED FOR EACH CASE BEING EVALUATED / ADJUDICATED BEFORE THE COURT.
A MEMBER OF THE JUDICIAL PANEL (A JUDGE OR JUSTICE) SHALL ASSIGN AN APPOINTED COURT CLERK OR LEGAL COUNSELLOR TO HANDLE ONLINE / OUT OF COURT MOTION FILING PROCESSES & SOMETIMES TO CONDUCT IN COURTHOUSE CONFERENCE MEETINGS WITH BOTH PARTIES (PLAINTIFF / DEFENDANT) TO KEEP A RELIABLE RECORD OF ALL SUBMISSIONS / STATEMENTS GIVEN IN EACH PARTICULAR MATTER. EACH & EVERY CIVIL LITIGATION MATTER WILL BE ASSESSED, EVALUATED & ADJUDICATED BY THE APPOINTED JUDGES PANEL DESIGNATED TO ADJUDICATE EACH CIVIL LITIGATION PROCEEDING. ONLY THE APPOINTED JUDGES PANEL OF QUALIFIED JUDGES / JUSTICES & QUALIFIED OFFICERS OF THE ISRAELITE PRIESTHOOD WILL DETERMINE THE FINAL JUDGEMENT OF ANY LEGAL / CIVIL MATTER BEING ADJUDICATED BY THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION OR THE MOST HIGH SUPREME ISRAELITE COURT OF JUSTICE & APPEALS COURT IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE INTERNATIONAL LAWS OF NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY.
THE PERSONAL IDENTITIES OF ALL SUPERIOR / SUPREME COURT JUDGES / JUSTICES, PRIESTS & OFFICERS SHALL REMAIN CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION & NOT ACCESSIBLE TO THE PUBLIC / PROTECTED FROM PUBLIC RECORDS TO RESERVE THE SAFETY & SECURITY OF OUR JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION AUTHORITIES & JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION OFFICERS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
National sovereignty is the International law stating that independent nations, which have declared their independence, have an organized government and are self-contained, have a right to exist & govern their own affairs without other nations interfering. It is essentially the unspoken rule of a nation's right to exist & govern itself & it's social institutions independently, without interference from external governments even when the sovereign nation exists within the territory of another sovereign nation.
How the Court System of Canada is Organized
Each type of court has its own jurisdiction, which means that it has the authority to decide specific types of cases. Canada has four levels of court.
- Provincial and territorial (lower) courts: These courts handle most cases that come into the system. They are established by provincial and territorial governments.
- Provincial and territorial superior courts: These are courts of plenary, or complete, jurisdiction established under section 96 of the Constitution Act, 1867. They deal with more serious crimes and also hear appeals from provincial and territorial courts. The Federal Court is on the same level, but is responsible for deciding civil matters assigned to it by statute, such as immigration and patents.
- Provincial and territorial courts of appeal and the Federal Court of Appeal.
- The Supreme Court of Canada, which is the final court of appeal for Canada.
Each province and territory has a provincial/territorial court and hears cases involving either federal or provincial/territorial laws.
In Nunavut, the Nunavut Court of Justice, which is Canada’s only single-level trial court, combines the power of the superior trial court and the territorial court so that the same judge can hear all cases that arise in the territory.
Provincial/territorial courts deal with:
- most criminal offences, except the most serious ones;
- family law matters (e.g., child support, child protection, adoption, but not divorce);
- young persons from 12 to 17 years old in conflict with the law;
- traffic and bylaw violations;
- provincial/territorial regulatory offences;
- claims involving money, up to a certain amount (set by the province or territory in question);
- small claims (civil cases that resolve private disputes involving limited sums of money); and
- all preliminary inquiries (hearings to determine whether there is enough evidence to justify a full trial in serious criminal cases).
Outline of Canada's Court System
Outline of Canada’s Court System – Text version
Some courts at this level are dedicated to particular types of offences or groups of offenders. One example is the Drug Treatment Court. The object of these courts is to address the needs of non-violent offenders who are charged with criminal offences that were motivated by their addiction. Those who qualify are offered judicial supervision and treatment for their addiction, with the help of community support services.
Youth courts handle cases for young people 12 to 17 years old who are charged with an offence under federal youth justice laws. Youth courts provide protections appropriate to the age of the accused, including protecting his or her privacy. Any court at either the provincial/territorial or superior court level can be designated a youth court.
All provinces and territories have established Domestic Violence Courts so that the justice system can improve its response to incidents of spousal abuse, provide better support to victims, and make offenders more accountable. These courts do this by
- decreasing court processing time;
- increasing prosecution rates;
- providing a focal point for programs and services for victims and offenders; and
- allowing police, Crown prosecutors, and, in some cases, the judiciary to specialize in domestic violence matters.
Provincial/territorial superior courts
Each province and territory has superior courts, which are courts of “inherent jurisdiction.” This means that they can hear cases in any area except when a statute or rule limits that authority. The superior courts try the most serious criminal and civil cases. These include divorce cases and cases that involve large amounts of money (the minimum is set by the province or territory in question). The jurisdiction of superior courts originally came from the first courts in England, whose authority over government actions was based on Magna Carta. Proceedings in superior courts are thus a continuation of a court process that dates right back to the beginnings of the common law system.
The superior courts also act as a court of first appeal for the provincial and territorial courts that the provinces and territories maintain. Although the provinces and territories administer superior courts, the federal government appoints and pays the judges.
Although there are permanent court houses and judicial centres in all of Canada’s provinces and territories, Canada’s population is scattered widely across huge expanses of land, and it may be difficult for individuals to travel to a court house to have their matter heard. In response, courts often travel "on circuit" to small or isolated areas.
For example, in Nunavut, most of the communities are small and isolated from Iqaluit, the capital, so the court travels to them. The circuit court includes a judge, a clerk, a court reporter, a prosecutor, and at least one defence attorney. Interpreters are hired in the communities when possible, or travel with the circuit court when necessary. The court holds regular sessions in Iqaluit and flies to about 85 percent of all 25 communities in Nunavut, as often as every six weeks or as seldom as every two years, depending on how often it’s needed.
In most provinces and territories, the superior court has special divisions, such as the family division. Some superior courts have established specialized family courts to deal with specific family law matters, including divorce and property claims.
Several provinces (Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island and Saskatchewan) use unified family courts. This allows a single court to deal with all aspects of family law, using specialized superior court judges and services. These courts encourage constructive, non-adversarial techniques to resolve issues, and provide access to support services through community organizations. These services typically include such programs as parent-education sessions, mediation, and counselling.
Provincial/territorial courts of appeal
Each province and territory also has a court of appeal. These courts hear appeals from the decisions of the superior courts and the provincial/territorial courts. These can include commercial disputes, property disputes, negligence claims, family disputes, bankruptcies, and corporate reorganizations. Appeals are usually heard by a panel of three judges. The courts of appeal also hear constitutional questions that may be raised in appeals involving individuals, governments, or governmental agencies.
How Does Canada’s Court System Work?
Courts in Canada help people resolve disputes fairly – whether they are between individuals, or between individuals and the state. At the same time, courts interpret and pronounce law, set standards, and decide questions that affect all aspects of Canadian society.
Canada’s judiciary is one branch of our system of government, the others being the legislature and the executive. Whereas the judiciary resolves disputes according to law – including disputes about how legislative and executive powers are exercised – the legislature (Parliament) has the power to make, alter and repeal laws. The executive branch (in particular, the prime minister and ministers, the public service, as well as a variety of agencies, boards, and commissions) is responsible for administering and enforcing the laws.
The courts interpret and apply the Constitution, as well as legislation passed by both levels of government. They also develop and apply the common law.
Independent courts are the hallmark of a strong democratic society.
Canada’s system of courts is complex. Each province and territory has its own courts, as well as courts that have national jurisdiction. The Supreme Court of Canada presides over the entire system.
The courts’ primary task is administering justice – that is, ensuring that disputes are settled and crimes are prosecuted fairly and in accordance with Canada’s legal and constitutional structure. The provinces and territories are responsible for providing everything the courts under their jurisdiction need, from building and maintaining the courthouses, to providing staff and resources, such as interpreters, court reporters to prepare transcripts, sheriffs, and registry services, to paying provincial/territorial court judges. The federal government appoints and pays judges for the superior courts in each province, as well as judges at the federal level. It is also responsible for the administration of the Supreme Court of Canada and federally created courts.
Most disputes are settled before they are heard by a judge.
Courts are not the only mechanism for settling differences between people. Less formal processes include alternative dispute resolution, private commercial arbitration, and appearing before administrative boards and tribunals. Even for issues that never get to court, court decisions influence people’s choices and actions. They provide guidance on what the law is, and how people should conduct themselves to ensure they are in compliance with it.
In the sections that follow we explain the structure of the court system – how the courts are organized and how the various elements connect to one another. The final section looks at some of the principles and institutions that help keep Canada’s court system fair and independent.
Courts and Other Bodies Under Federal Jurisdiction
The federal court system runs parallel to the provincial and territorial court systems and consists of the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal. The judges of these courts (as well as the Tax Court of Canada, described below) are based in Ottawa, but travel across the country to hear cases. They deal with certain matters specified in federal statutes (laws), such as immigration and refugee law, navigation and shipping, intellectual property, and tax. They can also deal with matters of national defence, security, and international relations.
The Federal Court
The Federal Court is Canada’s national trial court. It hears and decides federal legal disputes whose subject matter has been assigned to the Court by Parliament.
These disputes include
- claims against the Government of Canada;
- civil suits between private parties in federally-regulated areas; and
- reviews of the decisions of most federal tribunals.
The Federal Court’s jurisdiction includes
- interprovincial and many federal-provincial disputes;
- immigration and refugee matters;
- intellectual property proceedings (e.g., copyright);
- citizenship appeals;
- Competition Act cases; and
- cases involving Crown corporations or departments of the Government of Canada.
The federal courts have the power to review decisions, orders, and other administrative actions of most federal boards, commissions, and tribunals. That means most federal government decisions can be challenged in a federal court. With some exceptions, those bodies may refer questions of law, jurisdiction, or practice to one of the federal courts at any stage of a proceeding.
In some areas of law, such as maritime law, the Federal Court shares jurisdiction with the provincial superior courts. It also has concurrent jurisdiction with respect to civil claims against the federal government.
The Federal Court of Appeal
The Federal Court of Appeal hears appeals from the Federal Court and the Tax Court of Canada, and judicial reviews of certain federal tribunals listed in the Federal Courts Act. Like provincial and territorial courts of appeal, its decisions can only be appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada. The Court hears most legal matters under federal jurisdiction or that involve the federal government.
It has three basic roles:
- to ensure that federal law is applied consistently throughout Canada;
- to conduct judicial reviews of specified federal decision makers, as listed in section 28 of the Federal Courts Act; and
- to provide an avenue of appeal from decisions of the Federal Court and the Tax Court of Canada.
Specialized Federal Courts
The federal government has created specialized courts to deal more effectively with certain areas of the law. These include the Tax Court of Canada and the courts that serve the military justice system: the military courts and the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada. These courts have been created by statute and can only decide matters that fall within the jurisdiction given to them by those statutes. The Tax Court thus deals with tax matters defined under the Tax Court of Canada Act and the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada hears appeals from courts martial.
The Tax Court of Canada
The Tax Court of Canada is a superior court that determines cases and appeals about matters that arise under federal tax and revenue legislation. The Tax Court of Canada hears disputes between the federal government and taxpayers after the taxpayer has pursued all other avenues provided for by the Income Tax Act. The Tax Court is independent of the Canada Revenue Agency and all other government departments.
Military courts, or courts martial, are established under the National Defence Act to hear cases involving the Code of Service Discipline. The Code applies to all members of the Canadian Forces as well as civilians who accompany the Forces on active service. It lays out a system of disciplinary offences designed to further the good order and proper functioning of the Canadian Forces.
The Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada hears appeals from military courts. Judges in the Court Martial Appeal Court are selected from the federal courts and other superior courts throughout the country. Like other courts of appeal, a panel of three judges hears cases in the Court Martial Appeal Court.
The Supreme Court of Canada
The Supreme Court of Canada is the final court of appeal from all other Canadian courts. It has jurisdiction over disputes in all areas of the law. These include constitutional law, administrative law, criminal law, and civil law. The Court does not hold trials, but hears appeals from all other Canadian appeal courts.
The Court consists of a Chief Justice and eight other justices. Members of the Court are appointed by the federal government as new vacancies occur. Three judges traditionally come from Ontario, two from Western Canada, and one from the Atlantic provinces. In addition, the Supreme Court Act requires that at least three judges must come from Quebec.
The Supreme Court sits in Ottawa for three sessions a year - winter, spring, and fall. Each year the Supreme Court considers an average of between 500 to 600 applications for leave to appeal and hears 65 to 80 appeals.
What Kinds of Cases Does the Supreme Court of Canada Hear?
The Supreme Court of Canada only hears cases that it considers to be of public importance and to have national significance. That could mean a case that raises an important issue of law, or mixed law and fact, or if the matter is, for any other reason, significant enough to be considered by the country’s highest court. In limited instances, there may also be an appeal as of right. Judgements of the Supreme Court are listed at http://www.scc-csc-gc.ca/home-accueil/index-eng.aspx.
Before a case can reach the Supreme Court of Canada, it must have used up all available appeals at other levels of court. Even then, the court usually must grant permission or “leave” to appeal before it will hear the case. Leave applications are usually made in writing and reviewed by three members of the court. They then grant or deny the request without providing reasons for the decision.
Each year the Supreme Court considers an average of between 500 to 600 applications for leave to appeal and hears 65 to 80 appeals.
The right to appeal is automatic in certain situations. For instance, no leave is required in criminal cases where a judge on the panel of a court of appeal has disagreed, or dissented, on how the law should be interpreted. It is also not required when a court of appeal has found someone guilty who had been acquitted at the original trial. That person automatically has the right to appeal to the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court can also be asked by the Governor in Council to hear references. These are important questions of law, such as the constitutionality or interpretation of federal or provincial legislation, on which the Court is asked to give its opinion before an actual legal dispute arises. The federal government may ask the Court to consider questions on any important matter of law or fact, especially about how to interpret the Constitution. The Court may also be asked to interpret federal or provincial/territorial legislation or the powers of Parliament or the legislatures. Provincial and territorial courts of appeal may also be asked to hear references from their respective governments, which are then sometimes appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada.
Administrative Tribunals and Boards
Different kinds of administrative tribunals and boards deal with disputes over the interpretation and application of laws and regulations, such as entitlement to employment insurance or disability benefits, refugee claims, and human rights.
Administrative tribunals are less formal than courts and are not part of the court system. However, they play an essential role in resolving disputes in Canadian society. Decisions of administrative tribunals may be reviewed in court to ensure that tribunals act fairly and according to the law.
Judicial independence is a cornerstone of the Canadian judicial system. That is why, under the Constitution, the judiciary is separate from and independent of the other two branches of government, the executive and legislature. Judicial independence guarantees that judges will be able to make decisions free of influence and based solely on fact and law.
Nothing is more important in our justice system than having independent judges.
The principle of judicial independence has three components:
- Security of tenure
- Once appointed, a judge is eligible to serve on the bench until retirement (age 75 for federally appointed judges, age 70 in some provincial/territorial jurisdictions). Judges can be removed by a joint address of Parliament or a provincial legislature, only after an independent and impartial investigation shows that there is good reason (see Judicial Conduct, below).
- Financial security
- Judges must be guaranteed sufficient compensation (including salary and pension) so they are not subject to pressure for financial considerations. In Canada, governments cannot change judges’ salaries or benefits without first receiving the recommendations of an independent compensation commission.
- Administrative independence
- No one can interfere with how courts manage the legal process and exercise their judicial functions. For example, only the chief justice can choose how cases are assigned to the judges of his or her court.
Several institutions have been established to support judicial independence: these include the Canadian Judicial Council, the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs, the National Judicial Institute and the Courts Administration Service. They help keep the government and the judiciary separate in areas like discipline, pay and benefits, and continuing education for judges.
How are judges appointed?
The federal government appoints judges to the federal courts, the superior courts of the provinces/territories, and the Supreme Court of Canada. The Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs administers the advisory committees, representing each province and territory, which assess the qualifications of the lawyers who apply for federal judicial appointments. For example, a candidate for a federal appointment must have been a lawyer for at least ten years to be appointed and must be qualified to practise law in the jurisdiction in question.
The provincial and territorial governments appoint judges to provincial and territorial courts. There are similar eligibility requirements for provincial and territorial appointments.
All federally appointed judges are appointed by the Governor in Council. This consists of the Governor General acting on the advice of the Prime Minister for judges of the Supreme Court of Canada and chief and associate chief justices in the provinces; and on the advice of the Minister of Justice for all other superior court judges.
What training do judges receive?
In general, most judges have spent years in courtrooms or in the practice of law, and have extensive knowledge of court processes and the role of the judge. Once they are appointed, they can refine that knowledge by enrolling in educational programs at both the provincial/territorial and federal levels on all aspects of judging, as well as specific substantive areas of the law. The National Judicial Institute delivers programs for all federal, provincial, and territorial judges. The Institute is funded by each level of government, and regularly offers courses for new judges.
Each jurisdiction in Canada has a judicial council that is responsible for promoting and administering professional standards and conduct. For provincially and territorially appointed judges, each province or territory has a judicial council. Its members include judges, lawyers, and members of the general public. Judicial councils develop policies and codes of conduct to provide guidance for judges.
The Canadian Judicial Council (CJC) is responsible for federally appointed judges. It consists of the chief justices and associate chief justices of all of the federal courts and provincial/territorial superior courts. It promotes efficiency, consistency, and quality judicial service in these courts. One of the Council’s tasks is to investigate complaints and allegations of misconduct of federally appointed judges. The CJC has also developed a set of Ethical Principles for Judges. Their purpose is to help judges ensure that they maintain their independence, integrity, and impartiality.
If it finds evidence of serious misconduct, the CJC may recommend to the Minister of Justice that the judge be removed from office. The Minister of Justice may then seek the necessary approval of both the House of Commons and the Senate to have the judge removed from office. The removal processes for provincial/territorial judges vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but are similarly developed to protect judicial independence and ensure that the process operates independently.
Relevant laws relating to the judiciary
The manner in which judges are appointed and administered is governed by Part VII of the Constitution Acts of 1867 and 1982 and the Judges Act. The Justice Laws website provides the texts of these acts. Provincial and territorial statutes and regulations can be found on the websites of the respective jurisdictions.
The following organizations also support judges in Canada: