Supreme Court


Aviation and aeronautics

Practice and procedure in mental incompetency proceedings

Total denial of public interest standing inconsistent with reasonable interpretation of legislative scheme

Complainant filed complaint with Canadian Transportation Agency alleging airline’s practices regarding transportation of obese persons were discriminatory. Agency applied test for public interest standing that had been developed in civil courts and dismissed complaint on basis complainant lacked standing. Federal Court of Appeal allowed complainant’s appeal, finding Agency fettered its discretion. Matter was returned to Agency to determine, other than on basis of standing, whether to hear complaint. Airline appealed. Appeal allowed in part. Agency unreasonably fettered its discretion. Agency’s application of test was inconsistent with rationale underlying public interest standing. Applying standing tests as Agency did would preclude any public interest group from ever having standing before Agency regardless of content of complaint. Total denial of public interest standing was inconsistent with reasonable interpretation of legislative scheme. Court of Appeal should not have held that standing rules could not be considered by Agency on reconsideration. Matter sent back to Agency for reconsideration in its entirety.

Delta Air Lines Inc. v. Lukács (2018), 2018 CarswellNat 50, 2018 CarswellNat 51, 2018 SCC 2, 2018 CSC 2, McLachlin C.J.C., Abella J., Moldaver J., Karakatsanis J., Wagner J., Gascon J., Côté J., Brown J., and Rowe J. (S.C.C.); reversed (2016), 2016 CarswellNat 4268, 2016 CarswellNat 9946, 2016 FCA 220, 2016 CAF 220, Wyman W. Webb J.A., A.F. Scott J.A., and Yves de Montigny J.A. (F.C.A.).

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