Canadian Law Course Descriptions

Global Professional Master of Laws in Canadian Law in a Global Context

*Please note that not all courses will necessarily be available every year.

LAW4060H Advanced Criminal Law: Financial Crime in Global Context - Andrew Matheson and Tyler Hodgson

In Canada and around the globe, financial crime is increasingly pervasive, complex and cross-border in nature. In response, companies are aiming to improve their policies, procedures and internal investigations to meet global as well as domestic standards. Authorities are more frequently cooperating across borders and asserting jurisdiction with extraterritorial effect. While extraterritorial jurisdiction over offences such as war crimes and human trafficking is clear, the authority to investigate and prosecute financial crimes with extraterritorial connections  can be more complex and controversial.

Thiscoursebuilds on GPLLM Canadian Criminal Law, with a focus on financial crimes how they are defined, detected, investigated, and prosecuted, including key evidentiary and constitutional issues that arise. In addition, thecourseemphasizes global context, from the standpoint of corporate compliance and investigations, as well as cooperation between law enforcement agencies and initiatives by international organizations, such as the OECD and the World Bank. Important differences between the laws of Canada and of other jurisdictions will be examined, such as differences in the protection against self-incrimination and double jeopardy in Canada and in the United States.  

Prior knowledge of financial crime and/or international enforcement is not a prerequisite. The student is also not expected to be overly familiar with Canadian or American constitutional norms.

LAW4024H Applied Legal Research and Writing - Daniella Murynka

This course is about three things — how to get the information you need to answer legal questions (legal research), how to think about that information (legal analysis), and how to communicate it to others (legal writing).

LAW4023H Business Organizations - Mark Surchin and Matt Prager

This course examines the fundamental principles as well as the rules governing business organizations. Students will be introduced to the three most common forms of organization through which business activity is carried on, including proprietorships, partnerships and corporations of various kinds, and the contracts between the forms of companies, partnerships and proprietorships. The purpose of the course is to provide students with an understanding of the basic principles of corporate law in light of the current statutory regimes and evolving case law. Particular emphasis will be placed on the duties and responsibilities of directors and officers, and their relationship to the shareholders. 

LAW4007H Canadian Administrative Law - David Goodis, Prof. Richard Stacey 

Administrative law is the body of law regulating the ways in which government operates. It is about the rules and limits that apply to not only the operations of the Crown, Cabinets, Ministers, government departments, and municipal corporations but also the various administrative tribunals and agencies deployed by governments for the carrying out of governmental functions of all kinds. It is concerned with the procedures by which all these various instruments of government operate, the jurisdictional and substantive limits on their mandates, and the remedial structures that exist to ensure that decision-makers of various kinds act in accordance with the rule of law. As well, throughout the course, students are encouraged to reflect upon the divide between public law and private law and, in particular, the circumstances under which governmental authorities of various kinds or in various capacities are subject not to the special regime of administrative law principles and remedies but to the private law rules of contract, tort, restitution and the like.        

LAW4008H Canadian Constitutional Law - Candice Telfer & Justice Michael Doi, Prof. Nathalie Des Rosiers     

This course addresses the nature and sources of the Constitution, the distribution of legislative powers, principles of interpretation, specific powers (including property and civil rights, trade and commerce, peace, order and good government, and criminal law), and the rights and freedoms outlined in the Canadian Constitution, including freedom of expression, freedom of conscience and religion, life, liberty and security of the person, equality rights, language rights, and Aboriginal rights. 

LAW4009H Canadian Criminal Law - Prof. Malcolm Thorburn and Justice Rita Maxwell

This course will examine essential aspects of criminal law, including sources and types of offences, elements of offences and particular issues such as intention, knowledge, consent, causation, and omissions. Other topics to be addressed will include extensions of criminal liability such as aiding and abetting, counselling, attempts and corporate liability, and defences such as mental disorder, intoxication, necessity, duress, provocation and entrapment. Finally, the course will consider issues relating to the criminal justice process, sentencing and appeals.

LAW4022H Contract Law - Prof. Jennifer Nadler

This course examines the enforcement of promises and agreements. The matters considered include the requirements of enforceability, remedies for breach, the effect of contracts on third parties, the effect of writing, and excuses for non-performance. These excuses include unfairness, unexpected circumstances, and public policy.  

LAW4067H Employment Law - Gregory Ko

This course will examine the statutory and common law principles governing the relationships between individual employees and their employers in Canada. Labour law, while not a focus of the course, will be touched upon as part of the overall understanding of employment regimes. The course will also look at the intersection of employment law with human rights legislation, and will explore topical issues affecting Canadian employees. 

LAW4051H Evidence Law - Prof. Malcolm Thorburn

This course provides an introduction to the basic principles of the law of evidence. Common law and statutory rules of evidence are analyzed in light of the adversary system, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and other social values. While both civil and criminal evidence issues are considered, the focus is on the admissibility of evidence in criminal cases. Topics to be covered may include: relevancy, testimonial competence, the rule against hearsay, opinion evidence, character evidence, privilege and related matters, confessions, and illegally obtained evidence.

LAW4010H Foundations of Canadian Law (required) - Patrick Hartford and Tyler Wentzell

The purpose of this course is to provide students with an introduction to and overview of Canada's legal system and the role of law in Canadian society.  Topics considered will include the overarching legal framework, sources of legal authority, separation of powers, the role of international law, the nature and function of common law reasoning and judicial review, and selected issues relating to law and Aboriginal peoples. 

LAW4064H Negotiation - TBD (not offered in 2023-2024)

Although most of us negotiate countless times every day, in both personal and work-related contexts, few of us ever sit back to analyze whether we negotiate well and whether we can improve our negotiation technique. Negotiation is a skill that can be learned and improved by practising and experimenting.

This will be a course in doing. Students will negotiate a number of hypothetical fact scenarios, and will analyze the results and techniques used. We will also have a number of classroom "exercises" designed to help improve negotiating skills. By the end of the course, we hope that students will be able to go into any negotiation confident that they have learned techniques that will consistently produce a "good" result. The theories taught in the course will be based on those in the book Getting To Yes by Roger Fisher, William Ury and Bruce Patton (3rd edition). There will not be a lot of required outside reading.

LAW4017H Professional Responsibility - Rebecca Durcan 

This course is designed to cover the fundamental concepts of professional responsibility of Canadian lawyers. 

The regulation of lawyers in Canada is a matter primarily within the jurisdiction of the provinces. Because the laws, rules, and regulations that govern lawyers, including professional codes of conduct, are currently different for each province and territory, this course does not purport to cover (and students are not expected to read) each of these different regulatory regimes. Rather, for purposes of this course, the Federation of Law Societies of Canada’s (“FLSC”) Model Code of Professional Conduct (the “Model Code”) will be referred to as the basic and primary guide for professional conduct in Canada. After successfully completing this course, each student should be familiar with the regulatory model of licensure for lawyers, the Model Code and the expectations that legal regulators have of its licensees. To assist with building this familiarity after the course is completed, students may wish to consult the FLSC’s Interactive Model Code.

LAW4020H Property Law - Prof. Larissa Katz

This course is designed to teach the fundamental principles of the law affecting real property as applied in the common law jurisdictions in Canada. The course will introduce students to the concepts that lawyers use in dealing with competing interests in land, chattels and other forms of wealth. The concept of "property" is examined as are the concepts of possession and ownership, and the consequences flowing from these concepts. Adverse possession, finders, bailment, gift, estates, easements, appropriation of personality, and intellectual property are among the other topics which will be covered. 

LAW4065H The Emergence of LegalTech - Patrick Hartford

Technology is rapidly changing the practice of law. This course examines the emerging field of LegalTech and focuses on the questions that new technologies raise for the delivery and regulation of legal service. The course will introduce students to the fundamentals of software development and deployment. Students will learn how different aspects of the legal profession are changing and adapting to technological change. Lastly, students will consider the role that technology might play in solving the current access to justice crisis. 

LAW4021H Tort Law - Prof. Abdi Aidid

The law of torts deals with the sorts of disputes which arise when one person has caused injury or property loss to another. Different theoretical perspectives on tort law will be analyzed in the course and some consideration given to alternative methods of compensating for personal injuries. 

LAW4066H Trial Advocacy - Sam Rogers and Eric Pellegrino 

Please note that this course has a maximum enrollment of 40 students.

This course is designed to help students acquire basic skills in trial advocacy. Each class will include lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on exercises intended to allow participants to put the skills into practice. Topics covered will include opening and closing statements, examinations-in-chief, cross-examinations, introduction of documentary, real and demonstrative evidence, objections, and motions.