Celebrating – and Using – the Pintea Decision

Celebrating – and Using – the Pintea Decision

This week’s episode of Jumping Off the Ivory Tower, our social justice podcast, features Colin Feasby of Osler Hoskin & Harcourt’s Calgary office. Colin was the appellant’s lead counsel in Pintea v Johns (2017 SCC 23). In Pintea, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that self-represented litigants should not be treated in exactly the same way as a trained lawyer, because of the differences between them in terms of knowledge and power. Colin’s reflections on Pintea and predictions for the future can be heard in “Insiders & Outsiders”, named for his opening pitch to the Supreme Court of Canada in April.  “This case is about insiders and outsiders. Everyone in this room is an insider – SRLs are outsiders. This case is about how we treat outsiders.”

In a summary written for the NSRLP website and designed to be used by SRLs in presenting their own cases, law student Kaila Scarrow writes, “The justices were concerned to ensure that the plaintiff was not unfairly penalized as a self-represented litigant and that sufficient effort had been made to ensure he understood and could participate in the court process.”

The Pintea summary is a response to requests from SRLs for a reliable and succinct summary that they could bring to their own hearings. Like all our resources it is free and downloadable. As more and more court decisions cite Pintea, we are tracking these in our SRL Case Law Database – (you can read about the SRL Case Law Database in our summer news report here). In 2018, we will issue a report with initial findings.

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Comments (2)

  • Judy Gayton

    A great interview about asking the court to treat people equally in consideration of their circumstances.

    The disability community owes deep gratitude to Mr. Feasby for recognizing the glaring injustice, seeing the greater social import and taking Mr. Pintea’s case on Pro Bono, even though it is not even his area of expertise.

    Thank you to everyone involved for making this historical forward movement possible.

    November 16, 2017 at 6:30 pm
  • Elizabeth

    Ongoing gratitude to those working on behalf of the civilian body, including SRLs and users of legal services, regarding true Access to Justice initiatives. The Pintea v Johns pro bono Supreme Court of Canada case is a direct move to immediately help an SRL in trouble due to systemic complexities and attitudes within the justice system. Thank you for hearing our voices and doing something (many things). Direction action = direct results!

    December 4, 2017 at 12:54 pm

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