Western Law

Chamberlain Speaks at Crown Liability Conference

On February 27, 2015, Professor Erika Chamberlain spoke at Osgoode Professional Development’s 11th Annual Crown Liability Conference. Chamberlain presented, “When Unlawfulness Becomes Tortious: Misfeasance in a Public Office.” The paper discussed the intersection of administrative unlawfulness and the misfeasance tort at both the substantive and procedural levels. In particular, it explored situations where a public officer had exercised discretion in a deliberately unlawful way, but would have made the same decision even if he or she had been acting lawfully. In these cases, has the plaintiff suffered the “material damage” that is necessary to establish misfeasance in a public office? Chamberlain examined this problem with reference to several cases, including the recent Federal Court decision in Apotex v Canada and the UK Supreme Court decision in Lumba v Secretary of State for the Home Department.