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Court Decisions

Court Cases: Nova Scotia
Under Nova Scotia's access to information laws (FOIPOP and MGA) there are two ways to challenge a decision of a public body or municipality.  Individuals can request a review by the OIPC or they can appeal directly to the Nova Scotia Supreme Court.  Individuals can also appeal to the Nova Scotia Supreme Court following an OIPC review if a public body or municipality refuses to accept all of the Information and Privacy Commissioner's recommendations.
In both cases, the law states that the Commissioner is not a party to the appeal.  Further, both types of hearing are "de novo" meaning that the parties can produce new evidence not provided to the OIPC during the review process. 
For the purpose of reference and research, below are assembled court decisions regarding freedom of information and protection of privacy.  Please contact us if you are aware of any other important decisions which should be posted.  Both the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society (NSBS) and the Canadian Legal Information Institute (CANLII) are good resources for searching case law.
The table below refers to the Nova Scotia Supreme Court (NSSC) and Nova Scotia Court of Appeal (NSCA).
R. v. Morris [1988] 85 NSR (2d) 200 NS Magistrate's Court1988s. 47 
McLaughlin v. Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge Commission, 1993, NSCA11/9/95s. 3(1)(j) Definition of a "public body"
McCormack v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General), 1993, NSSC06/30/93"mere recital of the words..."
Donham v. A.G. NS (June 1993) SN. No. 08092 (oral decision)06/1993duty to sever
For reference Re FOIPOP Act - Cape Breton Regional Hospital 1996, NSSC8/9/96s. 20, s.21 peer reviews
Atlantic Highways Corp v. Nova Scotia, 1997, NSSC02/28/97s. 21(a), (b), (c) confidential info, 3 part test
Dickie v. Nova Scotia (Dept of Health), 1998, NSSC 152603/03/98s. 20(1) personal information
Dickie v. Nova Scotia (Dept of Health), 1999, NSCA 723904/07/99s. 20(1) personal information
Western Regional Health Board, 1998, NSSC11/09/98s. 40(1) 30 days to appeal to court
Jobb et al v. Nova Scotia (Dept of Justice), 1999, NSSC 26893/11/99s. 16 solicitor-client privilege
Glasgow v. Nova Scotia (Minister of Community Services), 1999, NSSC 23286/24/99invasion of privacy, Social Services blanket disclosure form
Gatemaster Inc. v. Nova Scotia (Dept of Housing and Municipal Affairs, 2000, NSSC 143622/22/00s. 20(1), 4(2)(b), 21(2) obtaining names for mailing lists/databanks
Iannetti v. Cosmetology Association of Nova Scotia et al, 2000, NSSC 56144/10/00s. 3(1)(j) functional assessment test for what is a "public body"
Cyril House (Abacus Security Consultants), 2000, NSSC - Registry of Motor Vehicles4/20/00s. 20 (1) and 20 (4)(h) personal information
For reference: Attorney General of Nova Scotia v. Murray Ross MacDonald (in Chambers), 2000, NSSC.12/8/00Burden of Proof
MacDonald v. Nova Scotia (Human Rights Commission), 2001, NSSC12/09/01s. 32(3) and 41(1)
O’Connor v. Nova Scotia (Minister of the Priorities and Planning Secretariat), 2001, NSSC 61/12/01s. 13(1) Cabinet Confidences
O’Connor v. Nova Scotia (Minister of the Priorities and Planning Secretariat), 2001, NSCA 13210/2/01solicitor's files = privileged?
Keating v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General), 2001, NSSC 85.6/13/01 
For reference: Canada Life Mortgages Services v. Leeside Estates, 2001, NSSC 30 solicitor’s files = privileged?
French v. Dalhousie University, 2002, NSSC 2201/25/02s. 20 Personal information
French v. Dalhousie University, 2003, NSCA 161/23/03s. 20 Personal Information
Chesal v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General), 2003, NSSC 1001/23/03 
Chesal v. Attorney General of Nova Scotia, 2003, NSCA 12411/20/03s. 12(1)(2)
R. v. Fuller, 2003, NSSC 583/18/03s. 13(1), s. 14(1), s. 16
MacKenzie v. Kutcher, 2003, NSSC 764/3/03 
Shannex Health Care Management Inc. v. Attorney General of Nova Scotia, 2004, NSSC 543/23/04s. 21
Shannex Health Care Management Inc. v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General), 2005, NSCA 5203/30/05 
Fuller v. R. et al v. Sobeys, 2004, NSSC 864/27/04s. 21
Griffiths v. Nova Scotia (Dept of Education), 2005, NSSC 1182/22/05s. 20(4)(h)
Gaetz v. Attorney General of Nova Scotia, 2005, NSSC 2158/4/05solicitor/client privilege
MacDonald v. Attorney General of Nova Scotia, 2005, NSSC 2439/1/05 
Doctors Nova Scotia v. NS Dept of Health et al, 2005, NSSC 2448/30/05s. 20(4)(f) OVERTURNED
Doctors Nova Scotia v. Nova Scotia (Department of Health), 2006 NSCA 5905/12/06s. 20(4)(f)
Reid v. Halifax Regional School Board, 2006 NSSC 562/22/06s. 20
Reid v. Halifax Regional School Board, 2006 NSCA 353/16/06s.20
Griffiths v. NS (Education) 2007, NSSC 17812/11/06

ss. 20(3)(d) and 20(2)(f)

Cayer v. South West Shore Development Authority, 2007 NSSC 34609/18/07Rule 8
Cayer v. South West Shore Development Authority, 2008 NSSC 34911/25/08ss. 461(d), 477 and 481
Halifax Herald Ltd. v. WCB and CMA Exporters of NS, 2008 NSSC 36910/24/08ss. 20 and 21
A.B. v. Griffiths, 2009 NSCA 4802/18/09ss. 20(3(d) and 20(2)(f)
Halifax Regional Municipality v. NS Union of Public & Private Employees 2009 NSSC 28309/28/09s. 461(f)
Peach v. NS (Transportation), 2010 NSSC 9112/16/09s. 16
Cummings v. NS PPS, 2011 NSSC 3802/01/11ss. 4(2)(i) and 15(1)(f)
Cummings v. Belfast Mini-Mills Ltd., 2011 NSCA 5606/09/11s. 41
Coates v. Capital District Health Authority, 2012 NSSC 28307/24/12ss. 16 and 20
Coates v. Capital District Health Authority, 2012 NSCA 401/20/12ss. 16 and 20
Stevens v. NS Department of Labour and Workforce Development, 2012 NSSC 36710/22/12s. 20
Donham v. NS Community Services, 2012 NSSC 38411/12/12s. 7(1)
Sutherland v. NS Community Services, 2013 NSSC 101/04/13ss. 16 and 20
Fitzgerald v. Her Majesty the Queen (PPS), 2014 NSSC 18305/15/14s. 15
Nova Scotia Public Prosecution Services v. Fitzgerald Estate, 2015 NSCA 3804/22/15ss. 15(1)(f) and 20
Monkman v. Director of SIRT, 2015 NSSC 32511/13/15ss. 15(1)(a) and 15(1)(f)

Raymond v. Nova Scotia (Freedom of Information and Privacy Commissioner), 2017 NSSC 322 - This decision was appealed - see Raymond v. Nova Scotia (Information and Privacy Commissioner), 2019 NSCA 1 below.

12/13/17ss. 466, 487, 488, 462, 463, 465
Denike v. Dalhousie University, 2018 NSSC 11112/14/17ss. 14, 20, 21
Ronald Neufeld, Kathaleen Milan v. Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Kelly Cove Salmon Ltd.06/18/18s. 21  (Oral decision ordered full disclosure, written reasons pending)
Raymond v. Halifax Regional Municipality, 2018 NSSC 14906/20/19Preliminary motion to quash subpoenas - Granted
Raymond v. Nova Scotia (Information and Privacy Commissioner), 2019 NSCA 101/11/19ss. 466, 487, 488, 462, 463, 465
Raymond v. Halifax Regional Municipality NSCA01/16/19Leave to appeal decision to quash subpoenas - Denied without reasons
Shannex Incorporated v. Nova Scotia (Health and Wellness), 2019 NSSC 2401/18/19s. 21
Houston v. Nova Scotia (Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal), 2019 NSSC 11804/05/19s. 43(e)
Rudderham-Gaudet v. Nova Scotia (Health and Wellness), 2020 NSSC 2001/22/20s. 20
MacDonald v. Cape Breton Regional Municipality, 2020 NSSC 35012/03/20s. 463(2)(d)


Pending Cases

Review report # & Court file # 


Review Report 17-05 

Docket # 467138A (Halifax)

Development Records 

Severing ss. 474, 475, 476, 480, 481

Hearing scheduled for April 14-16, 2020

Review Report 18-06

Docket # 482489 (Kentville)

Deemed RefusalHearing scheduled for October 28, 2019

Review Report 18-07

Docket # 483038 (Halifax)

Salary funding information

Severing: s. 20(3)(f)

Motion for directions April 16, 2019

Review Report 18-11

Docket # 485067 (Halifax)

Management fee information

Severing: s. 17

March 26, 2020 - Hearing

Review Report 19-06

Docket #492928 (Halifax)

Offshore oil and gas information. Various issues.Hearing date unknown