Instructor(s): Karen Knop

For graduate students, the course number is LAW7008HF.

Note: This course satisfies the International/Comparative/Transnational course requirement.

Note: The Blackboard program will be used for this course. Students must self-enrol in Blackboard as soon as confirmed in the course in order to obtain course information.

Travel, migration, cross-border commerce, international business, internet communications and other transnational relationships multiplied by globalization present several challenging legal issues for Canadian courts. Private international law (“PRIL”), also known as “conflict of laws,” deals with these issues which arise in cases involving a “foreign” element. This course will consider the following problems:

• Which court or legal authority has the power to decide the dispute (jurisdiction and forum non conveniens)?
• Can foreign courts be precluded from getting involved in a dispute (anti-suit injunctions)?
• What law will likely be applied to resolve the dispute (choice of law issues in contract, tort, statutory, and equitable claims)?
• When will our courts recognize legislative or judicial determinations made outside Canada (common law and statutory rules for recognizing foreign judgments)?
• When will our courts provide assistance to foreign legal proceedings (worldwide Mareva injunctions and letters of request)?

At the confluence of constitutional and public international law (“PIL”), this course focuses on recent trends in the cases and seeks to draw an analytical framework therefrom. While this is a course on PRIL principles under Ontario law, we also consider the interplay between PRIL and PIL principles, and leading PRIL decisions from other common law jurisdictions. Students will reflect upon whether territoriality continues to play an important role in jurisdiction and choice of law questions. PRIL is an important foundation for students considering a litigation career.

3-hour open-book exam (100%).

At a Glance

Second Term



52 JD


M: 4:10 - 5:25
W: 4:10 - 5:25