Sometimes you can find the current law on a legal issue in common law. Common law is judge-made law.  Common law addresses situations where legislation does not deal with a certain legal issue or is unclear and requires interpretation. Common law also plays a key part in upholding our fundamental rights and freedoms under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

In making decisions, judges must review precedents (related decisions made by earlier judges), follow the ones made by earlier judges in higher courts and apply the common law to a situation before them.

It can be difficult for individuals without legal training to find, interpret, and apply common law to their situations – so they should get legal advice if their situation involves common law.

Last modified: Monday, 12 December 2022, 4:58 PM