A SAMPLE OF OUR DIVERSE LEGAL EXPERIENCE
V.T. v. D.T.
Gillian Hnatiw & Co represented the plaintiffs in a successful motion for summary judgment relating to childhood sexual abuse. The decision is an important step forward in recognizing the inherent difficulties associated with litigating sexual assault and abuse cases and serves as a precedent for future costs awards that acknowledge a trauma-informed approach to assisting survivors may require plaintiff-side lawyers to invest more time in preparation.
Gillian Hnatiw acted as Commission Counsel for Nova Scotia’s Mass Casualty Commission. The Commission was an independent public inquiry created to examine the April 18-19, 2020 mass casualty in Nova Scotia and to provide meaningful recommendations to help protect Canadians in the future.
R. v. JARVIS
Gillian Hnatiw acted for the intervener, the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF), on an appeal concerning the criminal offense of voyeurism and the question of whether teenage girls have a reasonable expectation of privacy in respect of their bodies while attending high school.
DOUCET v. THE ROYAL WINNIPEG BALLET
Gillian Hnatiw represented the plaintiffs in this successful motion to certify a class action against the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School and a former teacher, Bruce Monk. Monk is alleged to have coerced numerous students at the venerable school into posing nude for him over almost three decades, and to subsequently selling the images on-line. The case has the potential to expand the law of image-based sexual abuse in Canada.
S.S. v. KANTOR
Gillian Hnatiw represented a psychiatrist in this successful appeal restoring the validity of a Community Treatment Order under the Mental Health Act. The Court of Appeal accepted Ms. Hnatiw’s arguments concerning the correct interpretation of the complex statutory scheme and clarified the process for issuing CTOs in Ontario.
MITCHELL v. BANIK
Gillian Hnatiw successfully represented a psychiatrist, Dr. Banik, in response to this appeal from a decision of the Consent and Capacity Board. Ms. Hnatiw convinced the court that Dr. Banik reasonably applied the proper legal test to the facts and succeeded in having his findings of incapacity affirmed.
BONELLO v. GORES LANDING MARINA (1986) LIMITED
A freak accident during a recreational game of tug-of-war resulted in the amputation of the plaintiff’s right hand. The owners of the marina convinced a lower court that there was no merit to the plaintiff’s claim against it and secured an order for summary judgment dismissing the plaintiff’s claim. Gillian Hnatiw argued the successful appeal from this order, which restored the plaintiff’s claim and pursuit for compensation.
Gillian Hnatiw acted for a group of physicians at a Coroner’s Inquest into the epilepsy related death of an inmate at Toronto East Detention Centre.
Coroner’s Inquest into the police shooting death of mentally ill black man in Brampton, which delved into issues of racial profiling and unconscious bias. Gillian Hnatiw acted as counsel to a physician who provided psychiatric care to the deceased.
Gillian Hnatiw acted for the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto in a Coroner’s inquest into the death of a young person that examined Ontario’s child welfare system.
BOWDEN INSTITUTION v. KHADR
Gillian Hnatiw acted as counsel to the intervener, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, in an appeal concerning the government decision to treat Mr. Khadr’s foreign sentence as an adult rather than a youth sentence and place him in a federal penitentiary. The appeal was dismissed by the Supreme Court in less than 30 minutes for reasons consistent with the position advanced by the CCLA.
Gillian Hnatiw represented a group of physicians at a Coroner’s Inquest into the death of mentally ill 19-year-old in federal custody.
MILNE v. BETTS
Gillian Hnatiw represented the plaintiffs in this successful action for childhood sexual abuse against their maternal uncle. The court awarded the plaintiff damages for pain and suffering, economic loss, and past and future therapy, as well as punitive damages and legal costs on a substantial indemnity basis.
STEVENS v. CANADA (ATTORNEY GENERAL)
Gillian Hnatiw successfully represented a former Cabinet Minister in an action to set aside the report from a Public Inquiry. Mid-trial, she was also successful in resisting a motion to quash the summons served on the Federal Ethics Commissioner. Stevens is an important decision on the principles of procedural fairness and natural justice.
KHAN v. TULAKE
Gillian Hnatiw brought a successful application to stay civil proceedings before the Workplace Safety Insurance and Appeals Tribunal. Her novel arguments established a new type of statutory defense for medical residents.