A Cause of Action for Regulatory Negligence? The Regulatory Framework for Genetically Modified Crops in Canada and the Potential for Regulator Liability

23 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2012

See all articles by Thomas Moran

Thomas Moran

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Nola M Ries

University of Technology Sydney (UTS)

David Castle

University of Ottawa

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

This paper considers whether, under Canadian law, a government regulatory agency could be found liable for “negligent regulation” of genetically modified (GM) crops. The paper begins with an overview of the Canadian framework for GM crop regulation and notes criticisms about the adequacy of this framework. The state of Canadian law regarding regulatory liability is then analysed. The authors conclude that litigants who wish to assert a claim of regulatory negligence face significant legal barriers, particularly since review of GM crop applications involves weighing complex scientific data and determining tolerable levels of risk, matters that would likely be non-justiciable in a negligence claim. Current jurisprudence, however, leaves open some unresolved bases of liability. The paper closes with a brief overview of recommendations to improve the Canadian regulatory framework for GM crops, focusing particularly on enhancing transparency in the decision-making process.

Suggested Citation

Moran, Thomas and Ries, Nola M and Castle, David, A Cause of Action for Regulatory Negligence? The Regulatory Framework for Genetically Modified Crops in Canada and the Potential for Regulator Liability (2009). University of Ottawa Law & Technology Journal, Vol. 6, No. 1-2, 2009, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2034554

Thomas Moran

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Nola M Ries (Contact Author)

University of Technology Sydney (UTS) ( email )

15 Broadway, Ultimo
PO Box 123
Sydney, NSW 2007
Australia

David Castle

University of Ottawa ( email )

2292 Edwin Crescent
Ottawa, Ontario K2C 1H7
Canada

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