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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/31403

Title: Access to Justice and the Institutional Limits of Independent Courts
Authors: Rankin, Micah
Advisor: Dyzenhaus, David
Department: Law
Keywords: judicial independence
access to justice
Issue Date: 19-Dec-2011
Abstract: Canadian citizens’ inability to access courts has been a subject of controversy for decades. Despite widespread evidence that Canada’s legal aid system is faltering, governments continue to be unwilling to commit the resources necessary to remedy the problem. In this thesis, the author argues that people’s inability to access courts and obtain legal representation not only has implications for their rights and interests, but may also undermine judicial independence. Judicial independence, the author claims, is best understood as a variable bundle of rights, guarantees and powers conferred on courts and judges that preserves and enhances their abilities to adjudicate impartially, maintain a constitutional distribution of powers and uphold the rule of law. Since people’s inability to access courts can impair the judiciary’s ability to preserve these values, judicial independence is undermined. The author claims that it is possible to correct problems of inaccessibility by appointing state-funded counsel in appropriate circumstances.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/31403
Appears in Collections:Master

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