Judicial review not the regular means to challenge PIPEDA investigation reports

29 Jan

On January 15th the Federal Court dismissed two judicial review applications brought by a self represented applicant who took issue with two OPC investigation findings made under under PIPEDA. The Court held that an application under section 14 of PIPEDA, which invites a de novo hearing, was an adequate alternative remedy to judicial review:

In conclusion, I find that there is an adequate alternative remedy provided by section 14 of the PIPEDA that would have been the appropriate recourse to deal with all matters raised concerning the complaint, the OPC reports and the investigation that followed. When comparing the recourse provided by section 14 of the PIPEDA with the possibilities offered by judicial review, which is discretionary and extraordinary in nature and limited to the review of the reports and the documentation contained in the certified record, I find that the former is the appropriate recourse as the intent of the legislator to this effect is clear. I will not therefore exercise my discretion to judicially review the reports of the Privacy Commissioner, and I will dismiss both applications for judicial review.

In making this finding the Court suggested that a judicial review application to allege bias or that the OPC committed some other procedural injustice might be amenable to judicial review.

Kniss v Canada (Privacy Commissioner), 2013 FCC 31.

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