Some Professional Ideas On Essential Aspects For Dangerous Goods

The Court of Appealheld that while an employer can assert litigation and\u002for legalprivilege over an accident investigation or certain parts of it,employers cannot "throw a blanket over all materials"created or collected during the accident investigation and claimthat all such materials are privileged. On April 20, 2014, an employee of Suncor was involved in a fatalworkplace accident at Suncor's facility near Fort McMurray,Alberta. Alberta Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) officersissued a stop-work order that day. Immediately after the workplaceaccident, anticipating litigation, Suncor began an internalinvestigation and threw a privilege blanket over all informationpertinent to its investigation. From May 2014 onward, OHS issued various demands for the releaseof information under Alberta's Occupational Health and SafetyAct (OHSA). On November 14, 2014, in compliance with section 18 ofOHSA, Suncor provided OHS with a report of its investigation.Suncor also produced materials that pre-dated or coincided with theworkplace accident but asserted solicitor-client privilegeand\u002for litigation privilege over materials created orcollected in the course of its internal investigation after theaccident. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Alberta (Alberta) filed anoriginating application on February 26, 2016, seeking an order thatSuncor provide the refused materials and allow OHS to interviewSuncor's internal investigators, or at least provide furtherparticulars about the claims of privilege. Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta Decision The Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta considered whetherSuncor was entitled to claim privilege over the informationcollected during its internal investigation and whether thedocuments and other records created or collected duringSuncor's internal investigation were privileged. The chambersjudge noted that while Suncor had a statutory obligation under theOHSA to conduct an investigation and prepare a report on theaccident, that obligation did not foreclose or precludeSuncor's entitlement to litigation privilege. The chambersjudge found that as Suncor's internal investigation was carriedout in anticipation of litigation, the information and documentscreated and\u002for collected during the internal investigationwere done so with the dominant purpose that they would assist inthe contemplated litigation, and therefore the information anddocuments were covered by litigation privilege. Alberta appealedthe chambers judge's decision to the Court of Appeal.

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