Judicial discretion; Jurisdiction; Canada

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Under section 6 of the CJPTA, a court may hear a case for which it lacks territorial competence under the statute if it is satisfied that: (1) there is no other court outside the province in which the plaintiff can commence the proceeding; or (2) the commencement of the proceeding outside the province cannot reasonably be required. Courts in provinces that have not enacted the CJPTA have grafted a similar discretion on to the common law rules of jurisdiction. This article seeks to determine the intentions of the drafters of the CJPTA in providing for this power and to discuss how courts have attempted to define its scope so as not to subvert the basic approach to territorial competence taken in the CJPTA.

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