Harman Patil

Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v Khosa

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Docket No.  31952
Docket number  31,952
Ruling  Appeal allowed.
Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v Khosa
Full case name  Minister of Citizenship and Immigration v. Sukhvir Singh Khosa
Citations  2009 SCC 12, [2009] 1 SCR 339
Prior history  Judgment for Khosa in the Federal Court of Appeal.
Majority  Binnie J., joined by McLachlin C.J. and LeBel, Abella and Charron JJ.
People also search for  Dunsmuir v New Brunswick

Canada (Citizenship and Immigration) v. Khosa, 2009 SCC 12, is a leading Supreme Court of Canada decision in Canadian administrative law.



Khosa was a citizen of India who immigrated to Canada with his family in 1996 at the age of 14. He was found guilty in 2002 of criminal negligence causing death and sentenced to a conditional sentence of two years less a day. A removal order was issued for him to return to India.

Judicial History

Khosa appealed the order to the Immigration Appeal Division (IAD) of the Immigration and Refugee Board. The majority of the IAD denied Khosa "special relief" on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. On appeal, the Federal Court reviewed the assessment of the IAD and found it to be reasonable. That decision was then appealed to the Federal Court of Appeal which then found that the decision had not been reasonable when they denied relief and set the decision aside.

Opinion of the court

Binnie J. wrote for the majority, who found that s. 18.1 of the Federal Courts Act set out the threshold grounds which permit but do not require the court to grant relief when conducting judicial review. Binnie J. held that "whether or not the court should exercise its discretion in favour of the application will depend on the court's appreciation of the respective roles of the courts and the administration as well as the "circumstances in each case".

Applying the reasonableness standard from Dunsmuir v. New Brunswick, Binnie J. held that courts should be deferential to the IAD decisions and should not substitute its own findings. In the result, he found that the IAD decision was reasonable and restored its order.

Dissenting opinion

Fish J. dissented, agreeing with the Court of Appeal that the decision was unreasonable on account of the IAD's emphasis on the specific fact that Khosa denied having engaged in street-racing, and would have granted a re-hearing in the IAD, concluding, "I agree that decisions of the IAD are entitled to deference. In my respectful view, however, deference ends where unreasonableness begins."


Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v Khosa Wikipedia

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