The Plan

Our Goals:

1. To have the Supreme Court rule that our current voting system contravenes the Charter

2. To have the Supreme Court order the government to adopt a voting system that complies with the Charter

Any charter challenge has four main steps:

1. Filing a notice of application

2. The first hearing

3. The first appeal

4. A final appeal to the Supreme Court


Our work to date, and the plan going forward

The estimated costs for each stage of the work are noted below, along with a brief description of what happens at each phase. In addition to the legal fees, the noted costs also include the estimated costs of managing and overseeing the work on the case, as well as continued communication with donors, prospective donors and the media. As we reach each stage, we'll update our estimates to reflect more accurate projections of the costs involved.

ask our supporters to contribute to support the next steps of the case.

Retaining Counsel, and Initiating a Public Awareness Campaign - $45,000 (2017-2018)

With the support of roughly 500 donors, who collectively contributed roughly $45,000, we were able to retain a lawyer, and build a public awareness and fundraising campaign for the work to follow. Nicolas Rouleau is an experienced constitutional lawyer who has fought and won cases before the Supreme Court. In the fall of 2018, he delivered a strategic plan offering his guidance on how our case can best be argued.

Preparing the Notice of Application & Expert Evidence for Filing - $70,000  (Fall 2019)

The notice of application will be filed in a provincial court. Once we've filed the notice of application, we'll recruit expert witnesses, and work with them to assemble evidence.

STATUS UPDATE: In early August 2019, we successfully raised just over our target of $70,000, and are now proceeding with our plans enough funds to file a notice of application in the Fall of 2019. 

First Hearing - $95,000 (Date TBD)

The case will be argued in a provincial court. The costs include the time spent in preparing for, and conducting cross-examinations of witnesses from both sides of the case, responding to government evidence, addressing government motions, preparing the factum, and otherwise attending to issues arising necessary to make a strong case.

First Appeal - $34,000 (Date TBD)

After the initial hearing, the costs of the case will depend on what the courts decide. If we win, government lawyers will almost certainly move to appeal that ruling. If we lose, our lawyers will move to appeal that ruling. Either way, we need to be prepared to fight for voters' rights at the appeals court.

Application for Leave to Supreme Court - $17,000 (Date TBD)

The final appeal to the Supreme Court is dependent on the Supreme Court's willingness to hear the case. An application for leave will be filed with the Supreme Court.

Final Appeal to Supreme Court -  $70,000 (Date TBD)

If the case is granted leave, it will be heard at the Supreme Court, and the decision of the Supreme Court will be final.


Donate to support the Charter Challenge 

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Current Status:

- In early August of 2019, we raised enough support ($70,000) to cover the costs of preparing a court application and securing expert testimony for our case.

- The case is being filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on October 9th, 2019

How you can help

The main way you can help is to support the case financially. We need to raise another $150,000 to cover the costs associated with arguing the case at two levels of provincial court, and to file an application for leave with the Supreme Court of Canada. You can make a tax-deductible donation here.

What to expect

- Once filed, the case will be heard in a provincial court.

- Following an initial decision, there will be an appeal heard in another court. If the initial decision is in our favour, the Government of Canada will likely appeal it. If the decision is not in our favour, we will appeal it.

- Finally, the case may be heard by the Supreme Court. If the decision of the appeal court is in our favour, we suspect the Government will request leave from the Supreme Court. If the decision of the appeal court is in the government's favour, we will request leave from the Supreme Court to hear the case. If the case is heard in the Supreme Court of Canada, the decision will be final. If the case isn’t granted leave to be heard in the Supreme Court, the decision of the appeal court will be final.

Time and Money

We estimate the total costs for arguing and overseeing this case to be in the range of $300,000 - $350,000, spread out over the course of 2 - 4 years.

At each step, we will set a goal based on our estimate of the costs at each stage, and ask supporters to contribute to help us reach that goal, and to ensure the case can continue to move forward.