Case concerning the constitutional validity of s. 88.1 of the Alberta Traffic Safety Act, creating the administrative suspension of a driver’s licence upon being charged with impaired driving.

Held: Section 88.1 TSA violates ss. 7 and 11, and is not saved by s. 1.

“The violation of the fundamental constitutional rights of all accused drivers under ss. 7 and 11(d) of the Charter which flow directly from the administrative licence suspension regime is clear, broad, and significantly deleterious.” The universal pre-trial suspension of licences was found to be grossly disproportionate to the objective of deterring impaired driving. Further, the administrative licence regime created by s. 88.1 was not the least intrusive solution to the identified problem of traffic safety. “The evidence supporting any incremental salutary effect from the universal administrative licence suspension regime is weak … Meanwhile the deleterious effects are evident.”

Paperny, JA dissented.

N. Whitling – Defence Counsel