The Canadian Privacy Law Blog: Developments in privacy law and writings of a Canadian privacy lawyer, containing information related to the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (aka PIPEDA) and other Canadian and international laws.

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The author of this blog, David T.S. Fraser, is a Canadian privacy lawyer who practices with the firm of McInnes Cooper. He is the author of the Physicians' Privacy Manual. He has a national and international practice advising corporations and individuals on matters related to Canadian privacy laws.

For full contact information and a brief bio, please see David's profile.

Please note that I am only able to provide legal advice to clients. I am not able to provide free legal advice. Any unsolicited information sent to David Fraser cannot be considered to be solicitor-client privileged.

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The views expressed herein are solely the author's and should not be attributed to his employer or clients. Any postings on legal issues are provided as a public service, and do not constitute solicitation or provision of legal advice. The author makes no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained herein or linked to. Nothing herein should be used as a substitute for the advice of competent counsel.

This web site is presented for informational purposes only. These materials do not constitute legal advice and do not create a solicitor-client relationship between you and David T.S. Fraser. If you are seeking specific advice related to Canadian privacy law or PIPEDA, contact the author, David T.S. Fraser.

Monday, April 04, 2005

BC Court dismisses union's privacy arguments in case over outsourcing 

Professor Michael Geist, in his blog, is reporting on the BC union's loss in the courts in the battle against the provincial government's outsourcing of medicare processing services. The court opined on the adequacy of privacy protection in the oursourcing arrangement: B.C. Government and Services Employees' Union v. British Columbia (Minister of Health Services), 2005 BCSC 446. - B.C. Court Dismisses Privacy Claim Over Data Outsourcing :

"The British Columbia Supreme Court has dismissed a claim by a B.C. union challenging the outsourcing of the management of health information to a U.S. company. The court emphasized the importance of privacy protection, but concluded that 'the contractual provisions, the corporate structure, and the legislative provisions provide more than reasonable security with respect to records in British Columbia.' It also noted that 'all reasonable steps to ensure the confidentiality of the information which Maximus will receive in order to discharge its contractual obligations. Privacy is not absolute.' Case name is BC Govt Serv. Empl. Union v. British Columbia (Minister of Health Services).

A very interesting decision since it may set the standard for the privacy issues and protections to consider when creating a data outsourcing to the United States. The case is part of an ongoing battle dating back to last summer over the Patriot Act and the protection of Canadian personal information. As I argued with Milana Homsi, the real issue is not the outsourcing of data to the U.S. Rather, it is the ability of U.S. courts to assert jurisdiction over Canadian organizations with even a small U.S. presence, which, notwithstanding PIPEDA, effectively limits the privacy protection enjoyed in Canada."

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