Supreme Court of Canada appointments selection process

Ottawa, Ontario
30 September 2013

To identify a pool of qualified candidates for appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada consulted with the Attorney General of Québec, the Chief Justice of Québec, the Chief Justice of the Quebéc Superior Court, the Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Appeal, the Chief Justice of the Federal Court, as well as representatives of prominent legal organizations, including the Barreau du Québec and the Canadian Bar Association.  

A long-list of qualified candidates was reviewed by a selection panel made up of five Members of Parliament – three members from the Government caucus and one member from each of the recognized Opposition caucuses, as selected by their respective leaders.

The Supreme Court of Canada Appointments Selection Panel was responsible for assessing the long-listed candidates and providing an unranked list of three qualified and recommended candidates to the Prime Minister of Canada and to the Minister of Justice for their consideration.

The nominee, who was selected from this short-list of three, will appear at a public hearing of an ad hoc committee of parliamentarians to answer questions from Members of Parliament.

This selection process follows the precedent that was first established for the appointment of Mr. Justice Marshall E. Rothstein in 2006, which was repeated for the appointments of Madam Justice A. Karakatsanis and Mr. Justice M. Moldaver in 2011, and Mr. Justice R. Wagner in 2012.