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BUAD 209 Business Law

This library guide will provide you with information to complete your Canadian case law or legislation research.

Apply the law to your facts

Remember to note up!

Case Law

After a case is decided it could be:

  • appealed or possibly overturned; called judicial history
  • used as precedence or criticized in another case/decision; called judicial treatment

Researching the judicial history and treatment of a case is called "noting up."


Similarly, checking the treatment and application of a statute (or portion of a statute) is also called "noting up."

Noting Up Tool

LexisNexis® Quicklaw has an online citator called Quickcite that notes up cases and legislation.

Quicklaw "Noting Up" Terminology

Case Treatment Symbols

  1. Negative Treatment — (red symbol) the case has negative history ( judicial review allowed, reconsideration allowed, reversed, quashed, or varied by a higher court) or negative treatments (not followed or questioned by a subsequent court).
  2. Cautionary Treatment — (yellow symbol) the case has been distinguished by a subsequent court.
  3. Positive Treatment — (green symbol) the case has positive history (affirmed, judicial review denied, or leave to appeal refused by a higher court) or positive treatments (followed or followed in a minority opinion of a subsequent court).
  4. Neutral Treatment / History Treatment — (blue symbol) the case has neutral treatments (mentioned, explained, or cited, in a dissenting opinion); or the case has history (abandoned, abated, leave to appeal granted, reconsideration denied, related proceeding, same case, or supplementary reasons by a subsequent court), but the citing court doesn’t comment on the case. This symbol is also associated with recently added cases within the last 3 business days, before they have received a citator treatment.
  5. Citator Information — the case has no known history or treatments. Click this link to view more information about the citation.

Definitions of Case Treatments

  1. Distinguished — cited case is held to be inapplicable due to a difference in fact or law.
  2. Explained — citing case adds to, expands upon, or interprets cited case. The cited case is not decisive, but is given some kind of consideration.
  3. Followed — citing case in a majority or plurality opinion applies a principle of law from the cited case. The judge expressly relies on the cited case as a precedent on which to base a decision.
  4. Followed in Minority Opinion — citing case, in an opinion other than a majority, plurality, or dissent, applies a principle of law from the cited case.
  5. Cited — case is cited, and recently added cases may receive a more substantive treatment within 72 hours.
  6. Cited in Dissenting Opinion — case is cited in a dissenting opinion.
  7. Mentioned — citing case provides no more information about the cited case than what is available in the cited case itself.
  8. Not Followed — citing case overrules or refuses to apply the cited case for some reason other than it was distinguishable.
  9. Questioned — citing case criticizes the conclusion or reasoning of the cited case, without refusing to follow it. Alternatively, legislation in force at the time the cited case was decided has been amended to the extent that the cited case might have been decided differently under the amended legislation.

Definitions of Statute Treatments

  1. Unconstitutional — cited statute section was determined by the court to be unconstitutional.
  2. Constitutionality Discussed — the constitutionality of the cited statute section is discussed, but no final determination is made on the issue of constitutionality by the court.
  3. Pursuant to — action or proceeding was brought pursuant to the cited statute section.
  4. Considered — cited statute section was analyzed or interpreted by the court.
  5. Referred to — cited statute section is referred to by the court with no further discussion.
  6. Cited — statute section has been cited and may contain a stronger judicial treatment.

QuickLaw Quick Reference Guide

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