Bruce Feldthusen


Bruce Feldthusen
Full Professor

B.A. (Hons.) (Queen's)
LL.B. (Western Ontario)
LL.M. (Michigan)
S.J.D. (Michigan)

Room: 57, Louis Pasteur St., Room BRS 427
Office: 613-562-5800 ext. 2685
Office: 613-562-5124
Work E-mail:


You can access my selected publications and not previously published papers on SSRN at:

Bruce Feldthusen originally joined the University as Dean of the Common Law Section in January 2000. In addition to his role as dean, he also taught Torts, Administrative Law, Remedies, and Human Rights. He was renewed for a second term as dean in 2005. In September 2007 Feldthusen was appointed Vice-President, University Relations pro tempore at the University of Ottawa, and he returned full time to Common Law as dean in July 2008. He stepped down as dean at the end of his term on June 30, 2013. He continues as an active full-time professor.

Feldthusen is best known for his book, Economic Negligence, a sixth edition of which was published in the spring of 2011. His analysis of pure economic loss has been adopted by the Supreme Court of Canada and now provides the organizing framework for all negligence actions in that field. He is also an author of the leading text Canadian Tort Law, which he co-authors with the late Justice Linden and Professors Margaret Hall, Eric Knutson, and Hilary Young as well as the case book, Canadian Tort Law, which he co-authored with the late Justice Linden and Lewis Klar. He was one of the first legal academics in the world to study and write about civil remedies for victims of sexual assault. This multidisciplinary research includes extensive interviewing and publication of how survivors themselves experience the legal compensation processes.

Feldthusen was the research director for the Ontario Law Reform Commission’s 1989 study on Exemplary Damages which has been cited with approval and adopted in many common law jurisdictions in Canada and abroad. He has also written in the area of equality theory, and human rights law. His article "Civil Liability for Sexual Assault in Aboriginal Residential Schools: The Baker Did It" won the 2006-08 Canadian Journal of Law and Society Article Prize.

Bruce Feldthusen has also practised law, and litigated a number of cases of public interest on a pro bono basis. He works frequently as a litigation consultant and has had a major role in the preparation of numerous Supreme Court of Canada factums and arguments during the past decade. In recent years, Feldthusen has assisted counsel in the preparation of a number of high profile class actions in tort. Feldthusen is Canada's representative at the World Tort Law Society, a member of the American Law Institute, and is a past-President of the Canadian Law Deans.


  • Economic Negligence, (6th ed.)(Toronto: Carswell, 2012).
  • Linden, Feldthusen, Hall, Knutsen, Young, Canadian Tort Law (11th ed.) (Toronto, LexisNexis 2018)
  • Linden, Feldthusen, Canadian Tort Law (10th ed.) (Toronto, LexisNexis 2015).
  • Linden, Klar, Feldthusen Canadian Tort Law Cases Notes and Materials (15th ed.) (Toronto, LexisNexis, 2018) 914 pages.
  • Linden, Feldthusen, Canadian Tort Law (10th ed.) (Toronto, LexisNexis, 2015)
  • Linden, Klar, Feldthusen, Canadian Tort Law; Cases Notes and Materials (14th ed.) (Toronto, Buterworths, 2014).

Selected Articles

  • Ten Reasons to Reject Unique Duties of Care in Negligence in Margaret I Hall, The Canadian Law of Obligations (Toronto, LexisNexis, 2018) Chapter 2 at 25-43.
  • “Please Anns – No More Proximity Soup” (September 4, 2018). Supreme Court of Canada Law Review, Forthcoming ; Ottawa Faculty of Law Working Paper No. 2018-21. Available at SSRN: or
  • Negligent By-Law Enforcement: Let’s Uber Anns right out of Town” (2017), 43 The Advocate’s Quarterly 255
  • “Justice Beverley McLachlin: Canadian Tort Law’s Most Influential Judge - Who knew?” Conference Marking the Retirement of Chief Justice McLachlin at uOttawa, April 10, 2018, forthcoming Supreme Court Law Review.
  • Feldthusen, Bruce and Green, Michael D. and Goldberg, John C. P. and Sharkey, Catherine M., Product Liability in North America (January 2, 2017). Product Liability: Fundamental Questions in a Comparative Perspective, (Eds) Helmut Koziol, Michael D. Green, Mark Lunney, Ken Oliphant, Lixin Yang, Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG, 2017; ISBN 9783110547559; Harvard Public Law Working Paper No. 18-01.
  • Bungled Police Emergency Calls and the Problems with Unique Duties of Care” (2017) 68 UNBLJ. 169
  • Unique Public Duties of Care: Judicial Activism in the Supreme Court of Canada” (2016), 53 Alta L Rev 1.“Hedley Byrne” Misused Then Exiled by the Supreme Court of Canada” in Barker et al eds, The Law of Misstatements, (Hart 2015), Chapter 11.
  • “Supressing Damages in Involuntary Parenthood Actions: Contorting Tort Law, Denying Reproductive Freedom and Discriminating Against Mothers” (2015) 29 Can J. Family Law 11.
  • “Public Authority Immunity from Negligence Liability: Uncertain, Unnecessary, and Unjustified” [2013] 92 Can Bar Rev 211.
  • "Civil Liability for Sexual Assault in Aboriginal Residential Schools: The Baker Did It" (2007) 22 Can J L & S 61-93.
  • "The Anns/Cooper Approach to Duty of Care for Pure Economic Loss: The Emperor Has No Clothes" (2002) 18 C.L.R. (3d) 67-74
  • “Vicarious Liability for Sexual Abuse” (2001) 9 Tort Law Review 173-178
  • “Therapeutic Consequences of Civil Actions for Damages and Compensation Claims by Victims of Sexual Abuse - An Empirical Study” (2000), 12 Can. J. Women & Law (with Olena Hankivsky and Lorraine Greaves), 66-116
  • "Pure Economic Loss - Has the High Court Reinvented the Square Wheel?" (March, 2000) Tort Law Review.
  • “Liability for Pure Economic Loss: Yes, But Why?” (1998), 28 University of Western Australia Law Review 84
  • “Legal Compensation for Sexual Violence: Therapeutic Consequences and Consequences for the Legal System?” (1998), 4 Journal of Psychology, Public Policy and Law 433-451 (Des Rosiers, Feldthusen, and Hankivsky)
  • “Vicarious Liability for Sexual Torts” in Mullany and Linden (Eds.) Torts Tomorrow: A Tribute to John Fleming (LBC Information Services, Sydney, 1998), pp.221-243
  • “Punitive Damages in Canada: Hard Choices and High Stakes” [1998] New Zealand Law Review 741-772; Personal Injury, Special Lectures of the Law Society of Upper Canada 1998, 583-624
  • “Have the Politics of Rate Regulation Produced a Better No-fault Regime for Ontario” (1998), Cahiers de Droit 305
  • “Failure to Confer Discretionary Public Benefits: The Case For Complete Negligence Immunity” (1997), 5 Tort Law Rev. 17-32
  • “The Canadian Experiment with the Civil Action for Sexual Battery,” in Mullany (ed.) Torts In The Nineties, (The Law Book Co., Sidney ,1997) 274-305
  • “Access to the Private Therapeutic Records of Sexual Assault Complainants” (1996) 75 Can. Bar. Rev. 537-563
  • “Punitive Damages in Canada: Can the Coffee Ever Be Too Hot?” (1995), 17 Loyola Of Los Angeles International And Comparative Law Journal 793
  • "Discriminatory Damage Quantification in Civil Actions for Sexual Battery," (1994), 44 U. of Toronto L. J. 133-167
  • "The Civil Action for Sexual Battery: Therapeutic Jurisprudence?" (1993), 25 Ottawa L. Rev. 203-235
  • "If This Is Torts, Negligence Must Be Dead," in Cooper-Stephenson and Gibson (eds.) Tort Theory (Captus Press, 1993)
  • "Awakening From the National Broadcasting Dream" in Flaherty and Manning (eds.), The Beaver Bites Back (McGill-Queen's Press, 1993)
  • "The Gender Wars: Where The Boys Are" (1990), 4 Canadian J. of Women and the Law 66; reprinted in The Chilly Collective (eds) Breaking Anonymity (1995) Wilfred Laurier University Press
  • Ontario Law Reform Commission, (Exemplary Damages Project) Director's Report, 1989
  • "Affirmative Action: Taking Equality Seriously" (1988), 8 Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice 292; reprinted in Banfield (ed.), Readings in Law and Society, (4th ed.), Captus Press, 1991
  • "Are There Too Many Lawyers" (1982), 2 Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice 224; (1982), 16 Law Society of Upper Canada Gazette 272
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