Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Per Incuriam Definition:

Latin: through want of care.

 A decision infected with some material error such that the rule of stare decisis is displaced.

In United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America , Justice Levine of the British Columbia Court of Appeal adopted these words:

"The per incuriam rule is another example of circumstances in which the Court may decline to follow a previous decision.... As a general rule, the only cases in which decisions should be held to have been given per incuriam are those of decisions given in ignorance or forgetfulness of some inconsistent statutory provision or of some authority binding on the court concerned, so that in such cases some features of the decision or some step in the reasoning on which it is based is found on that account to be demonstrably wrong. This definition is not necessarily exhaustive, but cases not strictly within it which can properly be held to have been decided per incuriam , must in our judgment, consistently with the stare decisis rule which is an essential part of our law, be of the rarest occurrence."



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