H. Archibald Kaiser

Professor of Law | Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine (cross-appointment)


Email: archie.kaiser@dal.ca
Phone: 902-494-1003
Mailing Address: 
Room 421, Weldon Law Building, 6061 University Avenue
PO Box 15000 Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4R2
Research Topics:
  • Criminal Law and Procedure
  • Mental Disability


  • BA (Dalhousie)
  • LLB (Dalhousie)
  • LLM (London)

Bar admissions

  • Nova Scotia, 1977


Professor Kaiser has taught law at Dalhousie since 1979 and has also offered Legal Issues in Psychiatry, in the Residency Training Program at the Department of Psychiatry, since 1995. His current Law School courses include:

Professor Kaiser has previously taught General Jurisprudence, Contracts, Poverty Law, and various competitive moots. He also participates in continuing judicial and bar education conferences, as well as public legal-education events.

Areas of supervision: Criminal Law and Procedure & Mental Disability Law: Civil and Criminal

Selected awards & honours

  • Dalhousie Law Alumni Teaching Award, 2006-07
  • Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal, 2002, for service to persons with mental health problems
  • Recipient of the Graduating Class Ring, 1999

Selected publications

  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Mozzei: Constrained Progress in Construing Review Board Powers" (2006) 36 C.R. 37.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "A Disappointing Look at the Future of Canadian Policing by the Law Commission" (2006) 52 CLQ 112.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Beaudry: New Impetus Towards Equality in Law Enforcement" (2007) 44 C.R. 125.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “The Criminalization of People with Mental Health Problems: Struggling Towards More Effective Responses" and "Effecting Change: A Range of Possible Local Initiatives to Address the Criminalization of People with Mental Health Problems" (2007) 25(2) The Society Record 25.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Reasons to Be Skeptical About Creating or Cautious About Implementing Mental Health Courts in Nova Scotia" (2008) 3(4) The Blue Horse Chronicles 1.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, Book Review of Mental Health and Canadian Society; Historical Perspectives by James E. Moran & David Wright, eds, (2008) 16(3) Health Law Review 79.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "L.M: A Hard Case Makes For Bad Sentencing Law” (2008) 56 C.R. 323.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "McNeil: A Welcome Clarification and Extension of Disclosure Principles" & "The adversary system has lingered on" (2009) 62 C.R. 36.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Patrick: Protecting Canadians' Privacy Interest in Garbage; 'a step too far' for the Supreme Court" (2009) 64 C.R. 30.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Should a person be allowed to refuse psychiatric treatment?" (2009) SZ Magazine 23.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Expanding the Boundaries of Research Involving Death and Near Death When Liberty is Attenuated" (2010) 25(1) Justice Report 12.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Lois en matière de santé mentale au Canada: reconnaître et rectifier une situation problématique" (2009) XXXIV 2 Santé mentale au Québec 75.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Lois en matière de santé mentale au Canada: accélérer la réorientation du navire de l'État (2009) XXXIV 2 Santé mentale au Québec 93.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Canadian Mental Health Law: The Slow Process of Redirecting the Ship of State" (2009) 17 Health LJ 139.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Nasogaluak: Foregone Opportunities in an Unduly Restrained Sentencing Decision" (2010) 72(1) C.R. 29.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Conway: A Bittersweet Victory for Not Criminally Responsible Accused” (2010) 75(2) C.R. 1.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Too Good To Be True: Second Thoughts on the Proliferation of Mental Health Counts", (2010) 29(2) Canadian Journal of Community Mental Health.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Cornell: A Divided Court Accords Too Much Latitude to the Police – 'Canada is not a police state'" (2010) 76 C.R. 263.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Gomboc: The Supreme Court Weakens the Search Warrant Requirement and Facilitates Police Investigations Again" (2011) 79 C.R. 245.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Canadian Prisoners with Mental Health Problems, The Promise (and Limits) of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities” (2011) 32(1) Health L Can 1.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Bouchard-Lebrun: Unduly Limiting Toxic Psychosis and Reigniting the Dangerous Intoxication Debate” (2012) 89 C.R. 68.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Beginning to Examine the Implications for Canadian Lawyers’ Professional Responsibilities" (2012) 20(2) Health Law Review 26.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Law and Psychiatry in the Age of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities” in Hy Bloom & Richard D. Schneider, eds, Law and Mental Disorder: A Comprehensive and Practical Approach (Irwin Law: 2013) 1,333.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Ryan: A Troubling and Doctrinally Meandering Case Sets the Stage for the Law Reform Process and an Independent Inquiry” (2013) 98 Criminal Reports 261.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Babos: Further Narrowing Access to a Stay of Proceedings Where the Integrity of the Judicial Process Is Implicated” (2014) 8 Criminal Reports 59.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Hart: More Positive Steps Needed to Rein In Mr. Big Undercover Operations” (2014) 12 Criminal Reports 304.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Mack: Mr. Big Receives an Undeserved Reprieve, Recommended Jury Instructions Are Too Weak” (2014) 13 Criminal Reports 251.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “Advocating for Persons with Mental Health Problems: Living Up to the Challenges of the Twenty-First Century” in Jennifer Chandler & Colleen M. Flood, eds, Law and Mind: Mental Health Law and Policy in Canada (2016) 253.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, “A Partial Ceasefire in Canada’s War on Drugs? Reflections on the Impending Legalization of Marijuana” (2016) 63 Crim LQ 367.
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "At the mercy of the state", Chronicle Herald (25 September 2015).
  • H. Archibald Kaiser, "Time to throw out incompetency act", Chronicle Herald (22 December 2015).

Service & activity

Professor Kaiser's community service activities have included memberships on Boards of Directors or other forms of support for:

  • Canadian Mental Health Association, Nova Scotia Division
  • Mental Health Commission of Canada, Mental Health and the Law Advisory Committee
  • People First Nova Scotia
  • Canadian Association of Independent Schools

Professor Kaiser also provides regular media contributions in the form of interviews, editorials, or letters concerning criminal law and mental disability law.