Announcements

Notice - COVID-19

Mar 16, 2020

 

COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus, is having widespread effects. Matters are evolving rapidly. The Court of Appeal is reviewing matters daily to stay on top of the situation in the spread of this virus. Actions taken are being guided by the advice of Canadian public health authorities.

The Court’s Pandemic Response Plan is being adapted to meet concerns and challenges of COVID-19 with a view to mitigating negative effects on Court operations and the delivery of justice. Keeping the public and the profession informed is part of this Plan.

The directions issued in this Notice are being made in accordance with Section E of the Consolidated Practice Directions of the Court. Therefore, these directions constitute Emergency Practice Directions and will remain in effect until terminated.

Prevention and Protection

Everyone must do their part to contain the spread of the virus. We ask that members of the public and profession comply with all recommendations of Alberta Health Services to ensure the safety of everyone visiting and working at the courthouses in this province as well as their own safety. The most up-to-date information can be accessed by visiting https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx

The Court continues to follow and implement prevention and protection practices both within its work environment and in the courtrooms. The Court’s judges and staff are following Alberta Health Services travel and self-isolation guidelines.

Communications

Since matters can change quickly, parties can expect more frequent communications. Please continue to monitor this Court’s website for changes.

Attendance at the Court of Appeal

The recommendations from federal and provincial health authorities are to practice social distancing and be cautious in attending public spaces or events in order to slow or prevent the potential spread of COVID-19. Personal contact should be kept to a minimum as part of the community’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020, it is recommended that only those persons necessary to the proceedings attend before the Court. This will include counsel, litigants and members of the media. No one who is ill or experiencing any COVID-19 related symptoms should attend.

Filing Deadlines and Communicating with the Court

Filing deadlines have not changed. The Court’s Case Management Officers remain available to consider requests for extensions, fiats and other administrative directions.

For cases involving the Court of Appeal, parties and counsel are encouraged to provide the Registry with an email address if they have not already done so. At this time and until notified otherwise, correspondence from and to this Court may be sent by email instead of fax.

The Court of Appeal Registry is operating on social distancing guidelines that are posted at the Court of Appeal Registry counters. Please respect these guidelines.

Single Judge Duty Matters in the Court of Appeal

Effective March 23, 2020, the following protocol will apply to matters set down before a single duty judge of the Court of Appeal:

  1. Unless otherwise directed by a case management officer or a judge, all duty matters set down before a single judge will be heard by telephone conference. The participants must provide the Registry with contact telephone numbers for that purpose in advance of the hearing date. Communications with the Edmonton Registry are to be sent by email to Edmonton.Registry@albertacourts.ca or by phone to 780-422-2416. Communications with the Calgary Registry are to be sent by email to Calgary.Registry@albertacourts.ca or by phone to 403-297-2206.
  2. Personal attendance in chambers will not be permitted without prior written authorization from a case management officer or a judge.
  3. The parties may consent to adjourn any matter sine die, although the parties are reminded that under R. 14.44(2), applications for permission to appeal must be heard within six months or they are deemed abandoned. Further, under R. 14.52, all other applications (including applications to a three judge panel) must be heard within three months or they are deemed abandoned. Applications for a fiat to extend the time may be made to a case management officer.
  4. The parties may consent to having applications decided on the paper record only without oral argument: R. 14.51. If the parties consent to proceed in that manner, the Registry should be advised in writing before the scheduled hearing date.

Any further inquiries can be directed to the Case Management Officers.

Appeal Sittings and Applications Before Three Judge Panels

Effective March 30, 2020, the following protocol will apply to appeals and applications to be heard by a three judge panel of the Court of Appeal:

  1. Unless otherwise directed by a case management officer or a judge, all appeals and applications before a three judge panel will be heard electronically (by videoconference or by telephone). The participants must provide the Registry with contact videoconference or telephone numbers for that purpose in advance of the hearing date. Communications with the Edmonton Registry are to be sent by email to Edmonton.Registry@albertacourts.ca or by phone to 780-422-2416. Communications with the Calgary Registry are to be sent by email at Calgary.Registry@albertacourts.ca or by phone to 403-297-2206.
  2. If anyone feels that an in person oral hearing is required (whether by reason of s 688 of the Criminal Code or otherwise), they are directed to contact a case management officer to explain why the appeal or application requires an in person oral argument and the Court will issue a direction.
  3. Personal attendance in court will not be permitted without prior written authorization from a case management officer or a judge.
  4. The parties may consent to adjourn any appeal or application sine die.
  5. The parties may consent to having the appeal or application decided on the paper record only without oral argument: R. 14.32(2) for appeals and R. 14.51 for applications. If the parties consent to proceed in that manner, the Registry should be advised in writing in advance of the hearing date.

Any further inquiries can be directed to the Case Management Officers.

As matters unfold, the Court may reduce or suspend Court operations or implement other measures including alternative measures for communication and filing of documents as warranted. Please continue to monitor this website for up-to-date information relating to this Court.