Bench/Bar -7- Some timeline issues; original filings; system

  • 90/60 day deadlines (regarding medical/legal assessments) are, in this crisis, not being rigidly held to; the court will likely be flexible on that in the circumstances.
  • The emergency Regulation extending limitation periods does not, on its terms, suspend time the periods set out in pre-existing orders of the court. Are those time periods automatically suspended, or is that to be dealt with on a case by case basis? Could a local or regional practice direction address this gap in the regulation?  “Answer: there is a timetable rule – Rule 3 which deals with the extension of time on consent – everyone should make use of that. Given the Covid crisis, parties should give extensions.
  • Some time-sensitive matters (including lifting writs for the sale of a property) require that original documents be filed. It is not currently known how if there is any way to accommodate these matters or work around the courthouse closing (i.e. filing in open courthouses in other counties or doing so by email with an undertaking to file an original later). 
  • There will probably be changes to filing procedures in light of social distancing requirements when filing offices re-open, but what they are to be is currently unknown.
  • There is a group of judges provincially working with partner organizations in the bar such as the Advocate’s Society that will work on implementing solutions provincially. They are hopeful to have something by April 6 that will allow the Court to begin to move things forward in some fashion.

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