Interior of a Surrey court room. (Cliff MacArthur/provincialcourt.bc.ca)

Legal time limitations on civil court proceedings in B.C. suspended due to COVID-19

Order applies during the current state of emergency and includes any extension

The provincial government has suspended legal time limitations connected to civil court proceedings due to COVID-19.

“Limitation periods to commence court proceedings in British Columbia have been suspended, and statutory decision-makers have been provided discretion to waive, suspend or extend time periods related to their powers,” the Ministry of Attorney General said in a press release Friday.

“At the request of the Attorney General, the Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General has made the order under the Emergency Program Act to protect public health and to recognize that during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, British Columbians involved in legal or administrative proceedings may be unable to take steps required by legislation.”

The order means that mandatory limitation periods, and other mandatory time periods otherwise in place that are established in laws are suspended. This applies civil or family actions, proceedings, claims or appeals that should have been commenced in the provincial court, Supreme Court or Court of Appeal.

“The order applies during the current state of emergency, including any extension of the state of emergency.”

As for criminal matters, the regular court operations have been suspended but as of March 25, urgent matters are proceeding in “hub” courts.

All criminal matters in the Fraser Region are being dealt with in Surrey, the Interior Region in Kelowna, for the Northern Region in Prince George, Vancouver at 222 Main Street, and on Vancouver Island in Victoria.

A Victoria defence lawyer has expressed concern about the court closures on the rights of accused to safe confinement and a fair trial.

• READ MORE: Court shutdown could threaten safe confinement and fair trials: B.C. defence lawyer

• READ MORE: COVID-19: B.C. supreme and provincial courts suspend regular operations


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

@PeeJayAitch
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Cops and CourtsCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Considerations made to keep Crofton drive-by birthday celebrations going

Trucks will tone it down or not use horns at all to bring some joy to kids and older folks

May weather all over the map in the Chemainus Valley

Dramatic departure from monthly normals seen over the last few years

North Cowichan Mayor assesses drive-by celebration situation in Crofton

Siebring says bylaw officer’s response to a complaint routinely done all the time

COVID-19 birthday drive-by celebrations snuffed out in Crofton

Bylaw officer visit with threats of a fine mean parade trucks taken off the road

Hot ticket: Tickets on sale tonight for drive-in theatre at Cowichan Exhibition

Fresh Air Cinema bringing Onward and The Lion King to the big screen at the Cowichan Exhibition

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Be cautious expanding COVID-19 bubble, Dr. Bonnie Henry tells B.C.

Senior homes stay off-limits as schools, businesses reopen

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

RCMP, coroner investigate ‘unexpected deaths’ on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

Summer tubing ban on Cowichan River lifted

The Tube Shack opening on June 27

Most Read