June 28, 2013
Bulletin: Federal Court – Expedite Access to Justice
Posted by: Mario D. Bellissimo
OTTAWA, June 28, 2013 – The Federal Court has issued an Amended Notice to the Parties and the Profession regarding the Fast-Track Pilot Project (Immigration) that was launched on May 7, 2013. The Amended Notice clarifies certain aspects of the pilot project.
As previously announced, the principal objective of this initiative is to expedite access to justice by substantially reducing the time to a hearing and disposition. The Court estimates that participation in this pilot project will expedite the hearing of applications for judicial review by approximately four to eight months.
This pilot project will be optional and is open to: (i) all applications received after the date of the initial Notice, and (ii) all applications previously filed, where the parties have not yet filed their applicant’s and respondent’s records. To participate in the pilot project, both the applicant and the respondent must consent.
Parties can assume that they and the Court will have the certified tribunal record [CTR] within 21 days of the order granting Leave, consistent with existing practice.
The Amended Notice clarifies that either party will retain the ability to opt-out of the pilot project. This can be done by way of letter at any time within 10 days from the date by which the CTR must be produced. After that time, requests for adjournment must be made in accordance with the Court’s recently revised Notice to the Profession (Adjournments). Parties will also retain the ability to request that a serious question of general importance be certified.
The Court will make every effort to schedule the hearing of the application within 45-60 days of the Judge’s decision to grant Leave. Where parties intend to file further written submissions, the Court will endeavour to schedule the hearing within 60-70 days. The Court will make every effort to issue its decision as quickly as possible after the hearing.
A copy of the Amended Notice can be obtained via the Web site of the Federal Court: http://cas-ncr-nter03.cas-satj.gc.ca/portal/page/portal/fc_cf_en/Notices.