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Supreme Court of British Columbia

Last updated:
January 22, 2021

Supreme Court Covid-19 Announcement Page

  • January 21, 2021 - PROTOCOL FOR COMMUNICATION AND TESTING RELATED TO COVID-19 IN COURTHOUSES. In light of concerns raised by the BC Courts, counsel and other courthouse users about the need for timely and coordinated communication about COVID-19 testing and exposures in courthouses, the three levels of Court and Court Services Branch met with senior health officials and have created a protocol that is now in effect. See the Protocol here.
  • January 11, 2021 - ABBOTSFORD LAW COURTS - CHAMBERS APPLICATIONS OF TWO HOURS OR LESS. The new Supreme Court location in Abbotsford will open on January 18, 2021. The Court will begin hearing chambers applications of two hours or less in Abbotsford the week of February 16, 2021. Please see the attached notice for more information.
  • December 22, 2020 - END OF SUSPENSION OF LIMITATION PERIODS. On December 21, 2020 the Provincial Government announced that the suspension of limitation periods is no longer linked to the duration of the state of emergency, and the suspension will end on March 25, 2021. For more information, see the Court’s amended COVID-19 Notice No. 34, here, and Order in Council 655/2020, here.
  • December 1, 2020 - ABBOTSFORD LAW COURTS - BOOKING CONFERENCES AND LENGTHY CHAMBERS APPLICATIONS. The Supreme Court will begin sitting at the Abbotsford Law Courts on February 1, 2021. Please see the attached notice for information about booking lengthy chambers applications, judicial case conferences, trial management conferences and case planning conferences in Abbotsford.
  • November 25, 2020 - UPDATE: FACE MASKS OR FACE COVERINGS IN BRITISH COLUMBIA COURTHOUSES. Effective immediately, people attending courthouses in British Columbia are required to wear a face mask or face covering, including in entrances, lobbies, waiting areas, registries, hallways, stairways, restrooms and elevators. In addition, people are required to wear a face mask or face covering in courtrooms unless the presiding judge, justice, master or registrar directs otherwise.

    Face masks or face coverings must be worn in a manner that cover a person’s nose and mouth. If you do not have a face mask or face covering, Sheriffs will provide one when you enter the courthouse. While wearing a face mask or face covering can reduce the spread of infection, it does not substitute for physical distancing, which must be maintained whenever possible. The requirement to wear a face mask or face covering does not apply:
  • to a child who is less than twelve years of age,
  • to a person who is unable to wear a face mask or face covering because of (i) a psychological, behavioural or health condition, or (ii) a physical, cognitive or mental impairment,
  • to a person who is unable to put on or remove a face mask or face covering without the assistance of another person,
  • if the face mask or face covering is removed temporarily for the purpose of identifying the person wearing it.

In addition, all people attending courthouses in British Columbia are asked to be familiar with all health and safety protocols and to cooperate in following them in order to protect everyone in courthouses in this province.

  • November 12, 2020 - ABBOTSFORD LAW COURTS - CRIMINAL FIX DATES AND TRIALS. The Supreme Court will begin sitting at the Abbotsford Law Courts on February 1, 2021. Please see the attached notice for information regarding criminal fix-dates and trials for criminal cases originating in Abbotsford Provincial Court, which will ultimately proceed in the Abbotsford Law Courts. Please also see the previous notice issued September 24, 2020 here.
  • November 6, 2020 - FACE MASKS IN BRITISH COLUMBIA COURTHOUSES. Chief Justice Bauman, Chief Justice Hinkson and Chief Judge Gillespie have jointly issued the following statement on behalf of all courts in British Columbia:

Effective Monday, November 9, 2020, people attending courthouses in British Columbia are strongly encouraged to wear face masks, including in entrances, waiting areas, registries, hallways, stairways, restrooms and elevators. If you do not have a face mask, Sheriffs will provide one when you enter the courthouse. While wearing a face mask can reduce the spread of infection, it does not substitute for physical distancing, which must be maintained whenever possible. Children under two years of age, persons with a medical condition or disability that inhibits wearing a face mask and persons who are unable to place or remove a face mask without assistance are exempt. In addition, while inside individual courtrooms the presiding judge, justice, master or registrar in a courtroom may modify this recommendation. All people attending courthouses in British Columbia are asked to be familiar with all health and safety protocols and to cooperate in observing them in order to protect everyone in courthouses in this province.

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