Important Upcoming Appeal re Limitations Periods at the LAT

By Jonathan R. Charland Mar 11, 2020

Parties at the LAT can look forward to clarity from the Divisional Court, it was originally scheduled to hear the appeal of A.F. v North Blenheim Mutual Insurance Co. on April 21, 2020 and that date has been postponed and as of yet, not rescheduled.

In the meantime, confusion continues to percolate at the LAT as adjudicators are relying on inconsistent LAT reconsideration decisions and no higher appellate authority guiding them as to whether the LAT has jurisdiction under s. 7 of the LAT Act to extend the limitation period set out in s. 56 of the SABS.

LAT adjudicators have taken inconsistent views on the interpretation and applicability of s. 7 of the LAT Act. On the one hand, as discussed in Sharla Bandoquillo’s blog, the Tribunal decided in A.F. v North Blenheim Mutual Insurance Co. (December 13, 2017), that it has jurisdiction “to extend the time for giving the notice either before or after the expiration of the limitation of time” where there are reasonable grounds to do so. On the other hand, as discussed in Dale Stuckless’ blog, the Tribunal decided in 18-001196 v Certas Home and Auto Insurance Co. (September 5, 2019) that it did not have jurisdiction to extend the limitation period set out in the regulations.

The current uncertainty and lack of finality has produced additional hearings, arguments, and reconsiderations, and generally creates unnecessary delays and has increased the cost of LAT proceedings. Until this important Divisional Court decision is released, the muddy waters at the LAT will undoubtedly continue.

Jonathan Charland is author of this blog and member of the Licence Appeal Tribunal practice group at the firm. If you have a question about the inconsistency around limitation period decisions at the LAT, please contact Jonathan at 416-777-5241.

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