Supreme Court Operations – Gander and Grand Falls-Windsor
As the Special Measures Order issued by the Chief Medical Officer of Health on May 24, 2021, remains in effect and certain towns and communities in the Northeast and Central Region of the Province remain at Alert Level 4, the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador is issuing this Notice to the Profession and General Public affecting the Judicial Centres of Gander and Grand Falls-Windsor for the week of May 31-June 4, 2021.
OPERATIONS FOR WEEK OF MAY 31-JUNE 4, 2021
For the week of May 31-June 4, 2021, the Supreme Court’s General Division Judicial Centres in Gander and Grand Falls-Windsor will continue with a virtual services model. During this period, these Court locations will continue to hear matters virtually, as further discussed below. These Court locations will also continue to hear any urgent or emergency matter that arises. Those matters will also be held virtually, unless a judge determines that the urgent or emergency matter must be held in-person. Additional details of the Supreme Court’s operations in those Judicial Centres for the week of May 31-June 4, 2021 are provided below.
Urgent and Emergency Matters
These Judicial Centres will continue to hear urgent and emergency matters during the week of May 31-June 4, 2021.
- If you are seeking an urgent hearing, please contact the applicable Registry using the contact information in the notice.
- All urgent requests and filings will be assessed by a judge to determine if they may proceed.
- The Court will provide directions to the parties regarding how and when an urgent hearing will be conducted.
If a judge directs that a matter will proceed in-person, the matter will be held in accordance with the COVID-19 Guidelines issued by the Court. Note that everyone permitted to enter a courthouse is required to wear a mask, keep appropriate distance from others, and sanitize their hands frequently.
The following criminal matters are considered urgent and will proceed by videoconference or audioconference, in accordance with s. 515(2.2) of the Criminal Code, or, where necessary, in-person: bail hearings, bail review applications where the accused is in custody, and detention reviews.
The following family proceedings will be considered urgent and will proceed by videoconference or audioconference, or, where necessary, in-person: requests for urgent relief relating to the safety of a child or parent; applications relating to medical decisions or wrongful removal of a child; applications to preserve property or assets; warrants under the Children, Youth and Families Act; and new applications under the Adult Protection Act.
Hearings and Conferences
Any hearing or conference that was already scheduled to be held by teleconference and videoconference during the week of May 31-June 4, 2021, will proceed.
The Court will also, subject to the availability of teleconferencing or videoconferencing equipment, continue hearing the following types of appearances by teleconference or videoconference. Parties will be contacted as soon as possible with arrangements for attending virtually.
- Criminal Proceedings: pre-trial conferences; case management conferences; resolution conferences; applications to set a date; and any other application that a judge determines may proceed virtually.
- Civil Proceedings: case management meetings; pre-trial conferences; settlement conferences; appeals; applications to set a date; and any other application that a judge determines may proceed virtually.
- Family Proceedings: case management hearings; interim application hearings; default summons; objection to recalculation hearings; trial readiness conferences; and settlement conferences.
Filing and Processing Documents
Registries in these Judicial Centres will remain closed for the week of May 31-June 4, 2021, but the drop boxes at the entrances of courthouses will re-open to permit contactless drop-off and pick-up of documents. The drop boxes are only accessible (for drop-off and pick-up) during the hours noted in the notice.
Note that all filings for these locations must now be made at the drop boxes – email filings will no longer be accepted (with the exception of email filings permitted in accordance with Practice Note P.N. 2020-03).
Filing fees must be paid in one of the following ways: (1) the filing party may include a cheque enclosed with the document being filed; or (2) the filing party may provide a contact name and number with the document so that the Court can process a credit card payment by phone.
Forms may be downloaded from the Court’s website.
If the document filed requires the setting of an appearance, such as a return date, please be advised that the Court may not be able to provide such a date at this time.
Further note that if the document that you are filing requires that your signature be witnessed by a commissioner for oaths, you must arrange for this prior to filing the document. The Court will not be able to witness signatures at the Registry counter at this time.
Processing times may be delayed owing to reduced staffing levels.