COVID-19 Tax Update: Federal Court announces regional plans for amendments to suspension period

Western and Atlantic Canada

On June 11, 2020 the Federal Court of Canada released an updated Practice Direction and Order advising that the previously announced suspension period will expire in the four provinces of Western Canada and the four provinces of Atlantic Canada on June 15, 2020.

The Court advised that to provide parties and their legal counsel with an opportunity to prepare for hearings, it will not hold in-person hearings before Monday, July 13, 2020 in those provinces and that timelines for the filing of documents and the taking of other procedural steps in proceedings will be extended to June 29, 2020.

Ontario, Quebec, and the Territories

In Ontario, Quebec and the three Territories, the previously announced suspension period, which was set to expire on June 15, 2020, is extended until June 29, 2020. The timelines for the filing of documents and the taking of other procedural steps are extended by 14 days following the end of the suspension period, to July 13, 2020. All hearings that had previously been scheduled to take place from July 11 to July 26, 2020 in those regions are adjourned sine die, and all General Sittings during that period in those regions are cancelled.

The updated Practice Direction and Order can be found here.

A summary of extensions and other policies implemented by courts hearing tax matters across Canada due to the COVID-19 crisis can be found in our blog post “COVID-19 Tax Update: Audits and disputes amidst the pandemic-updated”.