Special Chambers Judicial Review Applications in Alberta, 2012 (Rev 3)


When legal counsel is considering an administrative action or decision in relation to whether judicial review may be available to challenge the action or decision, counsel must: understand the concept of judicial review; understand whose actions and decisions are subject to judicial review; determine the time limitation period for filing and serving an application for judicial review; determine the court in which the application for judicial review should be filed, which depends on who the decision-maker is; understand what kinds of administrative decisions are subject to judicial review; understand what kinds of evidence are admissible in judicial review hearings; and determine which standard of review the court is likely to apply to the administrative action or decision. These topics are discussed in Parts II through VIII of this paper.

Once counsel has determined judicial review would be viable and available to challenge the administrative action or decision, and has received client instructions to advance the judicial review, counsel must understand the requisite procedures involved in initiating an application for judicial review. The processes are markedly different at the Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal, than they are at Alberta’s superior court—the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. Parts IX – XII of this paper are confined to discussing rules, procedures, and specific forms involved in an application for judicial review at the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta.

Parts XIII through XV briefly discuss oral advocacy in special chambers, remedies available in judicial review proceedings, and appeals from judicial review proceedings.

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