Forest Fibers Inc. v. R. – TCC: Appellant Permitted to File Amended Notice of Appeal

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Forest Fibers Inc. v. The Queen[1] (November 8, 2013) is a relatively standard motion for leave to file an amended Notice of Appeal in a GST appeal dealing with disputed input tax credits.  The court reviews the proposed amendments in detail and examines the jurisprudence in the area (which is fairly well-known and largely non-contentious).  In the result the amendments were allowed:

[42]        Overall, I find that most of the amendments do not affect the position of the respondent and, accordingly, do not cause a prejudice to the respondent.

[43]        Moreover, it is to be noted that in her written representations opposing the motion, the respondent did not argue that she would suffer non-compensable prejudice if the amendments were granted by this Court.

[44]        While I find that the facts underlying the amendments were or should have been within the appellant’s knowledge at the time of filing the Notice of Appeal, this delay, however, even if due to the carelessness of the appellant, is not determinative unless it results in prejudice to the respondent. This is not the case in this proceeding.

The court imposed some conditions in connection with the amendments none of which appeared particularly onerous or surprising:

[48]        I impose the following terms:

−                   The Amended Notice of Appeal will be deemed to be filed on the day of this Order;

−                   The respondent will have 60 days from the date of this Order to file and serve a Reply to Amended Notice of Appeal;

−                   The respondent will have the right to conduct further examinations for discovery on representatives of the appellant with respect to these amendments;

−                   The appellant shall bear the costs of the present motion and if further examinations for discovery are held, the appellant shall bear the costs of such discovery. The costs are awarded in accordance with Tariff B- Amounts to be Allowed on Taxation of Party and Party Costs;

−                   The appeal is adjourned sine die. The parties will communicate with the Court to schedule a new hearing date.

[1] 2013 TCC 402.