On March 30, 2020, the Minister of Justice and Solicitor General issued Ministerial Order 27/2020 (the “Ministerial Order”) suspending limitation periods under a number of statutes, including the Limitations Act, until June 1, 2020. The Ministerial Order was retroactive to March 17, 2020.
The Law Society of Alberta recently confirmed with the Minister of Justice and Solicitor General that the Ministerial Order will not be extended beyond June 1, 2020. The result is that any limitation periods suspended under the Ministerial Order will begin to run again on June 1, 2020.
This means that 75 days are added to any limitation period under legislation included in the Ministerial Order that was set to expire sometime after March 17, 2020. The impact of the Ministerial Order will therefore impact limitations arguments and claims for years to come.
The Ministerial Order does not apply to all legislation in Alberta. Notably, it excludes the Builders Lien Act and the Insurance Act. Limitation periods under these Acts were never extended by the Ministerial Order.
The complete Ministerial Order, along with the schedule of legislation to which the Ministerial Order applies, may be viewed here.
While limitation periods resume as of June 1, 2020, the Court of Queen’s Bench extended the suspension of the court’s sitting until June 26, 2020 at the earliest. This means that any civil matters scheduled for hearing are adjourned sine die, unless otherwise directed by the Court.
Further, all filing deadlines under the Alberta Rules of Court, within the exception of Rules applicable to the commencement of proceedings, are suspended until June 26, 2020. Master Order 4 may be viewed here.
For more information or any further questions, please contact Jordanna Cytrynbaum.