Federal Court of Canada

  • January 18, 2021


Federal Court New Practice Direction

The Federal Court has issued a new Practice Direction that supersedes all prior COVID-19 practice directions. This Practice Direction provides an update regarding the Court’s operations and outlines new requirements and protocols for the electronic filing of documents.

Federal Court Notice re: Document Retention

The Federal Court has issued a new Notice to the Parties and the Profession that deals with document retention by the Court. This Notice outlines retention categories for court records and includes a schedule for the conservation of files, annexes, and other records pursuant to Rule 23.1 of the Federal Court Rules. For more information, please see the Notice.

Federal Court Temporary Email Address

The Federal Court has announced that it has set up temporary email addresses for local Federal Court Registry offices. If parties are unable to use the E-Filing Portal due to technical issues following the system’s upgrade, parties may instead file documents by sending them to the Registry offices via email. For more information, please see the following Notice, as well as the Federal Court’s E-Filing Guide.

Federal Court Recess from December 21 to January 7

The Federal Court has advised that it will be in recess from December 21, 2020 to January 7, 2021. The Registry will be closed from December 21, 2020 until January 1, 2021. There will be no in-person hearings at the Federal Court between December 21, 2020 until January 17, 2020. For more information, please see here.

Federal Court Practice Tips For Remote Hearings

Justice Alan Diner of the Federal Court has prepared a guide for Practice Tips for Virtual Immigration Hearings. The guide includes information related to both the technical and advocacy aspects of virtual hearings at the Court. For more information, see the full guide here.

Federal Court Guide for In-Person Proceedings

The Federal Court has published a Guide for the resumption of in-person proceedings. The Guide provides an overview of the new health and safety protocols that will be implemented for in-person hearings, which include physical distancing measures; disinfecting services; contact tracing measures; masking requirements; and protocols for exchanging documents during proceedings.

Federal Court Update on Virtual Hearings

At today’s semi-annual meeting with the Canadian Bar Association and the Department of Justice, Chief Justice Paul Crampton delivered an update on the Federal Court’s Practice Directions, virtual hearings, and the 2020-2025 Strategic Plan. For more information, please see here.

Federal Court: Electronic Filing System Update

The Federal Court has announced that its electronic filing system is being upgraded this weekend. Accordingly, the electronic filing system will be unavailable from October 2 at 8pm until October 4 at 8pm. For more information, please see here.

Federal Court Updated Practice Direction

The Federal Court has issued an updated Practice Direction, containing information about the expiry of the suspension period. The Federal Court’s Orders, Practice Directions, and intervening judgments remain in full force and effect, as per the Reference re Section 6 of Time Limits and Other Periods Act (Covid-19), 2020 FCA 137.

July 15th Update

The Federal Court released its 2020-2025 Strategic Plan. The Court outlines two main objectives in its Plan: significantly increasing access to justice (which includes an update about e-filing and electronic services at the Court), and enhancing the ability of the Court to serve the public across Canada.