The Judicial Justice Division is an integral and indispensable part of the Provincial Court of British Columbia. During the COVID-19 pandemic BC’s judicial justices and the staff who support them have worked tirelessly to fulfil their responsibilities, innovating and adapting where required, to keep courts accessible while ensuring the health and safety of court users.
The Provincial Court of British Columbia is now using Microsoft Teams (“Teams”) as its platform for some conferences and hearings being held remotely. We are working to expand our use of the Teams video conferencing platform to a wide variety of court proceedings, when this technology is suitable for the litigants and the issues involved.
In the middle of March, 2020, an unprecedented worldwide pandemic created a state of emergency in British Columbia and elsewhere in Canada. Public health officers delivered advice to people to stay home. Almost overnight, offices were shuttered, schools were closed, and courts reduced their operations to urgent matters.
The Provincial Court of BC has been holding court in Bella Bella, Klemtu, and Bella Coola on BC’s Central Coast for many years.
In order to help minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Provincial Court of BC is holding urgent family, child protection, and small claims hearings by telephone instead of in person. We are also working towards being able to offer some hearings using video technology, when that is appropriate for the parties involved and their case.