Case Report – Case about filing “unofficial transcript” of administrative tribunal hearing to proceed at BCCA

On August 10th, the British Columbia Court of Appeal granted leave to appeal a decision that permitted a judicial review applicant to file a self-produced transcript of a British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal hearing.

The applicant first asked the Tribunal to produce an official transcript and was denied. It then took recordings and produced its own transcript with the Tribunal’s consent pursuant to a provision in the Tribunal rules that specifies that such a recording, “is not part of the official record of the tribunal’s proceedings.”

The applicant lost on the merits and brought an application for judicial review. It alleged that the Tribunal breached procedural fairness by declining to record the hearing itself and also raised bias and “unreasonable findings of fact not supported by the evidence” as grounds for review. The applicant filed its “unofficial transcript” and the respondent was unsuccessful on its motion to strike.

In granting leave to appeal, the Court said:

Whether this development accords with the complex framework of modern administrative law in British Columbia seems to be a question that should be fully argued and canvassed. If leave were to be denied and the judicial review were to proceed, the issue could become lost in the ‘factual matrix’ of the case and the human rights and labour law communities would be left in doubt on this important evidentiary point. As it is, the hearing of the substantive issue before the court below has been adjourned a this appeal could be heard without delay.

SELI Canada Inc. v. Construction and Specialized Workers’ Union, Local 1611, 2010 BCCA 371 (CanLII).

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