Chad Dallas McDonald v. Alberta Health Services, et al.

(Alberta) (Civil) (By Leave)


Civil procedure - Pleadings - Civil Procedure — Pleadings — Whether order at first instance required or merely permitted defendants to file statements of defence by a certain date — Parties — Substitution — Whether defendant may rely on a previously-filed statement of defence where that document pleads against a plaintiff who is no longer a plaintiff.


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The applicant amended his claim against the respondents to remove the corporation he controls as a plaintiff and substitute himself in his personal capacity. The order that permitted this amendment provided a deadline for the respondents to file amended statements of defence. They did not, and instead applied to strike the applicant’s amended claim. The applicant applied to note the respondents in default.

The application judge dismissed the applicant’s application. The respondents were permitted, but not required, to file amended defences, and in any event entitled to rely upon their original statements of defence.

A single judge of the Court of Appeal dismissed an application for an extension of time to appeal the application judge’s ruling on the basis that the appeal had no reasonable prospect of success, substantially for the reasons of the application judge and for the additional reason that the pending applications to strike the amended claim are an absolute bar to default judgment.

The same judge of the Court of Appeal refused permission to appeal her earlier ruling to a panel of the Court of Appeal for substantially the same reasons.