What is the test for a request to transfer a proceeding from one registry to another?

British Columbia, Canada


The following excerpt is from C.C.R. v. T.A.R., 2014 BCSC 620 (CanLII):

The principles to be applied to a request to transfer a proceeding from one registry to another are summarized in Robertson v. Zimmer, 2001 BCSC 1067 at paras. 3-4. There are only two grounds for ordering a change of venue on application by the defendant: the interests of justice or the preponderance of convenience.

In Cooper v. Lynch, 2009 BCSC 1317, Mr. Justice Barrow noted that the plaintiff “has the right to control the course of the litigation,” a right which extends to choosing the location and registry for the trial. While that right is not absolute, and the Rules do permit the defendant to apply for transfers, “overriding the plaintiff’s decision as to the course of the litigation … is only to be done where the “great preponderance” of convenience supports doing so” (para. 10). The balance of convenience is generally assessed by looking at the witnesses involved and the expenses of attendance.

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