Applications Under the New Supreme Court Rules: How Much Detail Does Form 32 Require?
Two of the changes in the new BC Supreme Court Civil Rules are the requirement under Rule 8-1(4) that pre-trial applications be brought using Form 32 and that parties are generally prohibited from providing the Court with written arguments during applications. Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Victoria Registry, addressing how much detail parties should include when filling out Form 32.
In today’s case (Zecher v. Josh) the Plaintiff was injured in a motor vehicle collision. The Defendant brought a motion asking the Plaintiff to produce a Pharmanet Printout, monthly statements from his student line of credit, and particulars of his wage loss claim. The applications were dismissed “largely due to the inadequacy of the material presented”. For this reason the judgement does not go far in addressing the substance of such applications under the new Civil Rules. However, in dismissing the applications Master Bouck provided the following helpful reasons guiding litigants when preparing Form 32:
 Form 32 of the SCCR lends itself to providing both the opposing party and the court with full disclosure of the argument to be made in chambers. Parties should put in as much thought to the necessary content of that Form as is done when preparing the supporting affidavits. When a party is represented, responsibility for that content lies with counsel.
 No doubt the Lieutenant Governor-in-Council intended Part 3 of Form 32 to contain more than a cursory listing of the Rules that might support the particular application. For example, common law authorities can and should be included as well as a brief legal analysis. Such an analysis is particularly helpful given that parties are not able to present a separate written argument in civil chambers unless the application is scheduled to take two hours or more of court time.
 In my experience and observation, a comprehensive legal analysis can easily be included in a 10-page notice of application. As well, Rule 8-1 (4) allows the parties to include a list of authorities in the application record.
 By providing an effective analysis of the legal basis for (or against) making the order, the parties may well be able to resolve the application without attending court.