Wrongful Dismissal In Alberta: Further Guidance on Summary Judgment
We previously wrote about the Coffey v. Nine Energy decision which appeared to remove the option of summary judgment in employment matters. Summary Judgment is a quicker method of resolving disputes than a trial.
Interestingly, the Court of Appeal of Alberta issued a summary judgment decision in Rudichuk v. Genesis Land Development Corp. 2020ABCA42. This case involved numerous summary judgment applications at different levels. (The case can be found here if you want to read it: https://www.canlii.org/en/ab/abca/doc/2020/2020abca42/2020abca42.htmlsearchUrlHash=AAAAAQAfc3VtbWFyeSBqdWRnbWVudCBlbXBsb3ltZW50IGxhdwAAAAAB&resultIndex=1 )
The Alberta Court of Appeal said at paragraph 35:
...While Summary Judgment applications and motions to strike can be appropriate tools to expedite proceedings, they may not be the most effective vehicles for some disputes. Parties are encouraged to give serious consideration to trial or some form of alternative dispute resolution process as an alternative to summary judgment motions and motions to strike in cases which involve relatively narrow issues, significant credibility contests and somewhat novel claims.
In our view, Summary Judgment may still be obtainable in a straightforward case, or part of a case, where the Bardal factors are being litigated. (For our article about Bardal click here https://www.flodenward.com/post/how-is-severance-calculated-in-alberta ). It may not be advisable in more complex fact scenarios.
If you need to advance a wrongful dismissal case, please feel free to contact us.
The information contained in this article is not legal advice. No solicitor client relationship is formed through this article. The reader is encouraged to retain counsel for advice in these matters.