1.2 Do you have a right to appeal your case?

Most trial decisions from the BC Supreme Court can be automatically appealed to the BC Court of Appeal. (See ss.  6 – 8 of the Court of Appeal Act.)

The Court of Appeal may hear an appeal from all BC Supreme Court decisions automatically except for those orders listed in s. 2.1 of the Court of Appeal Rules, which are known as limited appeal orders.

Limited appeal orders include:

  • orders arising from case planning conferences or trial management conferences;
  • orders that grant or refuse extensions of time;
  • interim orders under the Family Law Act;
  • an order as to costs only; or
  • a foreclosure order.

You cannot appeal a decision from the family or small claims court directly to the Court of Appeal without filing an appeal to the Supreme Court first.

You may only appeal some decisions by BC administrative tribunals or others made by provincial or federal bodies.  Usually those decisions must first be reviewed by the BC Supreme Court, unless the statute that created the tribunal says otherwise.  You must read the applicable statutes to understand how to appeal a decision and the procedural timelines that you must follow. (See Rule 16-1 of the Supreme Court Civil Rules).

If the appellant does not have an automatic right to appeal, he or she must make an application to the court to obtain leave (permission) to appeal.  Section 2.1 on how to start an appeal discusses how you obtain leave (permission) to appeal.