CANADIAN IMPERIAL BANK OF COMMERCE v HAYDEN, 2023 ABKB 384
10.49: Penalty for contravening rules
14.5: Appeals only with permission
This was an Appeal of a Review Officer's decision pertaining to litigation Costs associated with a residential foreclosure.
The Appellant, Ms. Hayden, had previously engaged in extensive litigation involving many opposing parties at Alberta’s Court of King’s Bench, the Alberta Court of Appeal, and on six occasions, sought leave to Supreme Court of Canada. All Supreme Court Leave to Appeal Applications were denied, and Ms. Hayden, in five instances was ordered to pay Costs. As a result, Ms. Hayden was made subject to a Court access gatekeeping Decision in 2020.
The Court’s access gatekeeping decision outlined five stringent requirements Ms. Hayden needed to comply with prior to filing any documents with the Alberta Court of King’s Bench, including proof that Ms. Hayden had paid outstanding Cost penalties of $11,000, pursuant to Rule 10.49. Ms. Hayden had not paid the outstanding Costs; however, penalties were paid to the Court during the disbursement of funds in the foreclosure Action.
Ms. Hayden sought to Appeal the Review Officer’s decision regarding the litigation Costs as assessed, following the foreclosure Action brought by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC). However, her grounds for Appeal, as outlined in her 220-page, unsworn and unsigned Affidavit and other documents, largely failed to pertain to the Review Officer's role in examining the legitimacy of billed lawyer expenses and disbursements.
The Court found that Ms. Hayden’s issues ranged from complaints about penalties levied by Associate Chief Justice Rooke to alleged misrepresentation of her residence, none of which related to the scope of the Review Officer's mandate, thereby failing to provide a reasonable basis for Appeal. Moreover, as per Rule 14.5, the Court noted that no Appeal would be allowed to the Court of Appeal, as Ms. Hayden had been declared a vexations litigant by the Court.
The Court found that Ms. Hayden’s ground of Appeal had largely been litigated and resolved in the past. By seeking to contest these settled issues, Ms. Hayden was engaging in a collateral attack on prior proceedings. Additionally, the transcript of the hearing before the Review Officer revealed that Ms. Hayden sought to re-litigate long settled issues, which was beyond the scope of the Review Officer's function. The Court held that this kind of conduct was considered an abuse of Court processes and represented yet another reason to deny the Leave to Appeal.
The Court noted that it had previously observed that Ms. Hayden was essentially unmanageable, and that the Court lacked the effective mechanisms to mitigate the harm and waste Ms. Hayden had inflicted with her persistent, repeated, repetitious, and abusive leave requests.
Hence, the Court concluded that Ms. Hayden's proposed Appeal was an abuse of Court processes and rejected her leave to Appeal Application, advising her to seek professional legal assistance and to reconsider her litigation approach.View CanLII Details