10.30: When costs award may be made

Case Summary

The Plaintiff in this case urged the Court to not make a Costs award as there had been no formal Judgment entered.

The Plaintiff relied on Rule 10.30(1)(c) which states that “[u]nless the Court otherwise orders or these rules otherwise provide, a costs award may be made in respect of trials and all other matters in an action, after judgment or a final order has been entered.”

The Court rejected the Plaintiff’s argument, stating that Rule 10.30(1)(c) “allows the Court to make a costs award even after judgment or a final order has been entered on the substantive issues in dispute”: Kent v MacDonald, 2021 ABQB 953 at para. 26. Indeed, the Rule allows a costs award to be made notwithstanding the entry of a Judgment or final Order, but does not require that procedure to be followed.

The Court added that even if the Plaintiff’s argument was accepted, the Court would exercise its discretion to order that each party should bear its own costs. The Court determined that, while the Defendant was largely successful at Trial, and was therefore presumptively entitled to costs, the Defendant had engaged in conduct that should carry costs consequences.

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