MALIG v KAUR, 2018 ABCA 435

Greckol JA

14.5: Appeals only with permission

Case Summary

The Plaintiff was awarded damages after being attacked by a dog in the backyard of a home rented out by the Defendant under occupier’s liability. The Plaintiff applied for pre-judgment interest on the damages award, which the Trial Judge denied on the basis of the length of time that it took to prosecute the Action.

Both parties applied for permission to Appeal under Rule 14.5(1)(g), which governs Appeals of Decisions where the amount in controversy is less than $25,000. The Plaintiff sought permission to Appeal the denial of pre-judgment interest, while the Defendant sought both an extension of time and permission to Appeal the merits of the Decision finding her liable.

The test for permission to Appeal under Rule 14.5(1)(g) was stated in Willier v McGurk (2015 ABCA 299), and requires a reasonable prospect of success on Appeal having regard to the applicable standard of review; and an issue of law or jurisdiction of importance to the public.

On this basis, the Court found that Her Ladyship’s review of the Trial Judge’s Decision did not reveal an extricable legal error on the question of the Defendant’s liability as an occupier. Additionally, the Appeal that the Defendant sought to raise did not raise an issue of law that is of general importance to the public. The Court denied the Defendant’s Application for leave to Appeal, but granted the Defendant’s Application for an extension of time.

The Court also granted leave for the Plaintiff’s Appeal on two pre-determined questions, being (i) whether the Trial Judge erred in her interpretation of s. 2 of the Judgment Interest Act, RSA 2000, C J-1, and whether the Trial Judge erred in denying an award of pre-judgment interest without hearing submissions.

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