1.2: Purpose and intention of these rules
9.13: Re-opening case
10.29: General rule for payment of litigation costs
10.30: When costs award may be made
10.31: Court-ordered costs award
14.59: Formal offers to settle

Case Summary

Justice Mandziuk dealt with a hearing on Costs arising from His Lordship’s Decision in Woodbridge Homes Inc v Andrews, 2019 ABQB 585 (the “Decision”). The parties sought a ruling as to Costs and interest to be applied to the Decision. Justice Mandziuk had granted the Plaintiff Judgment against the Defendant in the amount of $46,490.60. While His Lordship did not expressly award statutory Judgment interest in the Decision, Justice Mandziuk did rule that the parties would each bear their own Costs, except for $1,000 that was to be paid to the Defendant by the Plaintiff due to late document disclosure.

A few weeks before the Trial of the Action, the Defendant provided a Calderbank Offer to the Plaintiff in the amount of $50,000. The Plaintiff argued that this was irrelevant as Justice Mandziuk was functus officio with respect to the issue of Costs because the Appeal period had expired and a determination on Costs was already rendered in the Decision. Mandziuk J. addressed the concerns raised as to whether the Decision rendered His Lordship functus officio on the issues of interest and Costs. Specifically, His Lordship addressed whether the existence of the Calderbank Offer allowed the Court to revisit an earlier direction as to Costs.

Justice Mandziuk reviewed Rule 9.13 which allows a Judge broad discretion to vary a Judgment until the Judgment is entered and, as such, the Court is not functus officio in these circumstances. Turning to the Calderbank Offer, His Lordship noted the broad discretion given to the Court on the issue of Costs under Rules 10.29, 10.30, and 10.31. Justice Mandziuk found that while Calderbank Offers are persuasive and consistent with the Foundational Rule 1.2, they are not binding in the same manner as Formal Offers made under Rule 14.59.

Justice Mandziuk awarded interest pursuant to the Judgment Interest Act, RSA 2000 c J-1 and re-affirmed that there would be no Costs awarded given the mixed success of the parties at Trial. His Lordship’s discretion was informed, but not fettered, by the existence of a Calderbank Offer.

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