Civil Resolution Tribunal to hear small claims up to $5000

The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) will start taking civil claims (up to $5000) on June 1st.  On June 1st as well, the monetary limit for Small Claims Court will be raised up to $35,000 from the present $25,000.

  • All claims over $5000 up to $35,000 will go to Small Claims Court.
  • Over $35,000 the claims go to BC Supreme Court, unless the claimant is willing to ‘waive the excess’ and fit within the $35,000 limit.
  • All claims of $5,000 or less will go to the Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT), unless the CRT does not have jurisdiction because of one of the following exceptions:

 

  1. when the CRT does not have legal authority to deal with the subject matter of a claim;
  2. when a judge orders that a matter proceed in Provincial Court instead of the CRT;
  3. where one of the parties files a notice of objection to a CRT decision; or
  4. where no objection to a CRT order is filed, and a party asks to have the order enforced in Provincial Court;

The CRT does not have legal authority to deal with:

  • a claim for libel, slander or malicious prosecution
  • a claim for or against the government
  • a claim excluded from the authority of the CRT by regulations (there are no such exclusions now)
  • a constitutional question (any question requiring notice under section 8 of the Constitutional Question Act)
  • a question of whether there is a conflict between the Human Rights Code and another law.

For further clarification, the Small Claims Court does not have legal authority to deal with:

  • an interest in land
  • personal property security
  • bankruptcies
  • trademarks
  • wills and estates
  • libel and slander
  • malicious prosecution
  • residential tenancy (though Residential Tenancy Branch orders under the Residential Tenancy Act may be enforced in Provincial Court), and
  • almost all builders’ lien matters.

In addition, the federal government cannot be sued in Provincial Court.

Further information on the changes to the Small Claims Court Rules and procedures starting June 1st are available here: http://provincialcourt.bc.ca/enews/enews-20-03-2017

For more information about the CRT see our CRT information page and/or the CRT website.