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CIVIL PROCEDURE - Courts - Jurisdiction - Statutory jurisdiction

Wednesday, April 25, 2018 @ 8:35 AM  


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Application by Akpe for an extension of time to file a notice of appeal from an order of the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission (Commission) that denied his appeal from an order of the Director of Residential Property (Director) made under the Rental of Residential Property Act. The Director had found that Akpe’s landlord was entitled to retain his security deposit upon termination of his tenancy. Akpe appealed from the Director's decision to the Commission only on the question of whether he was a lessee and therefore subject to the order of the Director. The Rental of Residential Property Act and the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission Act both provided for a right of appeal from Commission decisions. The Commission requested the Court of Appeal to clarify whether the Court of Appeal or the Supreme Court had jurisdiction to adjudicate on an appeal from a Commission order made pursuant to the Rental of Residential Property Act. This required the Court of Appeal to determine whether s. 26(2) of the Rental of Residential Property Act or s. 13(1) of the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission Act applied.

HELD: Application dismissed. The statutory right of appeal of a Commission order made pursuant to the Rental of Residential Properties Act was to the Supreme Court of Prince Edward Island. The Court of Appeal did not have jurisdiction to hear such an appeal. The specific legislation prevailed over the general legislation. Section 26(2) of the Rental of Residential Property Act was the specific provision that applied to appeals under that Act, including the appeal the applicant now wished to pursue. The statutory right of appeal granted by the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission Act in s. 13(1) was general in scope. It provided a right of appeal to the Court of Appeal from decisions and orders made by the Commission relating to a variety of matters. Accordingly, the Court ruled that Akpe’s application for an extension of time to file an appeal was to be removed from the Court of Appeal to the Supreme Court as having been effectively filed there.

Akpe v. Prince Edward Island (Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission), [2018] P.E.I.J. No. 10, Prince Edward Island Court of Appeal, D.H. Jenkins C.J.P.E.I., M.M. Murphy and J.K. Mitchell JJ.A., March 27, 2018. Digest No. TLD-April232018006