How to Prepare for your Appeal
The Tribunal is
committed to providing an independent, community-based appeal process that is
timely, accessible and respectful.
Support at Your Hearing
You can ask a family
member, friend, or an advocate to come with you to the hearing or to help you
prepare written information for the panel. If you need to find an
advocate, visit PovNet’s website at www.povnet.org for a listing of advocacy agencies in or near
You may bring an
interpreter. If required, the Tribunal will find an interpreter for you.
If you want your advocate
or a family member to communicate with the Tribunal on your behalf or receive information
about your appeal, you will need to complete and return a Release of
Information form. This ensures that you have control over who receives your
Preparing for Your Hearing
The Tribunal will
provide you with a copy of the appeal record. To help you prepare:
- Review the ministry’s reconsideration decision as it tells you the
reasons why you were denied or found ineligible. Be prepared to tell the
panel why you disagree with that decision.
- Consider whether additional evidence would help your case. The panel can only admit oral and written evidence that is in support of the information and records that were before the ministry when the reconsideration decision was made.
- Think about whether a witness would help your case. Witnesses will
be asked to remain outside the hearing room until asked to testify. After
testifying, they will be asked to leave unless you request they remain. If
they remain, they cannot provide further testimony.
- Review the sections of the acts or regulations that apply to your
- Read prior panel decisions. These decisions won’t be followed by
other panels, however they give you a sense of how the Tribunal dealt with
- Review the Tribunal
Practices & Procedures for information on the appeal process.
- Watch the video clips about the hearing process.
- Obtain copies of appeal forms, such as the Release of Information.
Generally two members
are appointed by the Tribunal Chair to hear your appeal. While the
Tribunal attempts to accommodate your choice of hearing type, the Tribunal
Chair will determine whether your hearing will be held in person, by telephone,
by video conference, or by a combination of these types. For instance, it
is not uncommon for in person hearings to have one member attend by telephone.
You will be informed by
letter of the timelines for giving information to the Tribunal. You will
have seven business days to provide written reasons to support your case;
include any additional information that you want the panel to consider. On
receiving your submission, the Tribunal will forward it to the ministry, who
has seven business days to respond. You will receive a copy of the
The panel will review
the written submissions, determine if any additional evidence is admissible,
and make a decision.
An oral hearing
(in-person, teleconference or video conference) will normally take place within
15 business days after you submit your Notice of Appeal. You will be
notified of the date, time and location of your hearing at least two business
days before the hearing.
Bring your copy of the
appeal record to the hearing. If possible, provide any additional evidence
to the Tribunal prior to your hearing so it can be distributed on your
behalf. Otherwise, bring copies to the hearing.
After Your Hearing
The panel decides
whether the ministry’s decision was:
- Reasonably supported by
the evidence; or
- A reasonable application
of the legislation given your circumstances
The panel will then either agree with (confirm) the ministry’s decision or overturn (rescind) it in your favour.
Generally, you will receive the written decision by mail within 10 business days of the date of your hearing.
How to Find an Advocate
The appeal process is intended to be an informal process that allows the parties an opportunity to make their case through an informal hearing process. If you need assistance with preparing for or presenting your case, you are encouraged to find an advocate.
PovNet provides an online directory of community-based advocates who work to assist people with their administrative law problems. Visit Find An Advocate at povnet.org to determine what resources are available in your community.