This portal provides information and instructions on what is expected of you when you bring your own application for leave to appeal or when you have been named as a respondent on an application for leave to appeal. An application for leave to appeal is a document by which a party requests leave to be heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in an appeal from a judgment of a court of appeal.
The mandate of the Supreme Court of Canada is to deal with important issues of law that are of interest and importance across the country or issues it feels are of such a nature or significance as to warrant decision by it. This guides the Court in deciding which applications for leave to appeal will be successful. The Court will not grant leave to appeal from a judgment simply because the court of appeal made an error.
As many as 600 leave applications are reviewed very carefully each year by a panel of three judges who decide whether a case should be granted leave to appeal or not. Reasons for their decision are never given. The Court, however, only grants approximately 80 applications for leave to appeal a year, which represents 10 to 12% of all applications for leave to appeal filed.
If the Court denies your application for leave to appeal, it is not expressing an opinion as to whether in its view the lower courts were right or wrong, but only that it has concluded that the case does not raise a question of sufficient public importance to be decided by the Court.
Please visit the Resources for self-represented litigants for more information and instructions.