BC to Proceed with Court Expansions Across the Fraser Valley

BC to Proceed with Court Expansions Across the Fraser Valley

Vancouver court improvementsAsk any Vancouver legal professional and they’ll tell you lengthy court system delays are the norm when it comes to court and civil cases across the Lower Fraser Valley. In addition, some courthouses such as the Abbotsford courthouse experience serious problems including overcrowding, not enough meeting space, backdated acoustics, not enough judge’s chambers, and even asbestos and vermin infestation.

In response, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Suzanne Anton, was happy to announce that the provincial government plans to develop court services by, “We are looking for the most efficient and economical ways to increase access to justice in the Lower Fraser Valley region and this plan provides a roadmap to help make that happen. The five municipalities in this region have worked hard to come up with a strategy that will improve court operations in the Lower Fraser Valley for decades to come.”

Projects to be completed by 2018:

  • Construct a new Abbotsford courthouse with five Supreme and nine Provincial courtrooms.
  • Add five Provincial courtrooms to the Surrey Provincial courthouse and update their technological infrastructure

Long-term projects to be considered:

  • A new Langley courthouse including five Provincial courtrooms
  • Adding an additional three Provincial courtrooms to Surrey’s courthouse
  • Adding two additional Provincial courtrooms to Chilliwack’s courthouse

Currently, Provincial Court deals with the majority of criminal, family, small claims, civic and traffic cases. The proposed plan indicates that the Lower Fraser Valley is in need of 32 courtrooms but currently has only 22. The Supreme Court hears serious family, civil and criminal cases and these matters are currently held only in Vancouver, New Westminster and Chilliwack.

The plan will now be presented to the government to the government for future funding approval. Overall, the addition of the new proposed courtrooms and courthouses would improve access and reduce wait times. This will be welcome news to legal professionals and BC residents.

 

About Samantha Collier

Samantha Collier is a well-respected social media specialist in the Canadian legal realm. An experienced practitioner of online social networking, Samantha also has experience working in-house in business development for a national IP firm, but has worked in marketing and client acquisition for over 13 years.

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