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Table of Contents - Application Records and Appeal Books


Members of the Profession


The Honourable John D. Richard
Chief Justice, Federal Court of Appeal


July 25, 2007


Practice direction - Table of Contents – Application Records and Appeal Books

Below is a practice direction. It is intended to address a situation that arises most commonly in applications for judicial review relating to the Canada Pension Plan, the Employment Insurance Act, and decisions of the Canadian International Trade Tribunal. However, the practice direction is not limited to cases of that nature.

"John D. Richard"
Chief Justice



In the Federal Court of Appeal, appeals and judicial review applications are heard on the basis of a documentary record. The rules governing the contents of the record are Rule 344 for appeals (appeal book), and Rule 309 for applications for judicial review (application record).

Both rules require a table of contents. Both rules also require that the pages of the record be consecutively numbered. Those two requirements are intended to work together so that when the judges are preparing for the hearing, and during oral argument, it is easy to find the relevant documents when they are needed.

There have been cases in which the table of contents does not contain enough detail to perform a useful function. Typically, this problem arises when the record consists mainly of the record of the court or tribunal whose decision is being reviewed, which may consist of a large number of documents and hundreds of pages. Often the entire record is attached to an affidavit as a single exhibit. It is not helpful in such a case if the table of contents simply shows that the record contains the record or the affidavit.

Therefore, all parties are directed to ensure that when an appeal book or application record includes all or part of the tribunal record, or an affidavit with attachments, the table of contents should contain an entry for each document in the record and each attachment.

The entry should describe each document and each attachment in sufficient detail to permit the judge and counsel to use it as a means of cross-referencing points in the written and oral argument.