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IMPORTANT RELEASE - Lifting of the suspension of time limits for civil proceedings

Montreal, on this 20th of October 2020

On March 13, 2020, the Quebec government declared a public health crisis, and a ministerial order for the suspension of the time limits of extinctive prescription,  in terms of forfeiture in civil matters as well as for all civil proceedings was rendered at that time.

This ministerial order was renewed on several consecutives occasions throughout the spring and summer until July 13th, 2020, when the lifting of the suspension of time limits in civil matters was announced by the Chief Justice of Quebec, the honourable Manon Savard, and by the Minister of justice of Quebec, Mr. Simon Jolin-Barrette, who jointly signed a ministerial order to establish the lifting of the suspension of time limits in civil matters commencing  September 1rst, 2020.

The full text of this ministerial order is available through the following link:

« The lifting of the suspension of time limits starting on September 1rst, 2020 represents a return to normal in the justice system. The goal of this suspension of time limits in civil and criminal matters was most notably to safeguard the rights of all citizens within the context of the pandemic. I wish to thank all of the participants in the legal system for their collaboration during the application of these measures, which were meant to be temporary for the duration of the emergency health crisis. » (in-house translation)

Simon Jolin-Barrette, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Quebec

As explained by the Minister, this suspension of time limits was to preserve citizens’ rights during the health crisis.

As such, on September 1rst, 2020, the government has rendered an order to lift the suspension of time limits. Consequently, the legal time limits in which to act before the courts have now restarted.

The time limits affected by this latest order also include the time limits to pursue legal recourse or to contest a legal action, as well as the time limits inscribed in a case protocol for an ongoing case.

Consequently, if you had to act in a legal time limit during the suspension of time limits or if you were wondering whether the lifting of the suspension of time limits applies to your situation, please be advised that we are at your disposal to accompany you, to analyze your situation and to verify whether this lifting of time limits applies to your case.

Please know that access to justice and the defence of our clients’ interests are at the center of our concerns, notably given the challenges linked to the lifting of the suspension of time limits in civil matters and its consequences on substantive and procedural law as pertains to litigants.

We will be monitoring the situation closely in order to better defend your interests in this unusual context.

Your legal team at Dubé Latreille Avocats Inc.

All our efforts aim to continue to offer our clients the best services in these exceptional circumstances.

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