February 21, 2018
Thibault, Levesque, Savard
Appeal from a judgment of the Superior Court dismissing an action in nullity. Dismissed.
The appellant challenged the constitutional validity of ss. 84 to 90 of the Rules of practice of the Superior Court of Québec in civil matters (CQLR, c. C-25.01, r. 4), under which he was declared a vexatious litigant.
The declaration of quarrelsomeness results from abusive conduct by a litigant. The constitutional right guaranteeing access to courts does not protect such conduct. Moreover, s. 23 of the Charter of human rights and freedoms (CQLR, c. C-12) adds nothing to the debate, as it is procedural in nature. Furthermore, while the right to be heard is indeed a fundamental principle, it nevertheless does not confer the right to a viva voce hearing in all circumstances. The decision-making process by which a litigant may be authorized to institute an action after a written application to this effect is sufficient in this respect. Finally, the public registry of quarrelsome litigants is also valid. This registry, which is presented in the form of a search engine, does not make judgments public or accessible when they were not already so; they were already public, like all other judgments of the Quebec courts.
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