Parties to an appeal can represent themselves before the Tribunal.
Parties also have the right to name a representative (such as a friend, family member, lawyer or other professional) at any time during the appeal. To do so, parties must complete and sign the Authorization to disclose (PDF, 288 KB) form. This form gives the representative permission to act on the party’s behalf. Once a representative is named, the Tribunal will communicate and share information with the representative. It is the representative’s responsibility to share all information related to the appeal with the party who has engaged the representative. Whether represented or not, all parties will receive the Notice of Hearing and the Tribunal’s decision directly from the Tribunal.
If a party decides to change their representative or to no longer use a representative, the party must complete and send a revised Authorization to disclose form to the Tribunal as soon as possible.
Parties are responsible for all costs related to representation.
Some parties may qualify for Legal Aid services or for a free consultation with a lawyer. Local or national organizations may also advise parties. The Tribunal cannot provide any legal advice or recommend a representative.
Role of a representative
A representative can help throughout the appeal by preparing or obtaining documentation in support of the appeal, preparing the Notice of Appeal, questioning witnesses at the hearing and making submissions. A representative may:
- represent a party for the entire appeal, including the hearing;
- help a party until the hearing and the party attends the hearing alone; or
- represent a party at the hearing whereas it is the party who has managed the appeal until then.
A witness is a person who provides evidence to the Tribunal. A representative is not normally a witness.
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