About the BC Superior Courts
There are three levels of court in British Columbia, the Provincial Court, the Supreme Court, and the Court of Appeal. The BC Superior Courts consist of the BC Court of Appeal and the BC Supreme Court. Appeals from the Court of Appeal go to the Supreme Court of Canada, which is located in Ottawa. The Federal Court of Appeal, Federal Court, and Tax Court of Canada also have jurisdiction in British Columbia. For more about these courts, please see their websites:
The Court of Appeal hears appeals from the Supreme Court of British Columbia in all matters and from the Provincial Court in some criminal matters. The Court of Appeal also hears reviews and appeals from some provincial administrative boards and tribunals.
The Supreme Court is the province's superior trial court. It is a court of general and inherent jurisdiction, which means that it can hear any type of case, civil or criminal. It also hears most appeals from the Provincial Court, in both civil and criminal cases.
The Provincial Court is also a trial court, but its jurisdiction is limited in various ways, as set out in statutes such as the Criminal Code and the Small Claims Act. For more about the Provincial Court, see its website.
Judicial Law Clerk Program
The Judicial Law Clerk Program at the BC Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of British Columbia was established in 1973. The original aim of the Program was to improve the quality of advocacy in British Columbia. Since its inception, the Judicial Law Clerk Program has provided newly graduated law students a privileged opportunity to observe the judicial system from a unique vantage point. Alumni of the Judicial Law Clerk Program have gone on to careers in private practice, public service and business. In addition, a number of former judicial law clerks are members of the BC Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court of British Columbia and the Provincial Court of British Columbia.