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A Complete Step-by-step Guide on How to Appeal ESA Orders

There are 3 steps to the appeals process:

  1. Appeal before the Director
  2. Appeal before the Review Panel
  3. Divisional Court

For further information on the guidelines and rules for hearings and filing an appeal, please click on the links below:

Step One: Appeal before the Director

There are 4 steps to the Appeal before the Director:Appeal before the Director

(i) Order/Notice Served to Party

Appeals before the Director may be requested to the Director of Appeals within 15 days (holidays and weekends not included) after being served with an ESA Order.

(ii) Submitting a Notice of Appeal

When submitting a Notice of Appeal before the Director, the following items must be included:

  • Notice of Appeal—Request for Review of ESA Order form, with all sections complete and signed within 15 days (holidays and weekends not included) of an Order being issued or the succeeding 15 days (holidays and weekends not included) of the non-issuance of an Order;
  • A copy of the Order or Request for an Order to be reviewed; and
  • Written submission and all supporting documentation

Please remember to consult the checklist before filing an appeal.

Please note:  When a review of an ESA Order has been granted by the Director of Appeals, the Order is ‘stayed’ pending the outcome of the review with the exception of points (1) and (2) below. The Director, upon receiving the Request for Review, may require compliance with the Order that is under review without a hearing:

  1. Where there is an immediate threat to public safety or the safety of any person; and
  2. Will require the electrical installation that is under review, not to be concealed or rendered inaccessible until it conforms to the Electrical Safety Code or Electrical Distribution Safety Regulation.

(iii) Hearing before the Director

The Director will review all information submitted to the Director of Appeals by the appellant in their Notice of Appeal application and any additional information submitted.

The Director will review this information and then render a decision.

There are three formats in which a hearing may be held: oral, electronic and written (or any combination of the three).

(iv) Decision

A written copy of the Director’s decision shall be served either by:

  • Registered mail;
  • In person;
  • Fax; or
  • Any other form of electronic transmission providing there is a record that the notice has been sent.
Step Two: Appeal before the Review Panel

A person may within 15 days (holidays and weekends not included) of receiving notice of the Director’s decision, file a Notice of Appeal before the Review Panel with ESA’s Director of Appeals.

There are 5 steps to the Appeal before the Review Panel:

Appeal

(i) Submitting a Notice of Appeal

When submitting a Notice of Appeal before the Review Panel, the following items must be included:

  • Notice of Appeal before the Review Panel application formwith all sections complete and signed;
  • Written submission and all documentation;
  • A copy of the Director’s decision;
  • Written confirmation of legal representation (if applicable).
  • A copy of the Notice or Order being appealed;
  • Payment of $113 including HST (non-refundable filing fee), payable to the "Electrical Safety Authority"

Please remember to consult the checklist before filing an appeal.

Please note:  When a review of an ESA Order has been granted by the Director of Appeals, the Order is ‘stayed’ pending the outcome of the review, with the exception of points (1) and (2) below. The Review Panel, upon receiving the Request for Review, may require compliance with the Order that is under review without a hearing:

  1. Where there is an immediate threat to public safety or the safety of any person; and
  2. Will require the electrical installation that is under review, not to be concealed or rendered inaccessible until it conforms to the Electrical Safety Code, Product Safety or Electrical Distribution Safety Regulation.

 

(ii) Setting up a Review Panel Hearing

The Director of Appeals ensures that the application form is complete and must decide if the application is accepted or rejected.

Once the appeal is accepted, the Director of Appeals will arrange the hearing date, location, and time, and select up to three members from the Review Panel Roster to make up the Review Panel conducting the hearing.

There are three formats in which a hearing may be held: oral, electronic and written (or any combination of the three).

The standard hearing format for an Appeal before the Review Panel is an oral hearing conducted in person.

(iii) Disclosure

The Director of Appeals will require Notice and Consent from all parties, and will request that all parties provide disclosure to the other party. Disclosure needs to be provided to the Director of Appeals at least 5 days (holidays and weekends not included) before the scheduled hearing before the Review Panel.

The Director of Appeals will provide all parties with copies of the disclosure.

(iv) During the Hearing

Hearing Room

Hearing Room

Hearings are held in large rooms, rather than formal court rooms. Up to 3 members of the Review Panel Roster will form a Review Panel. The Review Panel will sit at the front, with the parties to the case and their representatives sitting opposite on the front row of chairs with others behind.

The appellant appears before the Review Panel. Legal Counsel to the Review Panel is present to ensure that the appropriate procedures are carried out during the hearing.

Please note that this process is generally open to individuals wishing to attend the hearing as observers. However, either the Director or the appellant may at their discretion request a closed hearing.

Hearing Procedure

  1. Each party gives their opening statements:
    • The opening statement gives the full details and factual information genuine to the issue at hand to give an exact nature of the case.
    • The Appellant proceeds first with their evidence and may call on witnesses:
      • Evidence is information provided to make more or less probable the existence or non-existence of a fact or situation that must be proved.
    • All witnesses are cross-examined under oath by affirmation
      • The Review Panel members can ask questions to the witnesses at any time while the witness is testifying.
    • The Legal Counsel to the Director presents their evidence and may call on witnesses. 
    • Once all evidence has been presented, the appellant gives their closing arguments, followed by the Legal Counsel for the Director.
    • The hearing then closes.

(V) After the Hearing

Following the hearing, the Review Panel members meet in an executive session, with their legal counsel present, to discuss the appeal and come to a decision. 

Once a decision has been reached, the Review Panel drafts a report on the decision. The draft is circulated to the Review Panel members for further input. 

When the report on the decision has been finalized, the legal counsel sends it to the Director of Appeals. The Director of Appeals sends the decision to all parties. Once all parties have received the decision, the decision will be posted on the Review Panel Decisions section of ESA’s website.

A decision will be sent within 5 days (holidays and weekends not included) following the conclusion of the proceeding.

Step Three: Divisional Court

Any party to a proceeding before the Review Panel may choose to appeal the decision of the Review Panel and file an appeal with Divisional Court.  For more information on how to file a Notice of Appeal with the Divisional Court by visiting the Ontario Superior Court of Justice website.

Please note that an appeal to Divisional Court will not be accepted if the reason for the appeal is a question of fact alone.