Civil Procedure Rules of Nova Scotia  
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Part 8 - Counsel, Parties, and Claims

Rule 33 - Counsel

Scope of Rule 33
33.01 (1) A lawyer may become counsel of record, and be removed as counsel of record, in accordance with this Rule.
  (2) A party who replaces counsel, or discharges counsel and acts on their own, must comply with this Rule.
       
Counsel of record
33.02 (1) A lawyer becomes counsel of record for a person by signing and filing one of the following, or by representing to the court that the lawyer acts for the person in a proceeding without stating that the retention is limited:
   
(a)
the notice by which the party starts, defends, contests, or responds to a proceeding, or seeks to become a party;
   
(b)
a notice of new counsel;
   
(c)
a court document after a party who had been acting on their own retains the counsel.
  (2) Counsel may authorize another lawyer entitled to represent parties before the court to substitute for counsel.
  (3) One counsel may start a proceeding on behalf of more than one person.
  (4) Two or more counsel may start a proceeding on behalf of different parties by each signing the originating document, the statement of claim in the case of an action, and a statement showing the party on whose behalf each counsel is signing.
       
Ceasing to be counsel of record
33.03   A lawyer ceases to be counsel of record when one of the following events occurs:
   
(a)
the proceeding concludes;
   
(b)
the lawyer is discharged and new counsel files a notice of new counsel under Rule 33.06;
   
(c)
the lawyer is discharged, the party files a notice of intention to act on one’s own under Rule 33.07, and no trial or hearing is scheduled;
   
(d)
the lawyer is discharged when a trial or hearing is scheduled, no notice of new counsel is filed, and a judge removes the lawyer as counsel of record under Rule 33.10;
   
(e)
the lawyer finds it necessary to withdraw from being counsel, and a judge removes the lawyer under Rule 33.11.
       
Counsel for a non-party
33.04   Counsel who represents a person who is not a party but is entitled, or is seeking to become entitled, to be heard in a proceeding must notify the parties and the court of the representation as soon as is possible.
       
Discharge of counsel
33.05 (1) A party who discharges counsel and retains new counsel must, through the new counsel, immediately file a notice of new counsel.
  (2) A party who discharges counsel and acts on their own must file a notice of intention to act on one’s own.
  (3) The designated address for delivery of documents to a party does not change until the notice of change of solicitor, or the notice of intention to act on one’s own, is filed.
       
Change of counsel
33.06 (1) Counsel replacing the counsel of record, or taking over for a party who was acting on their own, must file a notice of new counsel immediately.
  (2) A notice of new counsel must contain the standard heading, be entitled “Notice of New Counsel”, be signed by the new counsel, and include all of the following:
   
(a)
the name of the party represented;
   
(b)
the name of the former counsel, if counsel is replaced;
   
(c)
the name of the new counsel;
   
(d)
a designation of a new address for delivery of documents to the party;
   
(e)
an acknowledgement of the effect of delivery to the designated address and a statement that further contact information is available from the prothonotary.
  (3) The new counsel must also provide the prothonotary with information for communicating with the new counsel, such as a telephone number, fax number and e-mail address.
  (4) The notice of new counsel may be in Form 33.06.
  (5) New counsel must deliver a copy of the notice to the former counsel, and to each party entitled to notice in the proceeding.
       
Party acting on own after discharging counsel
33.07 (1) A party who discharges counsel and wishes to act on their own must attend the prothonotary’s office to file a notice of intention to act on one’s own, unless the prothonotary directs in writing that a personal attendance is not required.
  (2) The notice of intention to act on one’s own must contain the standard heading, be entitled “Notice of Intention to Act on One’s Own”, be signed by the party, and include all of the following:
   
(a)
a statement indicating that the former counsel has been discharged;
   
(b)
the date of the discharge;
   
(c)
a statement that the party has decided to act on their own;
   
(d)
an acknowledgement that the party must personally deliver the notice to the prothonotary;
   
(e)
a designation of a new address for delivery of documents for the party;
   
(f)
an acknowledgement of the effect of delivery to the designated address and a statement that further contact information is available from the prothonotary.
  (3) The party must also provide the prothonotary with information for communicating with the party, such as a telephone number, fax number, and e-mail address.
  (4) The notice of intention to act on one’s own may be in Form 33.07.
  (5) The party must immediately deliver a copy of the notice to the former counsel, and to each party entitled to notice in the proceeding.
       
Information provided by prothonotary
33.08   The prothonotary must, before accepting for filing a notice of intention to act on one’s own, provide the information required to be provided by the prothonotary under Rule 34.06, of Rule 34 - Acting on One’s Own.
       
Counsel for a limited purpose
33.09 (1) A judge may permit a lawyer to act as counsel for a limited purpose on behalf of a party who otherwise acts on their own.
  (2) A judge may require a party who acts on their own to retain counsel for a limited purpose, such as for discovery or cross-examination of a witness who may suffer serious emotional harm if required to communicate directly with the party.
       
Duty of discharged counsel
33.10 (1) A lawyer who is discharged by a party the lawyer represented as counsel must complete all tasks the lawyer undertook to perform for the court, or was directed to perform for the court, such as to draft and submit a form of order.
  (2) A lawyer who is discharged after a time and date have been appointed for the trial of an action or the hearing of an application, proceeding for judicial review, appeal, or motion must personally appear before the judge assigned to preside at the trial or hearing to be removed as counsel of record, unless a notice of new counsel is filed or the judge permits otherwise.
  (3) If a judge has not been assigned, or the assigned judge is unavailable, the lawyer may appear before any judge.
       
Withdrawal of counsel
33.11 (1) Counsel who finds it necessary to withdraw must make a motion to be removed as counsel of record.
  (2) Counsel who makes a motion for an order to be removed as counsel of record must deliver the notice of motion to the party counsel represents or represented, unless a judge orders otherwise.
       
New designated address for delivery
33.12   A lawyer who is discharged as counsel or withdraws, and whose address is the address designated for delivery to the party the lawyer represented, may make a motion for an order designating a new address for delivery.
       

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NOTICE AND PLACE OF PROCEEDING

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ACTING ON ONE'S OWN >>