The importance of having a lawyer to assist litigants in Supreme Court as been reaffirmed by the Court of Appeal. In this barking dog nuisance case the appellant had up to 80 dogs on her property as part of a dog rescue business. Neighbours complained and the court ordered a permanent prohibitive injunction including limiting the dogs to only 2 personal pets. the Court of Appeal pointed out:

[23]  Ms. C represented herself on this application, which made it more difficult to determine whether this appeal had any merit…

[25]  It may be that by the time this appeal is perfected, one of these arguments will be seen to have some merit, although without the assistance of counsel I consider that most unlikely…(Angerer v. Cuthbert,2018 YKCA 1)

Interestingly, in a private nuisance case the claimant must satisfy a two-part test. First, they must establish, on a balance of probabilities, that the interference amounts to more than a slight annoyance or trifling interference, and one that materially interferes with their ordinary comfort or convenience. Second, they must establish that the interference is unreasonable. Thus, the interference must be both substantial and unreasonable.

In the second part of the test the list of circumstances or factors which courts have considered in determining reasonableness is not closed, but includes: the utility of the defendant’s conduct;  the severity of the interference;  the frequency of the interference;  the duration of the interference;  the sensitivity of the plaintiffs;  the character of the neighbourhood; and  carelessness of the defendant (Angerer v. Cuthbert,2017 YKSC 54)

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