A landowner in Nova Scotia challenged the validity of the expropriation of his land. The challenge was unsuccessful and the landowner was ordered by the NS Supreme Court to pay costs of the challenge to the expropriating authority. The Court disagreed with the landowner that the costs should be decided under the Expropriation Act as costs related to asserting a claim for compensation (in which case there is no provision for the landowner to pay the expropriating authority costs, and it may be that the landowner would be entitled to costs when compensation is decided). The landowner appealed the decision on costs to the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal.
The Court of Appeal ruled that there is a distinction between compensation proceedings under expropriation legislation and court proceedings to challenge the validity of the expropriation itself. Having determined that the Supreme Court judge was not wrong to have applied the normal costs rules under the Civil Procedure Rules, the Court of Appeal upheld the lower court decision.
Read the decision at: Higgins v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General).