2019 Judicial Compensation Commission

There is a constitutional obligation on governments to set compensation for provincial court judges and judicial justices through an independent, objective and effective commission process.

In accordance with this obligation, the provincial Judicial Compensation Act, S.B.C. 2003, c. 59 (“Act”) requires the appointment of an independent commission every three years to consider and report on all matters respecting the remuneration, allowances and benefits of provincial court judges and judicial justices. In 2015, the Act was amended to merge the provincial court judges and the judicial justices compensation commissions into a single Judicial Compensation Commission. The 2016 Judicial Compensation Commission was the first commission after this legislative change.

The 2019 Judicial Compensation Commission will review the compensation (salaries and benefits) for provincial court judges and judicial justices for the period of April 1, 2020, to March 31, 2023 and must deliver a preliminary report with recommendations to the Attorney General and Chief Judge no later than October 1, 2019. This report will be the final report if the Minister and/or Chief Judge do not apply to the Commission for clarification of a matter in the preliminary report or for clarification of a matter not addressed in the preliminary report. If either the Minister or the Chief Judge do ask for clarification, then the Commission’s final report to the Attorney General is due no later than October 30, 2019.

After receiving the final report, the Attorney General must table the Commission’s final report in the Legislative Assembly within seven sitting days.

Commission Members

The following Commissioners are appointed to the 2019 Judicial Compensation Commission:

  • The Honourable Thomas Cromwell, C.C. (Chair)
  • Vern Blair
  • Michael Marchbank
  • Robin N. McFee, Q.C.
  • Lisa Southern

The Commission Secretary is Maia Tsurumi.

Commission Hearings and Recommendations

The Judicial Compensation Act (s. 5) stipulates that the Commission must be guided by the need to provide reasonable compensation for judges and judicial justices, taking into account all of the following:

  • The need to maintain a strong court by attracting highly qualified applicants
  • Changes, if any, to the jurisdiction of Judges or Judicial Justices
  • Compensation provided in respect of similar judicial positions in Canada, having regard to the differences between those jurisdictions and B.C.
  • Changes in the compensation of others paid by provincial public funds in B.C.
  • The generally accepted current and expected economic conditions in B.C., and
  • The current and expected financial position of the government over the three fiscal years covered by the report

The Act (in sub-section 5(5.2) also states that the Commission may consider factors it considers relevant that are not set out in subsection 5(5), but if it relies on another factor, the report of the commission must explain the relevance of the factor.


Learn More

Questions regarding the 2019 Judicial Compensation Commission process
Maia Tsurumi, Commission Secretary at: mtsurumi@legalanalysis.ca

Provincial Court of British Columbia
See the Provincial Court of British Columbia website.