Suchocki Accounting Ltd. V. The Queen (May 8, 2018 – 2018 TCC 88, Boyle J.).
Précis: The owner and director of the appellant corporation, Michael Suchocki, moved to act as agent for the corporation. In this decision Justice Boyle affirms the well-understood rule that in the Tax Court a corporation must be represented by counsel in a general procedure matter, not by a non-lawyer agent. He also found that even if he had discretion to permit the appointment of an agent he would not exercise that discretion on the facts in front of him. Thus Mr. Suchocki’s motion was denied with costs in any event of the cause.
Decision: Justice Boyle reiterated the rule that in the Tax Court a corporation must be represented by a lawyer in a general procedure matter:
 Firstly, I agree with the reasons and the decision of Justice Graham in Masa Sushi Japanese Restaurant Inc. v. The Queen, 2017 TCC 239, that the Tax Court of Canada Act does not permit anyone other than a lawyer to represent a corporation in a general procedure matter.
 This is clear from the expressed language of section 17.1 of the Tax Court of Canada Act. Just as the Tax Court could not allow an individual in a general procedure case to be represented by their spouse, child or any other person who may be better equipped than the individual to do that unless they are a lawyer, the Court cannot allow a corporation to be represented in Court by a shareholder, officer, director or any other person who is not a lawyer.
He went further to hold that even if he had discretion to permit a corporation to be represented by a non-lawyer agent he would not exercise that discretion in this particular case:
 There is case law of this Court that helpfully identifies some of the matters to be considered in exercising my discretion in this regard. These are discussed in the decision of Chief Justice Rossiter in White Star Copper Mines Limited v. The Queen, 2007 TCC 669:
1. Whether the corporation can pay for a lawyer: In this case, there is no evidence to suggest that it could not. Indeed, I am told a lawyer has already been spoken with.
2. Whether the proposed representative will be an advocate and a witness in the hearing: Mr. Suchocki can be expected to be the primary witness for the Appellant. The general rule is that a lawyer cannot also be a witness in a proceeding. In many jurisdictions, lawyers are expected to recuse themselves if it becomes necessary for them to give evidence.
3. The complexity of the legal issues and whether it appears the representative will be able to handle them: In this case, the notice of appeal filed is not an acceptable notice of appeal. It does not focus on the relevant facts, legislation and issues in dispute between the parties that are to be decided by the Court. It primarily consists of reasons and advocacy. It is argumentative. It is responsive to something that the Court does not have. It does not inform the Court of the issues to be decided in the appeal, nor is it sufficient to allow the Respondent to reply to it. This alone convinces me that this corporation should be represented by a lawyer in this hearing. Mr. Suchocki’s motion, material and performance this morning reinforced that.
4. Whether the action can proceed in an expeditious manner without a lawyer representing the corporation: The Appellant has already needed a Court order to extend the time within which to file his appeal. Mr. Suchocki did not arrive at Court this morning ready to proceed at the designated time. His motion materials were deficient and he indicates he still has trouble understanding why the Court or the Respondent is having these problems with his materials.
5. Importantly, a non-lawyer being authorized to represent a corporation should only be done in very exceptional circumstances: In this case, the Appellant has not adduced sufficient evidence to convince me that special or exceptional circumstances exist in this particular case.
Technically the corporation could still elect proceed by way of informal procedure appeal without retaining counsel but it would still have to comply with the rules of the Court as to pleadings, etc.:
 In addition, the order will provide that the Appellant has 90 days to file a fresh as amended notice of appeal by counsel. This is to be done on a peremptory basis, which means if the 90 days expire, your appeal will be dismissed, absent extenuating circumstances such as earthquakes and deaths.
 The Respondent will have 60 days from the filing of the fresh as amended notice of appeal to file its reply.
 The application to extend the appeal with respect to 2014 and 2015 is allowed.
 It will be in the fresh as amended notice of appeal that the corporate Appellant will have the right to elect the informal option, and if it does so, that fresh as amended notice of appeal is not required to be filed by a lawyer, but nonetheless must comply with the rules of the Court on pleadings, and that will be on a peremptory basis as well.
Thus the motion was dismissed with costs in any event of the cause.