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Legal Assistant Program - Statement of Defence | Assignment 2


In Assignment 1, you were asked to draft the commencing document for the scenario attached below.  When you did that, you were acting as a legal assistant for the plaintiff’s law firm.  You are now going to switch roles, and, in this assignment, you are now the legal assistant for the lawyer representing the defendant.  Re-read the scenario below and daft the Statement of Defence to the Statement of Claim you submitted in the first assignment. 

When drafting your statement of defence, you will be graded on your ability to identify the correct parties to the action, the correct judicial centre and in your ability to correctly refer to the parties.  You will also complete the sections of the document referred to as the "Statement of Facts" and “Remedy Sought”, and you will be graded on telling the story using the language and words you are comfortable with. You are not expected to write like a lawyer, just tell the story using plain English. You must also ensure your sentences do not contain spelling or grammar errors. Completing the whole document provides you practice of how this might actually proceed in a law office.


  1. Read the case scenario attached at the end of this assignment.
  2. Go to the Alberta Courts website locate the Statement of Defence precedent form.  (Note: you can choose either the PDF or word format of the commencing document. I will accept either).
  3. Complete the document based on the facts presented in the scenario. Please see the Rubric/Marking Criteria below for how you will be graded on this assignment.
  4. Refer to the precedent statement of defence on the Alberta Courts website as needed.
  5. Submit your Assignment using the Dropbox area and attach your completed document as an attachment.
  6. If you have any questions, please contact your instructor.

Rubric/Marking Criteria:



Spelling, grammar and ease of reading


Identifying the correct judicial centre


Listing and identifying the correct defendant(s)


Listing and identifying the correct plaintiff(s)


Listing the Address for service and contact information


Completing the body of the Statement of Defence document




Case Scenario

April 24, 2018 was a grey and dreary day in Calgary and Chris Johnson woke up tired and hung over.   He had been out with a group of friends celebrating the end of exams at Rocky Mountain College.  Chris was in the final year of the college’s Legal Assistant Program and he and some classmates went for dinner and then to some clubs.  After the clubs closed two of his friends, Parvinder Luddu and Leah Paul, came home with Chris to keep celebrating.  He had had a lot to drink.

Chris woke up only having had two hours of sleep, but he had to get up to get to his job.  Chris was a waiter at Smithy’s Restaurant Ltd.  He loved his job as it was totally different from school and it helped him pay his way through school.  He was about to begin a practicum in a few weeks and would continue to work nights and weekends during the practicum.  Sunday was the busiest day of the week at Smithy’s as they were well known for their great brunch. 

Chris got to the train station and saw that on the notice board that the train was scheduled to arrive in three minutes.  He thought he had enough time to run to the Jim Torton’s just across from the train platform for a coffee so he ran into the store and ordered an extra-large double double.

Rubric/Marking Criteria

As Chris was waiting for his coffee his phone dinged and he looked at it to see a message on his phone from his girlfriend Praveena telling him she needed to know the password for his Netflix account immediately.  Chris began to text her back just as he got his coffee but as he did, he turned around to see the train arrive at the platform.  Chris ran as fast as he could out the door of the restaurant with his coffee in one hand and his cellphone in the other.  He was texting as he ran onto the platform and reached to push the button to open the door of the train, but it was already opening.  At that point Chris was running as fast as he could when he hit something solid.

Olive Zhang was a passenger on the train that arrived at the platform.  She was a 78-year-old and was on the train with her 81-year-old husband Zhang Wei – who usually went by his Western name Bob. They were the only passengers in the car.  Olive and Bob lived in Edmonton and they had driven to Calgary the night before and checked into a hotel near the airport because it was a better deal than the downtown hotels. They were on the train to visit their grandson who had just gotten engaged and they wanted to meet their future daughter in law.

As the train pulled into the platform Olive got up from her seat and pushed the button to open the door.  Her husband was right behind her.  Olive took one step out of the train and the next thing she knew she was screaming and on the ground.  In his hurry to get onto the train, Chris had run full speed into Olive, knocking her to the ground.

Zhang Wei did not see what happened to Olive.  All he saw was Chris standing over Olive looking shocked.  Chris had a crumpled Tim Horton’s coffee cup in one hand, a cell phone in his other hand and blood over jacket.  When Zhang looked down at Olive, he saw she was covered in coffee, her face and hands turning red from the burning hot liquid. Olive’s mouth was bleeding and he saw that Olive’s leg was bent at a funny angle.

Saania Parvati was the driver of the train that Olive were on and just a few seconds after the train came to a stop, she heard the emergency bell ring.  The system in her car told her the emergency button had beeng pushed from the lead car.  She looked behind her and saw someone standing in the door of the train and then looked out to see Olive on the ground.  She called for an ambulance on her radio and then went to see if she could help.

Case Scenario

When Saania got to Olive she heard Olive crying.  By now it was obvious to her that Olive had been burned by something.  Blisters were starting to form on her face and hands.  Her mouth was bloodied, and her leg was bent at a funny angle.

She heard Bob angrily yelling at a young man who had blood on his face and a crumpled coffee cup and phone in his hands.  Bob was yelling at the man calling him stupid and saying, “you hurt my wife, you weren’t paying attention”.

The young man – no one knew his name yet, but it was Chris - told Saania to get back into the train and begin to drive.  He told her he had to get to work immediately or he’d be late.  Saania told him she wasn’t going anywhere until the ambulance came for Olive.  She then told him he wasn’t going to be allowed on the train anyway because he had blood on his face and that no one who had bodily fluids on them was allowed on the train.  It was then that Chris realized he had Olive’s blood on his face and he vaguely remembered that as he reached to open the train door that Olive’s face hit his shoulder pretty hard.

Chris also began to sense a burning sensation on his left hands and fingers.  He looked down to see the skin on his hands and fingers beginning to blister.

After a few minutes an ambulance arrived. Sean Payton and Monica Williams were the paramedics that attended the scene.    Monica treated Olive and found that she lost a tooth, she was bleeding from her gums, she was suffering from second degree burns and she had broken her left leg just above the ankle.  This was all later confirmed by doctors at the hospital.  Olive stayed two days at the hospital and spent eight weeks in a wheelchair recovering from her broken leg.

Sean Payton collected everyone’s information at the scene, and he was very surprised that the young man with the burns on his hand was the most agitated person of them all.  All he could talk about was having to get to work.  He was also telling the train driver that he had a contract with Calgary Transit to take him on the train and that nowhere in that contract did it state that he could not be on a train if he had blood on his face.  Sean asked the man if he was a lawyer and the man said he was studying to be a legal assistant at Rocky Mountain College and that he knew his rights and that there was going to be big trouble for everyone if he was late for work.

Sean noted that Chris’ legal name was Allan Christopher Johnson and thought it unusual that someone would use their middle name as their first name.  His notes indicated that Chris suffered a second degree burn on the back of his left hand which extended down to the tips of his first four fingers.

Chris refused medical treatment.

Sean noted that Olive Zhang’s Alberta Health Card was in the name of Zhang Fang Mein.  She suffered a lost her incisor (one of her teeth), had cuts on her gums, had second degree burns on her left cheek, her forehead and down the left side of her neck.  Her most serious injury was a displaced tibia (a broken leg).

Sean was also worried about Olive’s husband.  He appeared dazed, confused and very red in the face.  He was hyperventilating but refused medical treatment.  When Sean asked the man his name, he said “my name is Bob Wei”.

Chris was late for work.  His supervisor Monica Delong was very upset when he walked in the door at 11:15 am, more than an hour late and covered in blood.  Monica didn’t say much when Chris walked in because the restaurant was so busy.  After the brunch rush ended at 3:00 pm Monica pulled Chris into her office and fired him.  She told him to leave immediately.  Chris asked to get his tips for the day and asked about when he could expect a cheque for the hours he worked.  Monica told him he wasn’t going to get any money from the restaurant because she had to do all the prep work he should have done if he had arrived on time.  Chris told her he was in the legal assistant program at Rocky Mountain College and that he knew his rights and that there was going to be big trouble for everyone if he didn’t get the money he was owed.  Monica threw him out of the restaurant.

Months Later

Chris was working at his practicum, but he had yet to find another job.  He hadn’t yet received any money from Smithy’s.  He had called a few times, but no one would talk to him or return his messages.  He went to the restaurant one night and Monica told him to leave or she would phone police.  He stormed off saying he needed the thousand dollars he was owed by the restaurant.

Chris’ real problem though was that, because he lost his job, he could not afford food and rent during his practicum.  Chris quit his practicum and because he did not complete it, he could not finish his program.  This was hard on Chris and he began to suffer from anxiety and depression so severe he was not able to even look for work.

One night, Chris gathered up some money he got from begging on the street corner outside the homeless shelter he was staying in and went to a local pub.  There Chris ran into an old friend from high school.  The friend was horrified as Chris related the story about how a train driver was to blame for him losing his practicum and forever changing his life.  The friend was just admitted to the Bar and had joined a big firm and they wanted them to bring in their own clients.  On a napkin the lawyer made some quick calculations and thought Chris could get $100,000 for being served coffee that was too hot and $250,000 for all his lost income from not completing his practicum.  The friend agreed to take on Chris as a client.  Chris loved his friend because the friend was going to be a great lawyer and get Chris a lot of money so he could get back on his feet. The friend agreed to file a statement of claim in Calgary on November 21, 2018.

Olive and Bob returned home to Edmonton.  Olive had spent months in a wheelchair, was in constant pain and had to have some dental work done.  After several trips to the dentist Olive developed a severe infection in her gums that gave her constant headaches. Even after she was done with the wheelchair Olive could not walk well and needed a walker to get around. 

Bob wasn’t well either.  He suffered a minor heart attack.  He said it was because of all the stress and anxiety he had from seeing Olive in pain and because he was now responsible for all the cooking and the cleaning.  Because neither Bob nor Olive were healthy, they had to sell their home and move into an Assisted Living site.  The manager at the site was horrified when she heard their story and she went home to tell her sibling their story.  The sibling worked at a law firm.  She met Bob and Olive and calculated that Olive could expect $76,000 for her broken tibia, broken tooth and the subsequent infection plus another $52,000 for her long-term care arising out of those injuries.  She estimated Olive could get $73,000 for the burns to her body.  The lawyer thought that Bob might have a chance to get $50,000 for the pain, suffering and anxiety he suffered along with the heart attack and after some digging discovered that Bob and Olive sold their house for a loss of $125,000 because they had to sell so fast.  She agreed to take Bob and Olive on as clients.  Bob and Olive loved their lawyer because they would get justice, and hopefully a lot of money.  Their lawyer agreed to file a statement of claim in Edmonton on November 30, 2018.

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