October 29, 2020

Expansion of Small Claims Court Operations: What Litigants Need to Know

by Michelle Alonso de Mesa

On January 1, 2020, the jurisdiction of the Ontario Small Claims Court increased from $25,000 to $35,000. Since then the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a temporary reduction in services. Here is what litigants need to know about how the Court is adapting during the ongoing pandemic.

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May 28, 2020

With civil trials backlogged, court turns to summary judgment motion

by Agatha Wong

While Ontario courts continue to adapt to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the judiciary faces a growing backlog of civil trials. Given this backlog, courts may be more open to hearing summary judgment motions or other dispositive motions in ongoing actions.


May 13, 2020

Ontario E-Hearings Task Force Releases Best Practices for Remote Hearings

Kathryn Manning

On May 13, 2020, the E-Hearings Task Force (“the Task Force”) released Best Practices for Remote Hearings (the “Best Practices”). The purpose of the Best Practices is to provide guidance for lawyers and parties when preparing for and participating in remote hearings. They are accompanied by user-friendly tools such as checklists and a short Overview of the main points to assist parties in navigating what is now the new normal in litigation during the COVID-19 pandemic. The materials can be accessed here.

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May 11, 2020

Remote Hearings are Here to Stay

Agatha Wong

In two recent endorsements, the Superior Court of Justice sent a clear message to litigators to embrace technology as part of the civil justice system’s new normal.

Arconti v. Smith

In a case conference endorsement for the matter Arconti v. Smith, 2020 ONSC 2782, Justice Myers rejected the plaintiffs’ request to delay proceedings until the end of social distancing requirements rather than conduct remote examinations for discovery.

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April 23, 2020

Ontario Courts are expanding hearings and operations. What does this mean for suspended limitation periods and time limits?

Agatha Wong

In Ontario, limitation periods and certain procedural timelines have been suspended in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On March 20, 2020, following the declaration of a provincial state of emergency, the Ontario government made an order under subsection 7.1(2) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act temporarily suspending limitations periods and “any period[s] of time within which any step must be taken in any proceeding in Ontario” established by statute, regulation, rule, by-law, or government order. The suspension order is retroactive to March 16, 2020. While the order applies to time periods set out in legislative acts, such as the Rules of Civil Procedure and the Limitations Act, 2002, it does not suspend time limits established by contract.

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