When is a Court not a Court? When it is the Ontario Small Claims Court apparently.
Despite the Chief Justice of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice saying that the Courts never closed, that’s not true for the Small Claims division of that Court.
Unlike Superior Court, the Small Claims Court will not be deciding on most issues until 2021. We don’t know when in 2021, just the date.
That means that since March 16, 2020, the only matters being dealt with in Small Claims are where people didn’t attend examinations in aid of execution, were held in contempt and then usually picked up by the police during a traffic stop.
No default Judgments. No trials. No motions.
Settlement conferences, which are the step before trial, are supposed to be proceeding, but only 1/3 of the Deputy Judges (lawyers who sit part time as Small Claims Court Judges) agreed to participate by Zoom.
So, come 2021, there will be a 9 month backlog of cases to be heard.
The Court has permitted issuing of claims since September, so the backlog just continues to grow.
How is this OK?
Why is no one discussing this?
I am now.
Inga B. Andriessen, JD