Civil Litigation Kingston
Civil litigation is a broad area of law which encompasses everything from negligence to contract disputes. Each and every case is different and it would be impossible to describe the practice of civil litigation in its entirety.
Recently the Ontario government recognized that sometimes the damages claimed in a litigation action far outweigh the legal costs associated with pursuing or defending same. This issue was addressed by broadening the jurisdiction of the Ontario Small Claims Court to include claims up to $25,000.00 in damages. This is not to say that all claims under $25,000.00 can or should be handled on your own. It may be that your claim is worth more than $25,000.00 and you don’t know it. You may not know that your claim is statute barred by the Statute of Limitations and run the risk of having costs awarded against you if you pursue it. In short, despite the Ontario Small Claims Court being fashioned for use by the general public, it is still advisable to seek the advice of a lawyer before initiating or defending a case.
Civil litigation claims over $25,000.00 are heard in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Although individuals can still represent themselves at this level of court it is not advisable. This level of court is governed by the Rules of Civil Procedure which are somewhat complex and time sensitive. Cases at this level of court often involve expert evidence and require extensive disclosure. The cost consequences of not following the Rules of Civil Procedure or not properly framing and presenting a case can be extremely high.