Regulation - Minister

O. Reg. 258/98 under the Courts of Justice Act (Rules of the Small Claims Court)

Regulation Number(s):
Instrument Type:
Regulation - Minister
Bill or Act:
Courts of Justice Act
Summary of Decision:
This regulation was approved on February 8, 2021, and filed on February 11, 2021.

This regulation amending O. Reg. 258/98 under the Courts of Justice Act (Rules of the Small Claims Court) is available online at:
Analysis of Regulatory Impact:
There are no new administrative costs to business anticipated in relation to this proposal.
Further Information:
Proposal Number:
Posting Date:
Summary of Proposal:
The Rules of the Small Claims Court have been amended to establish new electronic processes in Small Claims Court proceedings. The amendments:

Electronic issuance
• authorize electronic issuance of any court document that requires issuance
• authorize a clerk to electronically issue a document

Electronic communications by court staff
• authorize court staff to email court documents and communicate by email, where an email address is available in the court file, or for lawyers or paralegals, available on the Law Society of Ontario's website

Electronic signatures
• authorize the use of electronic signatures by judges, clerks and persons presiding at a proceeding or a step in a proceeding where a signature is required by the rules

Email service
• authorize email service without consent or court order for documents that are not required to be served personally or by an alternative to personal service
• allow email service on the Crown in right of Ontario, the Attorney General, Children's Lawyer and the Public Guardian and Trustee (PGT) for a plaintiff's claim and other documents as an alternative to personal service
• allow documents to be sent by email to the PGT where the rules require such documents to be left with the PGT
• require an affidavit of service for email service
• remove the option of fax service and the requirements for fax service

Email addresses and fax numbers
• require representative and litigant email addresses to be specified on certain court forms, if the representative or litigant has an email address
• remove the requirement to specify fax numbers on court forms

Remote commissioning
• align the affidavit requirements with the amendments in O. Reg. 431/20: Administering Oath or Declaration Remotely

Ceasing representation
• require representatives who stop representing a person in a proceeding before it is disposed of to notify the court in writing of the person's address, telephone number and email address

Settlement Conferences
• allow parties to file a consent at a settlement conference indicating that they wish to obtain final determination of a matter
• authorize the Regional Senior Judge or their designate to review an audio recording of a settlement conference before the case is disposed of for the purpose of reviewing a complaint made against a deputy judge under section 33.1 of the Courts of Justice Act

The new rules related to serving the Crown in right of Ontario and related entities are subject to O. Reg. 76/20 (Electronic service) under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020, as long as O. Reg. 76/20 remains in effect.
Contact Address:
Ministry of the Attorney General
Corporate Policy Unit
720 Bay Street, 7th Floor
Toronto, ON M7A 2S9
Effective Date:
March 1, 2021