Changes to the Small Claims Court Rules


The following amendments to the Small Claims Court Rules will come into force on September 1, 2017.

  1. Reminder:  Administrative Dismissal of Plaintiff’s Claims will come into effect on September 1, 2017

The Rules of the Small Claims Court provide a mechanism to automatically dismiss an action for delay. This means that plaintiffs must move their cases along or face dismissal under Rule 11.1.

Rule 11.1.01 was revised, effective September 1, 2015, to provide for the automatic administrative dismissal of actions that, by the later of two years of the action having been commenced and September 1, 2017, have not been

  1. disposed of by an order;
  2. settled; or
  3. scheduled for trial or an assessment hearing.

On September 1, 2017 Small Claims Court actions will be automatically dismissed where more than two years have passed since the plaintiff filed the claim unless the plaintiff took the steps required by the court rules or the rules or a court order provides otherwise.

Dismissal orders will be issued electronically and court clerks will mail the dismissal orders to the parties commencing September 1, 2017. Once an action is dismissed under Rule 11.1.01, the case is over unless the plaintiff brings a motion to set aside the court clerk’s automatic dismissal order.

A clerk’s automatic dismissal order under Rule 11.1.01 is a dismissal against all defendants and is a dismissal without costs.

If you are unable to have your action resolved or set down for trial by September 1, 2017, you can avoid dismissal of your action by bringing a motion to seek an order to extend the automatic dismissal timeline. Where the action is dismissed, a motion can be brought to seek to set aside the dismissal order.

  1. New Rule: Deemed dismissal of Defendant’s Claims

Where an order is made dismissing an action for delay under rule 11.1.01, there are consequences for defendant’s claims. These consequences are outlined in new rule 11.1.02 (made under O.Reg 202/17, in force on September 1, 2017).

Where an order is made administratively dismissing a plaintiff’s claim under rule 11.1.01 all defendant’s claims will be deemed to be dismissed pursuant to new rule 11.1.02.   Commencing September 1, 2017 a defendant’s claim shall be deemed to be dismissed 60 days after an order under rule 11.1.01 is served, unless the court orders otherwise during the 60-day period. To ask the court to make an order to allow your defendant’s claim to proceed as a separate action, you can bring a motion by serving and filing a Notice of Motion and Supporting Affidavit (form 15A).