Service and Filing by Email: Courts Are Being Forced to Adapt

In March 2020, courts throughout Canada have been pressured to confront points arising from social distancing measures. The Supreme Court docket of Canada is now permitting paperwork to be filed by electronic mail, with unique paper copies to be filed subsequently at a later date. Additional info could be discovered right here.

Equally, apart from pressing issues, hearings are adjourned within the Ontario Superior Court docket of Justice, for a number of months. Additional info could be discovered right here.

In Morris v Onca, 2020 ONSC 1690, Justice Myers handled an pressing matter. The judgment creditor alleged she was liable to the judgment debtors shifting property overseas to keep away from paying her again. The case convention was scheduled to proceed on Monday, March 23, 2020.

In anticipation of the case convention, Justice Myers ordered that supplies for the movement be filed by electronic mail to the Motions Coordinator in searchable PDF Format, copying all events. Service of the supplies may very well be made with out acknowledgment of receipt for electronic mail service. No Books of Authority or statutory supplies had been to be despatched. References to case regulation or statutes may very well be made by hyperlink to CanLII. The movement was to be heard by Skype or Microsoft Groups.

Justice Myers’ affordable answer needs to be copied by different judges. We should always think about extending this strategy past the COVID-19 disaster. We should always take a tough take a look at how paper strikes by way of our courts and how we are able to get rid of paper.

Our courtroom guidelines needs to be revised to facilitate service and submitting by electronic mail. Serving and submitting by paper needs to be the exception. Ideally, our courts will ultimately have digital recordsdata that may obviate the necessity for electronic mail and as a substitute litigants and judges can add paperwork to the file.

(Views are my very own and don’t characterize the views of any group.)


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