OBA-Civil Litigation Section Program Series: Your Passport to the New Rules: Hit the Ground Running"

On January 1, 2010, fundamental changes to Ontario’s civil justice system took effect (see my earlier post here) including:
  • the Small Claims Court monetary jurisdiction increased from $10,000 to $25,000;
  • the Simplified Procedure monetary jurisdiction increased from $50,000 to $100,000;
  • Oral examinations for discovery are limited to one day unless the parties agree, or the court orders otherwise;
  • A new overriding duty of experts to the court;
  • A general principle of proportionality to save time and reduce costs based upon the amount at stake.
The Ontario Bar Association-Civil Litigation Section is presenting: “Your Passport to the New Rules: Hit the Ground Running”, a series of timely programs to help litigators and their clients navigate through the maze of significant procedural changes.
Did you know?
as of January 1, 2010
– no party shall exceed a total of seven hours of examination, regardless of the number of parties or
other persons to be examined, without leave of the court or consent of the parties? [R.31.05.1]
– Notice of motion (and factum if applicable) must be served and filed at least 7 days before the
hearing date.
– all experts will owe a duty to the Court that prevails over any client obligations? [R. 4.1.01 & R.
– there will be an increased incentive to early settlement because for cases that proceed to Court the
Court shall make orders proportionate to importance, complexity and amounts in dispute? [CJA

Here are the program descriptions:
The end of endless discovery? “Proportionality” as the new buzz word.
Monday, January 11, 2010 – OBA Conference Centre
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
Program Chair: Jeff Percival, Ogilvy Renault LLP
Speakers: Stephen Maddex, Lang Michener LLP
Kelly Friedman, Ogilvy Renault LLP
Preparing for and conducting written and oral discovery will be changing significantly on January 1, 2010. The Rules of Civil Procedure will be amended to include requirements for a discovery plan, limitations on the length of an examination for discovery, and a strong focus on ensure that discovery costs and efforts are proportionate to the nature and quantum of the litigation. Are you ready to agree on a discovery plan with opposing counsel? How can you quickly adapt to the new discovery rules? This session will focus on a nuts and bolts guide to Ontario’s new discovery regime:
· What is a discovery plan, anyway?
· How to complete all of your examinations in 7 hours or less.
· How is the definition of what documents must be included in an Affidavit of Documents going to change
Keeping Ahead of the Curve: Motions, Pre-Trials and Getting to Trial in 2010
Monday January 25, 2010 – OBA Conference Centre
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
Program Co-Chairs: Brian Bangay, Withrow and Associates (State Farm Claims Litigation Counsel)
Audrey Ramsay, Withrow and Associates (State Farm Claims Litigation Counsel)
Speakers: The Honourable Mr. Justice Paul Perell, Superior Court of Justice
The Honourable Mr. Justice Robert Beaudoin, Superior Court of Justice
Master Joan Haberman, Superior Court of Justice
Lee Akazaki, Gilbertson Davis Emerson LLP
Andrew Gray, Torys LLP
Frank Walwyn, WeirFoulds LLP
The roadmap for bringing summary judgment and other motions is now vastly different. January 1, 2010 brings significant procedural rule amendments and practice directions relating to motions, pre-trial conferences and setting actions down for trial. Avoid being bogged down in a costly procedural quagmire for these steps? This session will focus on a nuts and bolts guide to the road to trial.
• New Summary Judgment Motions
– Is oral evidence necessary to assess credibility?
– “Mini-Trial” or viva voce subrule 20.04(2.2) motion: defining your endgame
– All need not be lost: the Rule 20.05 road map after a failed summary judgment motion
– When the end is already near.
• Pretrial Powers under Clause 50.07(1)(c) which mirror Rule 20.05
– What do the new provisions for costs mean for summary judgment motions or pre-trials?
• New procedural signposts to getting your motions heard?
• What materials must be filed on different types of motion and when?
• What goes into a record for a successful motion
– Factums: what you need to know now
– Timing and schedule changes – what is served when?
• How will the court deal with adjournment requests under the new regime?
• Views from the Bench
Duty Calls: The New Role of Experts in the Ontario Civil Justice System
Monday, February 8, 2010 – OBA Conference Centre
5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Program Chair: Antonin Pribetic, Steinberg Morton Hope & Israel LLP
Speakers: Colin Stevenson, Stevensons LLP
Professor Leonard Brooks, Director, Diploma in Investigative and Forensic
Accounting Program, University of Toronto (Mississauga)
There is a new dawn approaching for experts giving evidence in Ontario civil proceedings. The amendments to Ontario Rules of Civil Procedure relating to an expert’s new overriding duty to the court and modifications to the evidentiary and fact-finding purpose of expert reports will be in force on January 1, 2010. Hear from an experienced litigator on the key procedural changes regarding the role of experts and the impact on litigation strategy, as well as from an accounting expert on the professional and ethical implications of the new Rules.
ADR (A joint presentation with the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section)
ADR/Effective Advocacy in Mediation and Beyond – Under the new Rules
Monday, February 22, 2010 – OBA Conference Centre
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
Program Co-Chairs: Kathleen Kelly, ADR Chambers
Anne Gottlieb, Mediation At Work Ltd.
Speakers: Lisa Feld, ADR Chambers
Nester Kostyniuk, Kostyniuk & Greenside
Stuart Svonkin, Torys LLP

Appropriate Dispute Resolution – is more than mediation. This final stop in the Civil Litigation Passport Series will equip you to strategically get your client’s case settled and if not settled one step (or more) closer to trial ready.
Learn from expert counsel and mediation specialists on how to strategically use mandatory mediation and other ADR processes to maximize the litigation outcomes for your clients.
• Play by the Rules – Break the Rules
• Know when to hold em – know when to fold em
• Hands off or into the fray
• Using mediation to scope the case – narrow the issues
• Assisting parties to score the goal

All programs will be held at the Ontario Bar Association Conference Centre.

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