Civil Litigation

Civil Litigation law is the area of law in which two or more parties engage in a legal dispute seeking monetary compensation or another specific performance rather than criminal sanctions.

In other words, a civil lawsuit occurs when one party is seeking to hold another party liable for some type of wrong. If successful, the claimant will receive some form of compensation from the defendant as a result of the action or inaction and the loss incurred.

Civil Litigation encompasses a broad range of disputes such as those between a landlord and tenant, product liability lawsuits, medical malpractice claims, divorce lawsuits, and personal injury claims.

The Civil Litigation Process in Ontario

Many people find the Civil Litigation process to be very intimidating but having a general understanding of the typical course of proceedings can help eradicate your confusion. The following will give you some insight on some key aspects of the Civil Litigation process in Ontario.

Determining Jurisdiction

The first step in the Civil Litigation process is determining the jurisdiction in which the action should be commenced. This is dependant on the amount of compensation the claimant is seeking. We will advise you as to which jurisdiction is best for your case.

Statement of Claim

The Statement of Claim is prepared by the claimant and essentially launches the litigation process. It describes the facts and legal reasoning as to why he or she believes they are entitled to compensation from the defendant. It is imperative to issue the statement of claim prior to the expiration of the applicable limitations period (two years for most cases).

Statement of Defense

Prepared by the defendant, the Statement of Defense sets out the reasons as to why the defending party believes he or she should not have to compensate the claimant. Your litigation counsel will determine the best legal defence against the Statement of Claim.

Examinations for Discovery

An Examination for Discovery is a proceeding whereby the lawyers from each party ask the other party questions about the issues in the litigation. The examination takes places before an examiner who transcribes the testimony and each party takes an oath to be truthful.

Mediation

During the Mediation session, both parties meet with a neutral mediator who tries to help them resolve the issues in the case. Prior to the Mediation, each party files a brief identifying the legal and factual disputes, their respective positions, and provides copies of the important documents associated with the case. The mediator cannot force the parties to accept a particular settlement. If a settlement is not reached, both parties may request a settlement conference or wish to go to trial.

Accidents can happen at anytime—to anyone—and typically without warning. Personal injury is the legal term use to describe an injury to the body, mind or emotions, as opposed to an injury to property. The term is most commonly used to refer to a type of tort lawsuit alleging that the plaintiff’s injury has been caused by the negligence of another, but also arises in defamation torts.

PERSONAL INJURY

Types of Personal Injury

The most common types of personal injury claims are road traffic accidents, accidents at work, tripping accidents, assault claims, accidents in the home, product defect accidents (product liability) and holiday accidents. The term “personal injury” also includes medical and dental accidents (which lead to numerous medical negligence claims every year) and conditions that are often classified as industrial disease cases, including asbestosis and peritoneal mesothelioma, chest diseases (e.g., emphysema, pneumoconiosis, silicosis, chronic bronchitis, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and chronic obstructive airways disease), vibration white finger, occupational deafness, occupational stress, contact dermatitis, and repetitive strain injury cases.

Monetary Compensation

If the negligence of another party can be proved, the injured party may be entitled to monetary compensation from that party. This system is complex and controversial, with critics calling for various forms of tort reform. Attorneys often represent clients on a “contingency basis,” in which the attorney’s fee is a percentage of the plaintiff’s eventual compensation, payable when the case is resolved. Oftentimes, having an attorney becomes essential to the success of a tort, as cases can become extremely complex, such as in the event of medical malpractice.

Kazembe and Associates have the experience and knowledge necessary to represent you in your personal injury claims and procure the maximum compensation available relative to your injury.