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How long until trial?

Article Number: 467
Region: Ontario

While the vast majority of civil lawsuits never get to trial because they are settled out of court or abandoned, the typical case often goes to trial within two to five years. It takes this long because the justice system requires that all sides have adequate time to prepare a case, receive sufficient notice of each stage in the legal action and be able to explore all opportunities to mediate or settle the dispute before engaging a judge in a courtroom.

It should be noted that small claims actions are often handled more quickly since they involve less preparation and fewer steps. A typical small claims action will likely be heard by the court within 6-9 months.


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