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How do I fill out a Plaintiff's Claim using the online service?
Once you've started your claim using the Small Claims Court e-filing service, you need to include details about:
- the type of claim you're making
- yourself, including your email, legal name, and address
- the person or business you're suing, including their legal name and address
- the reason you're making your claim
When you file your claim online, it is issued when the court clerk emails it back to you signed, dated, and with a court file number and the court seal on it.
You must give the defendant a copy of your claim and all supporting documents within 6 months of your claim being issued. This is called serving the defendant.
The defendant then has 20 days to respond to your claim.
Ontario residents who speak French have the right to bilingual proceedings at Small Claims Court. You can ask for bilingual proceedings in your Plaintiff's Claim or by filing a requisition form or a written statement.
You don't need a lawyer or paralegal to go to Small Claims Court. But you'll probably understand the process better if you talk to a paralegal or lawyer.
There are a lot of rules you must follow when you sue someone in Small Claims Court. If you don't follow the rules or do things within specific time limits, the court may not deal with your claim, and you may have to pay money to the person you sued.
If you earn a low income, you may be able to get legal help from Pro Bono Ontario. They offer services in some court locations in Toronto and Ottawa, and a legal advice hotline where you can get up to 30 minutes of free legal advice.
You can also read the Small Claims Court E-filing Service User Guide on the Ministry of the Attorney General website to learn more about the e-filing process.