5. If you disagree with a decision

I'm being sued by someone in Small Claims Court. What should I do?
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5. If you disagree with a decision

If you lose your case in Small Claims Court and the claim is for more than $2,500, you can appeal the decision in a higher court called Divisional Court. Usually, you have to appeal within 30 days of the Small Claims Court decision on your case. If you think you may need more time, talk to a lawyer to find out if you're allowed more time.

In the Small Claims Court case, you were the defendant and the person suing you was the plaintiff. If you appeal the decision, you become the appellant and the plaintiff becomes the respondent.

If you're planning to appeal your case, it's a good idea to get legal help. Appeals can take a long time and be very expensive. An appeal may even cost you more than paying back what you owe based on the Small Claims Court decision.

At an appeal, the divisional court judge will not listen to new evidence that was not given to the judge in the Small Claims Court. Also, witnesses are not called in an appeal. Instead, you must prove that the judge in Small Claims Court made a mistake on your case.

Even if you can prove the judge made a mistake, it may not change the overall decision in your case. You may still be required to pay money or give property to the plaintiff.

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Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General
Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General
Reviewed: April 1, 2019

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