The New Ontario Judicial Alternative Dispute Resolution Model


  • Peter Bowal



The author introduces the new ADR Pilot Project currently being tried in the Ontario Court of Justice (General Division). Taking place in Toronto, the project is aimed at avoiding civil litigation. It involves ADR referral and management after filing of the Statement of Defence. First, the parties must meet. If the dispute remains unsettled, statements are submitted by the parties. The parties and counsel then attend an ADR session, which can be a mediation, mini-trial, or neutral evaluation. The advantages and disadvantages of the project are then detailed, for the parties, the public interest, and otherwise. The author notes that the pilot project stresses many of the same values that are dominant in provincial arbitration legislation. However, there are also significant differences between the schemes. In the end, the author is optimistic for the success of the project, but cautions that more time must pass before any meaningful assessments can be made.