Law Society Tribunal Rules of Practice and Procedure
Effective January 1, 2020, amended effective May 1, 2022
1.1 The purposes of these rules are to:
- establish fair processes that consider the interests of the public, the legal professions, individual licensees and licence applicants;
- promote timely determination of proceedings in accordance with the public interest;
- ensure efficient processes and proceedings;
- ensure that the Tribunal’s processes are clear and understandable;
- allow for flexibility to adapt processes to the needs of particular cases and types of cases, including those involving disadvantaged and vulnerable persons;
- promote early identification of issues in dispute and facilitate agreement and resolution;
- ensure that processes and proceedings are transparent to the public and to licensees and licence applicants; and
- allow licensees and licence applicants to participate effectively in the process, whether or not they have a representative.
1.2 These rules shall be interpreted and applied in accordance with their purposes.
1.3 Orders and directions made under these rules shall be proportionate to the importance and complexity of the issues.
1.4 The Tribunal may exercise its powers at the request of a party or on its own initiative.
1.5 The Tribunal may decide not to apply these rules strictly unless to do so would be inconsistent with legislation, regulations or a mandatory rule.
1.6 The Tribunal operates electronically to the extent reasonably possible taking into account the purposes set out in Rule 1.1 and where doing so improves access to the Tribunal and is procedurally fair.
2.1 These rules are referred to as the Law Society Tribunal Rules of Practice and Procedure.
2.2 These rules apply to all proceedings before the Hearing and Appeal Divisions of the Law Society Tribunal, starting January 1, 2020.
2.3 In these rules, unless the context requires otherwise:
“Act” means the Law Society Act, RSO 1990, c. L. 8 (“Loi”);
“administrative suspension order appeal” means an appeal from an order under section 46, 47, 47.1, 48, or 49 of the Act (“appel d’une ordonnance de suspension administrative”);
“appeal” includes, where appropriate, a cross-appeal (“appel”);
“appearance” means a hearing, motion, case conference, pre-hearing conference or proceeding management conference (“comparution”);
“appellant” means a person who starts an appeal, including, where appropriate, a person who starts a cross-appeal (“appellant”);
“assigned hearing panel” means the Tribunal member or members assigned to a merits hearing or motion by the Chair (“formation d’audience”);
“authenticity” includes: (a) the fact that a document that is said to be an original was printed, written or otherwise produced and signed or executed as it purports to have been; (b) a document that is said to be a copy is a true copy of the original; and (c) where the document is a copy of a letter or electronic communication, the original was sent as it purports to have been sent and received by the person to whom it is addressed (“authenticité”);
“Chair” means the Chair of the Law Society Tribunal, or a Vice-Chair of the Hearing or Appeal Division acting in the Chair’s absence (“Président”);
“document” includes electronic records (“document”);
“endorsement” means a record of an action taken by the Tribunal, made by a member of the Tribunal or Tribunal staff (“inscription”);
“failure to co-operate application” means a summary hearing in which the notice of application alleges one or more failure(s) to respond promptly and completely to investigative requests only.
“failure to co-operate filing date” means the date that the originating process, the information sheet and the Law Society’s summary affidavit are filed with the Tribunal.
“file” means to provide a document to the Tribunal in accordance with Rules 5.4 to 5.11 (“deposer”);
“holiday” means any Saturday, Sunday, statutory holiday or other day on which the Tribunal is closed (“jour férié”);
“intervenor” means a person or organization granted leave to participate in a proceeding or a part of a proceeding under Rule 4 (“intervenant”);
“Law Society” means the Law Society of Ontario (“Barreau”);
“leave” means permission granted by a panel (“autorisation”);
“licensee” means a lawyer or paralegal who is a party to a proceeding (“titulaire de permis”);
“licence applicant” means the applicant for a licence in a licensing proceeding (“demandeur de permis”);
“non-disclosure order” means an order that the transcript or a part of the transcript of a public appearance be not public, and that anyone who was present may not disclose what occurred (“ordonnance de non-divulgation”);
“not public order” means an order that an appearance or document, or a part of the appearance or document, be not public (“ordonnance de non-publicité”);
“originating process” means a Notice of Application, Notice of Referral for Hearing, Notice of Appeal, Notice of Administrative Suspension Order Appeal, Notice of Cross-Appeal, Notice of Motion – Interlocutory Suspension or Restriction or Notice of Motion – Vary or Cancel Interlocutory Suspension or Restriction (“acte introductif d’instance”);
“panel” means the member or members of the Tribunal assigned to an appearance by the Chair (“formation”);
“panelist” means a member of a panel (“membre de la formation”) ;
“previously admitted evidence” means evidence that was admitted in a proceeding before a court or tribunal, whether in or outside Ontario, at a hearing that occurred before the hearing in which the evidence is now sought to be admitted (“prevue déjà admise”)
“publication ban” means an order that no one may publish information about what occurred at a public appearance or the contents of public documents (”interdiction de publication”);
“representative” means a person representing a party in the proceeding (“représentant”);
“serve” means to provide documents to the other party or parties in accordance with Rule 3.1 or Rule 5.1 (“signifier”);
“summary hearing” means a proceeding in which the Law Society requests that the matter be assigned to a single member panel under para. 1 of s. 2(1) of O. Reg. 167/07 (“audience sommaire”);
“Tribunal” means the Law Society Tribunal, and includes a panel (“Tribunal”);
“Tribunal’s File Sharing Platform” means an electronic file sharing system established by or approved by the Tribunal for use by parties and others in Tribunal proceedings (“▪”);
“Tribunal member” means a member of the Hearing Division or Appeal Division (“membre du Tribunal”).
2.4 If a word or phrase is defined in the Act, it has the same meaning in these rules unless the rules specify otherwise.
2.5 In calculating time under these rules, or under a direction or order made under these rules:
- where there is a reference to a number of days between two events, they shall be counted by excluding the day on which the first event happens but including the day on which the second event happens;
- where a period of less than seven days is prescribed, holidays shall not be counted;
- where the time for doing an act expires on a holiday, the act may be done on the next day that is not a holiday; and
- where a document would be deemed to be received or service would be deemed to be effective on a day that is a holiday, the document shall be deemed to be received or service shall be deemed to be effective on the next day that is not a holiday.
3.1 (1) A party starts a proceeding by serving and filing the appropriate originating process (Forms 1-17) and information sheet (Forms 18-25).
(2) A party must serve an originating process and information sheet by:
- hand delivery to the person being served;
- regular mail, registered mail or courier sent to the party’s home and / or business addresses;
- electronically by e-mail sent to the party’s home and / or business e-mail addresses; or
- any other method agreed to by the person being served or directed by the Tribunal.
(3) The Law Society must file originating processes and information sheets electronically.
(4) The addresses mentioned in Rule 3.1 (2) (b) and (c) are:
- in the case of licensees, the addresses provided to the Law Society under By-Law 8; and
- in the case of licence applicants, the addresses provided to the Law Society during the licensing process.
3.2 (1) A party may amend an originating process by serving and filing an amended version that clearly indicates the nature of the changes:
- in a proceeding in the Hearing Division, no later than 10 days before the hearing on the merits; and
- in a proceeding in the Appeal Division, at any time before the appeal is perfected.
(2) A party may amend an originating process after the deadline with consent of the other party or with leave.
3.3 (1) A party may, at any time, withdraw a proceeding or motion by serving and filing a Notice of Withdrawal (Form 26).
(2) A party that brought a proceeding or motion and does not attend an appearance or meet a deadline set by the Tribunal may be deemed to have withdrawn the proceeding or motion.
(3) A responding party may request costs after a proceeding or motion is withdrawn or deemed withdrawn.
4.1 The Tribunal may make an order adding a person as a party where the person is entitled under the Act or otherwise by law to be a party to the proceeding.
4.2 (1) The Tribunal may make an order permitting a person to participate in the proceeding or a part of the proceeding as an intervenor if this would be in the interests of justice.
(2) The Tribunal shall determine the extent of an intervenor’s participation and may make other directions about that participation.
4.3 The Tribunal may invite a person to participate in the proceeding or part of the proceeding to assist the Tribunal. A person who participates under this rule is not a party and no costs order may be made against that person.
5.1 A document other than an originating process may be served by:
- hand delivery;
- regular mail, registered mail or courier;
- e-mail, if less than 20 MB ;
- uploading an electronic document to the Tribunal’s File Sharing Platform and serving notice on the other party that the electronic document has been uploaded; or
- any other method agreed to by the person being served or directed by the Tribunal.
5.2 Service is deemed to be effective:
- if the document is served, other than by mail, before 5 p.m. on a business day, on that day;
- if the document is served, other than by mail, on a holiday or after 5 p.m. on a business day, on the next business day;
- if the document is mailed, on the fifth business day after mailing.
5.3 Service on a licensee using contact information provided to the Law Society under By-Law 8, ss. 3 and 4 is considered effective unless otherwise ordered by the Tribunal.
5.4 When a document is filed with the Tribunal, service must be confirmed by:
- a Confirmation of Service form (Form 27), which may be provided in the body of an e-mail;
- an affidavit of the person who served it;
- an e-mail showing that the document was sent to the other person’s e-mail address including by
- copying the Tribunal in the original e-mail to the other person; or
- forwarding the original e-mail to the Tribunal; or
- written acceptance of service by the person served, which may be provided by e-mail to the Tribunal.
5.5 (1) All parties must be copied on correspondence sent to the Tribunal about the substance of the proceeding.
(2) All communication with a panel other than during an appearance shall be sent in writing to the Tribunal Office, and may be sent electronically.
5.6 (1) All documents filed, and all written and oral communications with the Tribunal must be relevant to the proceeding and respectful to all participants in the proceeding and to the Tribunal.
(2) Failure to comply with this rule is a relevant factor in making a costs award.
5.7 Acceptance of documents by the Tribunal does not mean that they are timely, properly served or otherwise comply with these rules or the order or direction under which they were filed. The Tribunal may reject documents after they are filed.
5.8 Other than physical documents filed at an in-person appearance, all documents must be filed in electronic form and be in accordance with the Tribunal’s practice direction on electronic filing.
5.9 Where possible, electronic documents must be filed in pdf format or, alternatively, in both pdf and other formats such as .doc, .ppt and .xlsx. Electronic documents may be filed by e-mail (if less than 20 MB), on a USB drive, by the Tribunal’s File Sharing Platform or by such other method as the Tribunal may permit. The file name and the structure and format of the electronic document must comply with the Tribunal’s practice direction on electronic documents.
5.10 Where a party files a document in physical form at an in-person appearance:
(1) the party must file:
- two copies of the document if the appearance is before a single-member panel;
- four copies of the document if the appearance is before a three-member panel; or
- six copies of the document if the appearance is before a five-member panel;
together with an electronic copy, or an additional un-tabbed and unbound copy, of the physical document.
(2) the electronic copy of the physical document filed by the party, or an electronic copy created by the Tribunal if no electronic copy is filed by the party, becomes part of the record of proceeding but the physical document does not.
5.11 (1) Documents filed with the Tribunal must be legible. Written documents must be typed or printed. Electronic documents must be formatted to be printed on white paper 216 millimetres by 279 millimetres (5 by 11 inches).
(2) Physical documents must be on white paper 216 millimetres by 279 millimetres (8.5 by 11 inches).
(3) These requirements do not apply to documentary evidence or copies of documentary evidence.
5.12 A factum must include at least the following sections:
- facts, argument and law;
- the order requested;
- schedule A, containing a list of authorities referred to; and
- schedule B, containing the text of the relevant portions of statutes, regulations, by-laws and rules.
5.13 Without leave, a factum shall be no more than 30 pages.
5.14 (1) Parties must mark those passages in their book of authorities to which they intend to refer in oral argument.
(2) Parties should not include authorities contained in the Tribunal Book of Authorities or in a book of authorities already filed by another party.
5.15 The front and back covers of bound documents must be:
- green if filed by the Law Society;
- white if filed by a licensee or licence applicant;
- buff if filed by any other party; or
- red if the document is subject to a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban, unless the document was filed before the order was made.
6.1 (1) The date of the first appearance, in Hearing Division proceedings, is set out on the information sheet.
(2) For a summary hearing, interlocutory suspension or restriction motion, or motion to vary or cancel an interlocutory suspension or restriction, the first appearance is the scheduled hearing date. The applicant must confirm the availability of a proposed hearing date with the Tribunal Office before including it in the information sheet.
(3) For all other Hearing Division proceedings, the first appearance is a proceeding management conference. Available proceeding management conference dates are posted on the Tribunal website.
(4) An appeal hearing is scheduled by the Tribunal Office once the appeal has been perfected.
6.2 An appearance may be scheduled or adjourned by:
- a pre-hearing conference or proceeding management conference;
- the assigned hearing panel or its chair; or
- the Tribunal Office, if the scheduling or adjournment is on consent.
6.3 Adjournments are not automatic, even if the parties consent. Once an appearance before the assigned hearing panel is scheduled, that date is firm and adjournments will be granted only in exceptional circumstances, as set out in the Tribunal’s Practice Direction on Adjournments. Parties must be ready to proceed on the dates scheduled.
6.4 An order adjourning an appearance may include such terms and conditions as the panel considers appropriate.
6.5 Participants in proceedings are entitled to accommodation of their needs under the Human Rights Code, RSO 1990, c. H. 19, to the point of undue hardship. A participant in a proceeding must notify the Tribunal as soon as possible of any accommodation requests.
6.6 Where it would be fair and in the interests of justice, the Tribunal may:
- permit a support person to sit near a witness while the witness testifies;
- order that a witness testify in a manner that would allow the witness not to see the licensee, licence applicant or any other person;
- order that a licensee or licence applicant not personally conduct the cross-examination of a witness, and shall appoint counsel for the purpose of conducting the cross-examination without cost to the licensee or licence applicant; and
- make other orders accommodating or protecting witnesses.
6.7 Where notice of an appearance has been given to a party and the party does not attend or does not participate, the panel may proceed in the absence of the party or without the party’s participation. The party will not be entitled to any further notice in the proceeding.
7.1 The Tribunal applies active case management throughout the course of proceedings, so that, among other things:
- proceedings move forward in a fair and timely way, in the public interest;
- scheduled hearing time is used efficiently and effectively so the assigned hearing panel hears and decides the issues in dispute;
- issues are identified early so the parties have the opportunity to fully prepare; and
- adjournments are granted only due to unforeseeable and exceptional circumstances.
7.2 Case management directions may be made at the request of a party or on the Tribunal’s own initiative at:
- a proceeding management conference;
- a pre-hearing conference;
- a hearing or case conference, by the assigned hearing panel; or
- a case conference, by the chair of the assigned hearing panel, prior to or between hearing days.
7.4 A panelist shall prepare an endorsement after each proceeding management conference, pre-hearing conference or case conference, recording any directions made and appearances scheduled.
7.5 The Tribunal may hold a proceeding management conference on its own initiative or at the request of any party.
7.6 A proceeding management conference panel may:
- schedule or adjourn an appearance;
- set timelines and deadlines for steps in the proceeding;
- hear and decide a procedural motion;
- make a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban; and
- make any other procedural directions, including directions about process at the hearing.
7.7 The purpose of a pre-hearing conference is to facilitate the just and most expeditious disposition of a proceeding.
7.8 A pre-hearing conference panel may discuss with the parties,
- the identification, limitation or simplification of the issues in the proceeding;
- the identification and limitation of evidence and witnesses;
- the possibility of settlement of any or all of the issues in the proceeding;
- the possibility of the parties entering into an agreed statement of facts; and
- the procedural steps appropriate to moving the matter toward a hearing in a fair and timely manner.
7.9 A pre-hearing conference shall be promptly scheduled in every proceeding other than a summary hearing, interlocutory suspension or restriction motion, motion to vary or cancel an interlocutory suspension or restriction, or appeal unless the matter is ready for hearing. The Tribunal may, at the request of a party, or on its own initiative, schedule a pre-hearing conference in any proceeding, at any time.
7.10 A pre-hearing conference is confidential and without prejudice. No one may disclose what occurred at a pre-hearing conference or what is contained in a pre-hearing conference memorandum, unless otherwise ordered or required by law. The panel may summarize in the endorsement the results of the discussions and the directions made.
7.11 (1) A pre-hearing conference panel may:
- schedule or adjourn an appearance;
- set timelines and deadlines for steps in the proceeding; and
- make any other procedural directions to move the matter forward toward hearing in a fair and timely manner, including directions about process at the hearing.
(2) Procedural directions may be made by a pre-hearing conference panel whether or not the parties consent.
7.12 (1) Each party must prepare a pre-hearing conference memorandum containing a statement of the facts the party relies upon and its position on the issues in the proceeding.
(2) Each party’s memorandum must be sent by e-mail to the other parties and to the Tribunal Office. The Law Society’s memorandum must be sent at least seven days prior to the first pre-hearing conference. The licensee or licence applicant’s memorandum must be sent at least two days prior to the first pre-hearing conference.
(3) The Tribunal may waive the requirement to file a memorandum, if the preparation of the memorandum would not be practical or of assistance in the circumstances.
7.13 (1) Except with agreement of the parties, a Tribunal member who conducted a pre-hearing conference in an application shall not be assigned to a motion or merits hearing or to any appeal of that proceeding, nor shall a member of the panel assigned to a hearing preside at a pre-hearing conference. The parties must confirm their agreement by filing a consent (Form 31).
(2) This rule does not preclude a Tribunal member who conducted a pre-hearing conference from conducting a proceeding management conference.
7.14 The Tribunal may hold a case conference on the assigned hearing panel’s own initiative, as directed at a proceeding management conference, or at the request of any party.
7.15 At a case conference, the assigned hearing panel or its chair may:
- schedule or adjourn an appearance;
- set timelines and deadlines for steps in the proceeding;
- make a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban; and
- make any other procedural directions.
8.1 (1) A motion must be made by notice of motion (Form 28) unless the nature of the motion or the circumstances make a notice of motion unnecessary.
(2) If a motion date has not been confirmed by the Tribunal at the time the notice of motion is served and filed, the notice of motion must indicate that the motion will be heard on a date to be set by the Tribunal.
(3) The Tribunal may direct that the parties attend a proceeding management conference before setting a motion date.
(4) A motion may not be brought prior to the start of the proceeding to which it relates.
8.2 (1) This rule applies where a motion is made by notice of motion, unless the Tribunal has made specific directions otherwise.
(2) At least 10 days before the hearing of the motion, the moving party must serve and file a motion record that includes the notice of motion, together with a factum and a book of authorities.
(3) A responding party to the motion must serve and file a factum, together with a motion record and book of authorities, if any, at least three days before the hearing of the motion.
(4) A motion record must have consecutively numbered pages and contain;
- a table of contents that lists each document contained in the motion record and describes each by its nature and date, including exhibits, which shall be described by their nature, date and exhibit number or letter;
- the notice of motion, if not already included in another party’s motion record; and
- all affidavits and other material upon which the party intends to rely.
(5) Where cross-examination on an affidavit in a motion record occurs, it will take place before the panel at the motion hearing, unless the parties agree or the Tribunal orders that it take place before a court reporter. The party calling the witness must ensure the attendance of the witness for cross-examination.
8.3 When a motion is on consent or unopposed:
- facta and books of authorities are not required unless ordered by the Tribunal; and
- the moving party must file a draft of the order sought and any consents.
9.1 (1) As directed by the Tribunal, an appearance shall occur by telephone, by videoconference, in writing or in person.
(2) In directing the manner of an appearance, the Tribunal takes into account the purposes set out in Rule 1.1, that applications before the Tribunal involve parties, witnesses and members who may be remote from the Tribunal and that there are costs and benefits associated with in-person hearings to be taken into account.
9.2 (1) Subject to Rule 9.2(2), a party or the party’s representative may attend an in-person appearance by telephone or by videoconference on request.
(2) A witness giving oral evidence and a representative or self-represented party examining a witness must attend an in-person appearance in person, unless the other party consents or the Tribunal gives leave.
(3) Subject to direction by the panel, a panelist may attend an in-person appearance by videoconference.
9.3 The panel assigned to an appearance may convert the appearance to a telephone, a videoconference, an in-writing or an in-person appearance from the manner of appearance otherwise directed.
9.4 (1) A proceeding shall be conducted in English, French, or both English and French, at the choice of the licensee or licence applicant.
(2) A licensee or licence applicant who asks that the language of the proceeding be changed from the language in which it was started must make the request within 30 days of service of the originating process.
(3) Documents provided in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by a translation of the document into the language of the proceeding by a qualified translator as well as a certificate by the translator setting out that the translation is a true and accurate translation to the best of the translator’s skill and ability.
(4) A party intending to call a witness whose testimony will require interpretation must notify the Tribunal as early as possible, no later than seven days before the hearing at which the witness will be examined.
9.5 (1) Subject to Rules 9.5(2) and (3), an in-person hearing shall be held at the Law Society Tribunal in Toronto.
(2) Where all parties consent to a hearing being held outside Toronto and within the Province of Ontario, the hearing shall be held in that place.
(3) The Tribunal may order that a hearing be held in another place.
9.6 (1) The Tribunal may order that two or more proceedings, in whole or in part, be heard at the same time or one immediately after the other, if:
- the proceedings have a question of fact, law or mixed fact and law in common;
- the proceedings involve the same parties;
- the proceedings arise out of the same transaction or occurrence or series of transactions or occurrences; or
- for any other reason an order ought to be made under this rule.
(2) Where an order is made under Rule 9.6 (1), the Tribunal shall determine the effects of hearing the merits of the proceedings together or one immediately after the other, and may give directions about those effects.
9.7 The parties to a conduct proceeding may consent to the application being heard by one member of the Tribunal under O. Reg. 167/07, s. 2(1) by filing a consent (Form 31) with the Tribunal.
9.8 (1) A person wishing to have a copy of the transcript of a public appearance must order it, at their own expense, from the reporting service that recorded the appearance.
(2) The first party to obtain a transcript of an appearance is responsible for the cost of the Tribunal’s electronic and hard copies, which will be provided to the Tribunal directly by the reporting service.
9.9 Subject to rule 9.10, no one other than a court reporting service may, without leave:
- take photographs or make a video or audio recording in the Tribunal premises or the hearing room; or
- take a screen shot or make a video or audio recording of an appearance.
9.10 Subject to providing prior written notice to the Tribunal, a representative, a party acting in person or a journalist may unobtrusively make an audio recording at an appearance for the sole purpose of supplementing or replacing notes made during the appearance.
10.1 The Law Society must disclose to the licensee or licence applicant, within a reasonable period of time following the filing of the application, all potentially relevant documents in its possession, except for those it is not disclosing due to privilege. Privileged documents must be identified to the other party.
10.2 A licensee or licence applicant bringing a motion for further production from the Law Society must include in the motion record prior correspondence to the Law Society’s representative requesting the documents and the Law Society representative’s response.
10.3 Rules 10.1 and 10.2 do not apply to interlocutory suspension or restriction motions, but this rule does not preclude a panel from making disclosure orders in such cases.
10.4 Where a party seeks production of documents from a third party, the party seeking the documents must obtain a motion date, and serve on the third party a summons to witness requiring the third party to attend on the motion date, attendance money and a Notice of Motion. The Notice of Motion must set out the relevance of the documents requested from the third party.
10.5 (1) Each party must provide to every other party:
- a document book containing all anticipated documentary evidence;
- a list of witnesses that the party intends to call; and
- an affidavit, signed witness statement or summary of the anticipated oral evidence of each witness, as well as the witness’s contact information or the contact information of a person through whom the witness may be contacted.
(2) The Law Society must comply with this rule no later than 14 days before a summary hearing and no later than 20 days before any other merits hearing. A licensee or licence applicant must comply with this rule no later than seven days before a summary hearing and no later than 10 days before any other merits hearing.
10.6 (1) Each party must provide to every other party, no later than 60 days before a hearing, a copy of the affidavit or written report of every expert witness the party intends to call.
(2) An affidavit or report of an expert must include an Acknowledgement of Expert’s Duty (Form 33).
10.7 Evidence not disclosed or produced as required by this rule may not be relied upon without leave of the Tribunal.
11.1 A panel may receive and rely on any facts agreed to by the parties without further proof or evidence.
11.2 (1) The evidence-in-chief of a witness may be given by affidavit, unless the Tribunal orders otherwise.
(2) Any cross-examination on an affidavit will take place before the assigned hearing panel, unless the parties agree or the Tribunal orders that it take place before a court reporter.
(3) The party calling the witness must ensure the attendance of the witness for cross-examination.
11.3 (1) A party may request any other party to admit, for the purposes of the proceeding only, the truth of a fact or the authenticity of a document. The request must be in Form 29 and served on the other party. The request to admit must include a copy of any document mentioned in it unless the other party already has the document. A request must be served no later than:
- 30 days before the hearing if the request contains 75 paragraphs or less;
- 50 days before the hearing if the request contains 76-200 paragraphs;
- 70 days before the hearing if the request contains more than 200 paragraphs.
(2) The party on whom the request is served must serve a response no later than;
- 20 days after the date of service if the request contains 75 paragraphs or less;
- 40 days after the date of service if the request contains 76-200 paragraphs;
- 60 days after the date of service if the request contains more than 200 paragraphs.
(3) The response must be in Form 30 and must, in relation to each fact and document mentioned in the request:
- admit the truth of the fact or the authenticity of the document;
- specifically deny the truth of the fact or the authenticity of the document and set out the reason for the denial; or
- refuse to admit the truth of the fact or the authenticity of the document and set out the reason for the refusal.
(4) If a party fails to respond to a request to admit or fails to respond in a manner that complies with this rule, that party will be deemed to admit, for the purposes of the proceeding only, the truth of the facts or the authenticity of the documents mentioned in the request to admit.
(5) If a party on whom a request to admit was served does not attend or does not participate in the hearing on the merits of the proceeding, whether or not the party served a response, the party will be deemed, for the purposes of the hearing only, to admit the truth of the facts or the authenticity of the documents mentioned in the request to admit.
(6) If a party denies or refuses to admit the truth of a fact or the authenticity of a document after receiving a request to admit, and the fact or document is subsequently proved, the Tribunal shall take the denial or refusal into account in exercising its discretion respecting costs.
(7) The Tribunal may relieve a party from a deemed admission.
11.4 A party may file an agreed statement of facts, request to admit that has been deemed admitted, affidavit or document book for the panel to review to prepare for the hearing. Filing such documents does not preclude another party from objecting to their admissibility at the hearing. Parties may request that documents be not public pending the hearing.
11.5 (1) The Tribunal may, by summons, require any person to give evidence on oath or affirmation at a hearing and/or produce in evidence at a hearing specified documents and things.
(2) A summons shall be in Form 32, and may be signed by the Registrar or a Tribunal member.
(3) On request of a party, unless a panel has directed otherwise, the Tribunal Office may provide a blank summons to a party.
(4) The party that obtains a summons must serve the summons on the witness, and pay attendance money as set out in Tariff A under the Rules of Civil Procedure.
11.6 (1) Subject to Rule 11.6(2), the Tribunal may direct that a witness be excluded from a hearing until the witness is called to give evidence.
(2) A party or a person instructing a party’s representative shall not be excluded, but an order may be made that that person’s evidence be called before the party’s other witnesses.
(3) Unless the Tribunal orders otherwise, there must be no communication to an excluded witness of any evidence given during the witness’ absence until after the witness has given evidence.
11.7 (1) The rules of evidence applicable in civil proceedings apply in Tribunal proceedings, except where these rules provide otherwise.
(2) Sections 15(4) and 16 of the Statutory Powers Procedure Act, RSO 1990, c. S.22 apply to the admission of evidence in Tribunal proceedings.
(3) Sections 15(1) and (2) of the Statutory Powers Procedure Act apply to the admission of evidence in interlocutory suspension or restriction motions.
(4) Any proof that must be given or any requirement that must be met prior to a bank record or a business record being received or admitted in evidence under any common law or statutory rule may be given or met by the oral testimony or affidavit of an individual given to the best of the individual’s knowledge and belief.
11.8 Previously admitted evidence may be admitted on consent, or if
- the party against whose interest the evidence is sought to be admitted was a party to the other proceeding,
- the party against whose interest the evidence is sought to be admitted either gave the evidence sought to be admitted or had the opportunity to cross-examine the witness who gave the evidence at the other proceeding; and
- an issue in the other proceeding is substantially similar to an issue in the current proceeding.
11.9 (1) A panel shall not permit cross-examination that is repetitive, abusive or otherwise inappropriate.
(2) A panel may reasonably limit further examination or cross-examination of a witness where it is satisfied the examination or cross-examination has been sufficient to disclose fully and fairly all matters relevant to the issues in the proceeding.
11.10 Despite any other rule, information obtained by the Discrimination and Harassment Counsel as a result of the performance of her duties under clause 19 (1) (a) of By-Law 11 must not be used and is inadmissible in a hearing.
12.1 (1) On the motion of the Law Society, the Tribunal may make an interlocutory order suspending a licence or restricting the manner in which a licensee may practise law or provide legal services.
(2) On the motion of a licensee or the Law Society, the Tribunal may vary or cancel an interlocutory order made under this rule.
12.2 Rule 8 applies to interlocutory suspension or restriction motions, except where it differs from this rule.
12.3 If the motion relates to a proceeding where the Hearing Division has not started a hearing on the merits, the Law Society shall obtain the authorization of the Proceedings Authorization Committee to bring an interlocutory suspension or restriction motion.
12.4 (1) In an interlocutory suspension or restriction motion, the Law Society must serve and file its Notice of Motion, Information Sheet, motion record, factum and book of authorities at least three days before the hearing of the motion unless the motion is being heard on 10 days’ notice or more, in which case they must be filed no later than 10 days prior to the hearing, or unless the Tribunal orders otherwise.
(2) The Tribunal may order that service is not necessary if:
- it is not practical; or
- the delay it could cause may lead to serious consequences.
(3) The licensee must serve and file a motion record, factum and book of authorities, if any, not later than 2 p.m. on the day before the hearing of the motion, unless the motion is being heard on 10 days’ notice or more, in which case they must be filed no later than three days prior to the hearing.
12.5 Unless ordered otherwise, an interim interlocutory suspension or restriction order remains in effect until the interlocutory suspension or restriction motion is determined.
12.6 Unless ordered otherwise, an interlocutory suspension or restriction order remains in effect until a final order is made in the conduct proceeding to which the motion relates, or the Tribunal varies or cancels the order.
12.7 An interlocutory suspension or restriction order may be varied or cancelled on the basis of fresh evidence or a material change in circumstances.
12.8 A party starts a request to vary or cancel an interlocutory suspension or restriction order by serving and filing a Motion – Vary or Cancel Interlocutory Suspension or Restriction (Form 8 or 9) and information sheet (Form 21 or 22).
13.1 (1) The record of proceeding consists of:
- all materials filed with the Tribunal, unless the Tribunal refuses them for failure to comply with these rules, an order or direction;
- all exhibits, including any marked “for identification”;
- all other documents and correspondence from a party or other participant, reviewed by a panel, except for the purpose of a pre-hearing conference;
- all notices of hearing;
- all endorsements;
- all orders made by the Tribunal;
- all reasons issued by the Tribunal; and
- all transcripts filed with the Tribunal.
(2) Items listed out in Rule 13.1(a) to 13.1(h) that became part of the Record of Proceeding after October 1, 2021 shall be maintained in electronic form unless the Tribunal determines otherwise.
13.2 (1) The contents of the record of proceeding and all appearances except pre-hearing conferences are public, unless the Tribunal or a court orders otherwise.
(2) Anyone may attend a public appearance unless the Tribunal orders otherwise.
- openness poses a serious risk to an important public interest,
- the order is necessary to prevent this risk because reasonable alternative measures will not be effective; and
- the benefits of the order will outweigh its negative effects.
(2) If a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban is necessary, the Tribunal shall make the order that affects openness the least while achieving the objective.
13.4 In applying Rule 13.3 to a request for a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban in a capacity proceeding, a panel shall consider:
- that a central issue in capacity proceedings is the licensee’s health;
- the nature and impact on the public of any of the licensee’s actions that led to the proceeding;
- any stigma related to the nature of the licensee’s health issues;
- the possible impact of disclosure on the licensee’s or others’ health; and
- any other relevant factor.
13.5 A not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban shall be made to ensure that the identities of children and persons who allege sexual assault or misconduct are not made public, except where an adult who alleges sexual assault or misconduct requests otherwise.
13.6 Unless the holder of the privilege has given consent, the Tribunal shall order that privileged or possibly privileged documents, and evidence about privileged or possibly privileged documents and communications be not public.
13.7 (1) When an appearance is not public, no one may attend except for the licensee or licence applicant, the parties’ representatives, witnesses and anyone else permitted by the panel.
(2) When an appearance is not public, no one other than the licensee or licence applicant and the parties’ representatives may receive or view the transcript, except that witnesses may view the transcript of their own testimony.
(3) When a document is not public, it must not be provided to anyone other than the parties, their representatives, or a witness testifying about the document.
(4) No one may disclose what occurred during a not public appearance to anyone other than the parties or their representatives. No one who has become aware of a not public document as a result of the proceeding may disclose its contents to anyone other than the parties or their representatives.
13.8 (1) When there is a non-disclosure order, no one other than the licensee or licence applicant and the parties’ representatives may receive or view the transcript, except that witnesses may view the transcript of their own testimony.
(2) No one may disclose what occurred during an appearance subject to a non-disclosure order to anyone other than the parties or their representatives. No one who has become aware of a not public document as a result of attending the appearance may disclose its contents to anyone other than the parties or their representatives.
13.9 (1) When a publication ban has been made, the hearing and Tribunal file remain open to the public.
(2) No one may publish in any document or broadcast or transmit in any way information or documents subject to a publication ban.
(3) The Tribunal and the court reporting service that transcribes the proceeding shall include a written notice of a publication ban on documents and transcripts to which it applies.
13.10 No order under this part prevents Tribunal staff or panelists from accessing materials in the Tribunal’s file or attending an appearance.
14.1 Unless otherwise provided, an order or direction is effective from the date it is made, whether orally on the record, in an endorsement, in reasons or in a formal order, and whether or not an endorsement or formal order has been issued.
14.2 A single member of the Tribunal assigned to a summary hearing shall not make an order revoking a licensee’s licence or permitting a licensee to surrender a licence.
14.3 With the consent of the parties, a panel assigned to a conduct application under s. 34 of the Act may deal with matters that would otherwise have to be the subject of a capacity application under s. 38 of the Act, and may make any order referred to in s. 40 of the Act.
14.4 (1) Any party may prepare a draft of a formal order.
(2) A formal order shall be in Form 34-38 as appropriate.
(3) A party that has prepared a draft of a formal order may submit it to the Tribunal, before or after a panel makes its decision.
(4) The draft order will be treated as a submission and the panel may amend the order.
(5) Where a formal order is not prepared by any party, it will be prepared by the Tribunal Office.
(6) Any member of a panel may sign the formal order or reasons.
14.5 A panel must give reasons for its final order in any capacity proceeding or appeal. For any other proceeding, the panel is required to give reasons only if a party, within 30 days of the order, has requested them.
14.6 The Registrar, the Registrar’s designate or a panelist on the panel that made the endorsement, order or reasons may correct typographical errors, errors of calculation or similar minor errors.
15.1 (1) Costs may only be awarded against the Law Society,
- in a licensing, conduct, capacity, competence or non-compliance proceeding, where the proceeding was unwarranted, or where the Law Society caused costs to be incurred without reasonable cause or to be wasted by undue delay, negligence or other default; or
- in a proceeding not mentioned in clause (a), where the Law Society caused costs to be incurred without reasonable cause or to be wasted by undue delay, negligence or other default.
(2) Costs may be awarded against the licensee or licence applicant,
- where a determination adverse to the licensee or licence applicant was made; or
- where the licensee or licence applicant caused costs to be incurred without reasonable cause or to be wasted by undue delay, negligence or other default.
(3) Costs may be awarded against an intervenor or third party where the intervenor or third party caused costs to be incurred without reasonable cause or to be wasted by undue delay, negligence or other default.
15.2 When a panel awards costs, it shall consider, but is not bound by, the tariff of fees for services (Appendix A).
15.3 (1) Security for costs may be sought by the Law Society in: a licensing proceeding, if the applicant was previously a licensee of the Law Society in Ontario; a restoration proceeding; a reinstatement proceeding; or a terms dispute proceeding.
(2) On the motion of the Law Society, an order may be made for security for costs as is just where it appears that,
- the applicant has an order against him or her for costs in the same or another proceeding under the Act that remains unpaid in whole or in part;
- in the case of a reinstatement or terms dispute proceeding, there is good reason to believe that the proceeding is without merit and the applicant has insufficient assets in Ontario to pay an order for costs against him or her if an order were to be made; or
- in the case of a licensing or restoration proceeding, there is good reason to believe that the applicant has insufficient assets in Ontario to pay an order for costs against him or her if an order were to be made.
(3) Unless the Tribunal orders otherwise, the applicant against whom an order for security for costs has been made may not, until the security has been given, take any step in the proceeding.
(4) Where the applicant defaults in giving the security required by an order for security for costs, on the motion of the Society, an order may be made dismissing the proceeding.
16.1 (1) A reprimand shall be administered either orally at a hearing open to the public or in writing.
(2) A written reprimand is part of the record of the proceeding.
(3) A reprimand may be administered by any panelist on the panel that ordered the reprimand.
16.2 The administration of a reprimand does not affect the right to appeal the order or the arguments that can be raised on appeal.
17.1 (1) Sections 49.32 and 49.33 of the Act set out when an appeal of a final order may be started.
(2) There is no appeal of an interim or interlocutory order of the Hearing Division, except of an order that finally disposes of an interlocutory suspension or restriction motion, which can be appealed by either party.
17.2 (1) To start an appeal, the appellant must file a notice of appeal (Form 14 or 15) and information sheet (Form 24 or 25) within 30 days of the date of the final order in the Hearing Division proceeding appealed from. After that, an appeal may be started only with the written consent of the respondent to the appeal or with leave.
(2) The motion record for a motion to extend the time to appeal must include a draft notice of appeal.
(3) No later than 10 days after filing the notice of appeal, the appellant must serve and file written confirmation from the court reporting service that all transcripts of the proceeding under appeal not already filed in the Hearing Division, have been ordered.
(4) If otherwise entitled to appeal, the respondent may cross-appeal by serving and filing a notice of cross-appeal (Form 17) no later than 15 days after being served with the notice of appeal. No information sheet is required with a notice of cross-appeal.
17.3 The appellant must perfect the appeal within 60 days of filing the notice of appeal or 60 days from the panel giving its reasons for the final order, whichever comes last. An appeal is perfected by serving and filing the appellant’s appeal book, factum, book of authorities and any transcripts not filed in the Hearing Division proceeding.
17.4 (1) If an appeal is not perfected by the deadline, the respondent may bring a motion to dismiss the appeal for delay.
(2) If the appeal has not been perfected three months from the deadline, the Registrar shall notify the parties that the appeal will be deemed withdrawn if not perfected within 30 days after the date of the Registrar’s notice.
(3) If an appellant to cross-appeal wishes to pursue the cross-appeal even if the appeal is deemed withdrawn, the respondent must notify the Tribunal by 14 days after the date of the Registrar’s notice under Rule 17.4 (2).
(4) If the appeal has not been perfected within 30 days after the date of the Registrar’s notice under Rule 17.4(2), the Registrar shall deem the appeal withdrawn. If the appellant to cross-appeal has advised of a desire to pursue a cross-appeal, a proceeding management conference shall be scheduled to set a timeline for the hearing of the cross-appeal.
(5) The Tribunal may reinstate an appeal or cross-appeal that was deemed withdrawn.
17.5 If the respondent has not filed a cross-appeal, the respondent must serve and file the respondent’s appeal book, factum and book of authorities no later than 14 days before the appeal hearing.
17.6 If the respondent has filed a cross-appeal, the respondent must serve and file the respondent’s appeal book, factum and book of authorities no later than 30 days after the appeal was perfected. The respondent must file a factum and appeal book that cover both the appeal and cross appeal.
17.7 If the respondent has filed a cross-appeal, the appellant must file a factum as respondent by cross-appeal and may file a supplementary appeal book and book of authorities no later than 14 days prior to the appeal hearing.
17.8 No later than five days before the hearing of the appeal, each party must file a compendium containing the documents it intends to refer to in oral argument.
18.1 Except where the respondent consents, an appellant who wishes to introduce evidence at the hearing of the appeal that was not before the Hearing Division must, by notice of motion, make a motion to the Appeal Division to do so.
18.2 The appellant who makes a fresh evidence motion must file, together with the motion record, sufficient copies of the evidence as required by Rule 5.6, each copy in a separate sealed envelope, which shall not be public pending a decision on the motion.
18.3 A motion under this rule will be heard at the beginning of the appeal hearing.
18.4 The parties must be prepared to proceed with the hearing of the appeal on the date scheduled regardless of the disposition of a motion under this rule.
18.5 Where the respondent consents to the introduction of fresh evidence, the evidence may be included and referred to in the parties’ materials, so long as the evidence is clearly identified as fresh evidence that was not before the Hearing Division.
18.6 A fresh evidence motion shall be served and filed at the same time as the appeal is perfected, unless the fresh evidence is discovered after that time.
19.1 (1) The appellant’s appeal book must contain, in consecutively numbered pages with numbered tabs:
- a table of contents listing each document contained in the appeal book and describing each document by its nature and date;
- a copy of the notice of appeal and any notice of cross-appeal, as amended;
- a copy of the order or orders appealed from;
- a copy of all endorsements and reasons of the Hearing Division in the proceeding;
- a copy of the originating process that initiated the proceeding before the Hearing Division;
- a copy of any exhibits that are referred to in the appellant’s factum;
- a copy of any other documents filed with the Hearing Division that are relevant to the appeal and referred to in the appellant’s factum;
- a copy of any directions given at a proceeding management conference in the appeal;
- a copy of any endorsements, orders and reasons of the Appeal Division made in the appeal; and
- where any of the materials are subject to a non-publication order, a copy of the non-publication order.
(2) The respondent’s appeal book must contain, in consecutively numbered pages with numbered tabs:
- a table of contents listing each document contained in the appeal book and describing each document by its nature and date;
- a copy of any exhibits referred to in the respondent’s factum that are not included in the appellant’s appeal book; and
- a copy of any other documents filed with the Hearing Division that are relevant to the appeal and referred to in the respondent’s factum that are not included in the appellant’s appeal book.
(3) Any documents subject to a not public order, non-disclosure order or publication ban must be included in a separate appeal book volume.
19.2 (1) In an appeal factum, references to the transcript of the proceeding before the Hearing Division must be by date, page number and line, while references to exhibits must be by tab and page number in the appropriate appeal book.
20.1 (1) An appellant may start an administrative suspension order appeal by serving on the Law Society and filing with the Tribunal a Notice of Administrative Suspension Order Appeal (Form 16) and an information sheet (Form 25) no later than 30 days from the date the administrative suspension order was deemed to have been received by the appellant.
(2) An administrative suspension order appeal may be started beyond this time limit with consent of the Law Society or leave of the Tribunal.
20.2 Where an administrative suspension order appeal is on consent, the appeal shall be heard in writing. The written consent of the parties and a draft order must be filed with the Tribunal at the time the notice of administrative suspension order appeal is filed or as soon after that as possible. No other material needs to be filed unless directed by the Tribunal.
20.3 (1) The Law Society must file an affidavit or affidavits that set out the factual basis for making the administrative suspension order no later than 30 days after the filing of the Notice of Administrative Suspension Order Appeal.
(2) The appellant must file an affidavit or affidavits that set out the factual basis for the appeal no later than 45 days after the filing of the Notice of Administrative Suspension Order Appeal.
(3) Cross-examination on the affidavits and any reply evidence will take place orally at the appeal hearing, unless otherwise ordered.
(4) No facta need be filed prior to the hearing, unless otherwise ordered.
20.4 The Tribunal Office shall schedule a pre-hearing conference in every administrative suspension order appeal after filing of the affidavits.
21.1 This rule applies to all failure to co-operate applications.
21.2 (1) The Law Society must serve and file a summary affidavit (Form 40) together with the originating process and the information sheet in accordance with Rule 3.
(2) The summary hearing date indicated in the information sheet must be a date no earlier than five weeks after the failure to co-operate filing date.
(3) The information sheet must be in Form 39.
21.3 The respondent must serve and file a summary responding affidavit (Form 41) no later than 14 days after the failure to co-operate filing date.
21.4 (1) No later than 14 days before the summary hearing date the Tribunal will direct whether the hearing will be in writing or oral.
(2) The Tribunal will direct the hearing to be in writing unless the Tribunal concludes there is good reason that the application should be heard by way of an oral hearing, or:
- the respondent’s summary affidavit discloses a potential defence to the allegation of professional misconduct; or
- the respondent has one or more prior finding(s) of professional misconduct on which the Law Society relies on the issue of penalty if professional misconduct is found.
(3) Despite subrules 21.4(2)(a) and (b), the Tribunal may direct a written hearing if requested by the respondent.
21.5 If the Tribunal determines that the hearing will be an oral hearing then this rule has no further application and the summary hearing remains scheduled to be heard orally on the date indicated in the information sheet.
21.6 If the Tribunal determines that the hearing will be a written hearing, then the following applies unless otherwise directed by the Tribunal:
(1) The date of the written hearing is the date indicated in the information sheet.
(2) Each party shall serve and file written submissions and affidavit evidence on finding and penalty, as follows:
- the Law Society no later than 7 days before the date of the written hearing; and
- the respondent no later than 2 days before the date of the written hearing.
(3) On or prior to the written hearing date, the Tribunal may:
- require further evidence and submissions from the parties; or
- direct that the application be heard orally and, if so, schedule a proceeding management conference, in which case this rule has no further application.
(4) At the written hearing, if the hearing panel determines that the respondent has contravened s. 33 of the Act and the respondent does not have a discipline record, the hearing panel:
- will, if the respondent has provided complete answers to the satisfaction of the Law Society within 14 days of the failure to co-operate filing date, and has not previously been invited to attend pursuant to s. 36 of the Act, make an invitation pursuant to s. 36 of the Act and make no costs order;
- will, if the respondent has provided complete answers to the satisfaction of the Law Society by the date of the written hearing, and is not invited to attend, order that the respondent be reprimanded and make no costs order;
- will, if the respondent has not provided complete answers to the satisfaction of the Law Society by the date of the written hearing:
- order an indefinite suspension pending compliance, as well as a one-month definite suspension to begin at the end of the indefinite suspension or any other administrative or disciplinary suspensions in effect or then pending, whichever is later; and
- order the respondent to pay costs in the amount of $1,500 within one year.
- may, if an indefinite suspension is ordered, also order one or more fines or conditional fines.
(5) If the hearing panel determines there are exceptional circumstances warranting a departure from any applicable item listed in paragraph 21.6(4), then that item does not apply and the hearing panel will make such other order as may be appropriate in the circumstances.
Lawyer (20 years and over)
Up to $350 per hour
Lawyer (12 to 20 years)
Up to $325 per hour
Lawyer (11 to 12 years)
Up to $315 per hour
Lawyer (10 to 11 years)
Up to $300 per hour
Lawyer (9 to 10 years)
Up to $285 per hour
Lawyer (8 to 9 years)
Up to $270 per hour
Lawyer (7 to 8 years)
Up to $255 per hour
Lawyer (6 to 7 years)
Up to $240 per hour
Lawyer (5 to 6 years)
Up to $225 per hour
Lawyer (4 to 5 years)
Up to $215 per hour
Lawyer (3 to 4 years)
Up to $205 per hour
Lawyer (2 to 3 years)
Up to $195 per hour
Lawyer (1 to 2 years)
Up to $180 per hour
Lawyer (less than 1 year)
Up to $165 per hour
Lawyer on staff with the Law Society of Ontario, other than Discipline Counsel
Up to $190 per hour
Licensed paralegal and paralegal on staff with the Law Society of Ontario (10 years and more of paralegal experience)
Up to $150 per hour
Licensed paralegal and paralegal on staff with the Law Society of Ontario (5 to 10 years of paralegal experience)
Up to $120 per hour
Licensed paralegal and paralegal on staff with the Law Society of Ontario (1 to 5 years of paralegal experience)
Up to $90 per hour
Up to $90 per hour
Up to $90 per hour
Forensic auditor on staff with the Law Society of Ontario
Up to $190 per hour
Investigator or Complaints Resolution Officer on staff with the Law Society of Ontario
Up to $90 per hour