- Media Contacts
- Protocol Regarding the Use of Electronic Communication Devices in Court Proceedings
- Policy Regarding Access to Digital Audio Recordings
- Joint Courts' List of Designated Media for Access to Digital Court Recordings
- Court Services Division Policies and Procedures on Public Access to Court Files, Documents and Exhibits
- Directives, Guides, a Glossary and more
Message re COVID-19 (Updated April 8, 2021)
The health and safety of all court users remains a top priority for the Ontario Court of Justice as it continues to provide meaningful access to justice despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Ontario Court of Justice provides essential justice services to the public and remains open during these difficult times.
Following the government’s April 7, 2021 declaration of a state of emergency and issuance of a stay-at-home order, the Court again stresses the importance of limiting in-person attendance at courthouses. The Court is committed to facilitating the conduct of proceedings by remote technology (video or phone) wherever possible and urges all judicial officials, parties and counsel to use remote proceedings unless an in-person appearance is required to ensure meaningful access to justice.
The Court continues to encourage all judicial officials, when exercising their authority, to be flexible and mindful of the position and circumstances of all participants, and to respect why an individual may not be able to attend a court hearing in person. Similarly, the Court encourages counsel and parties to be accommodating when requests for virtual hearings or other arrangements are made by opposing counsel or parties. Judicial officials, counsel and parties are encouraged to consider all reasonable alternatives to conducting a proceeding in person. All participants should review these guidelines prior to attending any virtual court proceeding.
The Court’s decision to continue to accommodate in-person appearances where they are required to ensure meaningful access to justice has been made based on expert advice from the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health. In consultation with public health officials, the Ministry of the Attorney General has implemented a broad range of health and safety measures at all courthouses open to the public. It remains of critical importance that all persons attending courthouses vigilantly comply with the public health and safety protections in place at each court facility. For information about the health and safety measures implemented at Ontario’s courthouses, please see the Ministry of the Attorney General website.
If you are unsure whether your case is being held by video or telephone or in person, please contact your lawyer or, if you do not have a lawyer, contact the courthouse where your case is being heard.
For information about Ontario Court of Justice notices, directives and policies in response to COVID-19, see COVID-19 Notices and Information.
Welcome by the Chief Justice
Daily, our judges and justices of the peace deliver independent, impartial and timely justice to the thousands of people who come before the Ontario Court of Justice in more than 200 locations across the province. This year, the Ontario Court of Justice, the busiest in Canada, will deal with approximately 500,000 adult and youth criminal charges, hear millions of provincial offence matters such as traffic tickets, and serve more than 20,000 families.
To deliver the highest level of service to the people of Ontario, we are committed to making our Court open, accessible and responsive to their needs.
Our website provides a collection of guides, tools and information we hope will be helpful to litigants, students, teachers, members of the media, legal professionals, academics and the public.
Ontario Court of Justice