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Frequently asked questions
Small Claims Court in Ontario will hear claims for money or personal property at a value of $35,000 or less (not including interest or costs). If you are looking to sue for an amount higher than $35,000 you will need to file your claim with the Superior Court of Justice and follow the civil litigation process instead.
In Ontario, the Small Claims Court hears claims for money owed under a variety of agreements, including unpaid accounts for goods or services, unpaid rent, and loans. Damages can also be claimed, including property damage, personal injuries, and damages for breaches of contract.
Almost every step in Small Claims Court is associated with a particular form. Some of the forms you may be required to use in the Small Claims Court process include: Plaintiff’s Claim, Defendant’s Claim, List of Proposed Witnesses, Offer to Settle, Terms of Settlement, Summons to Witness and Notice of Default of Payment. To view a complete list of fillable electronic forms that can be printed, visit Rules of the Small Claims Court Forms.
The landlord can increase the rent once every 12 months. The landlord has to give the tenant a 90 day written notice of the increase. There are some exemptions to these rules, for example tenants paying rent-geared-to-income in a social housing unit.
If a tenant moves out on or after September 1, 2021, you can file an application with the LTB to collect money for unpaid rent or compensation, NSF charges, utilities, costs related to substantial interference or damages up to 12 months after the tenant leaves. For more information, read the brochure: Collecting Money a Former Tenant Owes.
It is the landlord’s responsibility to maintain the unit in a good state of repair, even if:
- the tenant was aware of problems in the unit before they moved into it
- the lease says that the tenant is responsible for maintenance
However, the tenant is responsible for keeping the unit clean, up to the standard that most people consider ordinary or normal cleanliness. The tenant is also responsible for repairing or paying for any damage to the rental property they caused or caused by their guests or another person living in the rental unit.