Pleadings

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are pleadings?

    Pleadings are the formal claim or defence to a civil legal action. In a divorce proceeding, the pleadings consist of the Petition for Divorce, Answer, and Reply (if any). If a proceeding was started with a Petition, additional pleadings would be the Answer, or Answer and Petition for Divorce, and Reply (if any). In a proceeding started with a Statement of Claim, the other pleadings are the Statement of Defence, and Reply (if any). In proceedings started with a Notice of Motion to Vary or a Notice of Application or Notice of Application to Vary those documents are all the pleadings.

  • What is the difference between open and closed pleadings?

    When a plaintiff files a claim, the defendant has a certain amount of time to respond to the claim with an answer or defence. Once the defendant has filed their answer or defence, the plaintiff has a certain amount of time to respond.

    Pleadings are considered open when there is still time for the plaintiff to file a response to the defendant. Once the timeline has expired and any defendant who has failed to file an answer/defence has been noted in default, the pleadings are closed.