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Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Superior Court of Justice
Cour supérieure de justice (French)
Jurisdiction Ontario
Composition method appointed by the federal government
Authorized by inherent jurisdiction at common law[1]
Decisions are appealed to Court of Appeal for Ontario
Judge term length mandatory retirement by age of 75
Number of positions over 300[2]
Website ontariocourts.ca/scj
Chief Justice of the
Superior Court of Justice
Currently Heather Forster Smith
Since 2002

The Superior Court of Justice (French: Cour supérieure de justice) is a superior court in Ontario. The Court sits in 52 locations across the province, including 17 Family Court locations, and consists of over 300 federally appointed judges.[1]

In 1999, the Superior Court of Justice was renamed from the Ontario Court (General Division). The Superior Court is one of two divisions of the Court of Ontario. The other division is the lower court, the Ontario Court of Justice.[1] The Superior Court has three specialized branches: Divisional Court, Small Claims Court, and Family Court.

The Superior Court has inherent jurisdiction over civil, criminal, and family law matters at common law.[1][3] Although the Court has inherent jurisdiction, the authority of the Court has been entrenched in the Canadian Constitution.[4]

Branches

The Superior Court of Justice has three branches:

Divisional Court

The Divisional Court hears appeals from some judgments and orders of judges of the Superior Court of Justice and reviews or hears appeals from decisions of administrative tribunals. It hears all appeals from a final order of the Superior Court where the award does not exceed $50,000.00. The Divisional Court also hears appeals from Small Claims Court judgments exceeding $2,500.00 (there is no statutory right of appeal from a Small Claims Court judgment of less than $2,500.00). The Divisional Court consists of the Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Justice, who is president of the court, and such other judges of the Superior Court as the Chief Justice designates from time to time. Hearings take place before a panel of three judges except in the case of appeals from the Small Claims Court which take place before a single judge. The Divisional Court is a descendant of the court of the same name in England, which is part of the Queen's Bench division of the English High Court of Justice, and hears certain appeals.

Small Claims Court

The Small Claims Court has jurisdiction in civil matters where the amount in issue does not exceed $25,000.00 exclusive of interest and costs. The monetary jurisdiction of this court is fixed by regulation, rising to the current limit from $10,000 on January 1, 2010. The majority of Small Claims Court matters are heard by deputy judges, lawyers who have been appointed for a period of three years by the Regional Senior Justice to hear such cases. As result of court reform, no new full-time judges have been appointed by the provincial government to preside in Small Claims Court. Proceedings in the Small Claims Court are governed by a codified set of rules contained in O. Reg. 258/98 (as amended), the Rules of the Small Claims Court, instead of the complex Ontario Rules of Civil Procedure.

Family Court

In those areas of Ontario where the Family Court branch of the Superior Court of Justice does not exist, jurisdiction over family law disputes is divided between the Superior Court of Justice and the Ontario Court of Justice. Cases which have divorce or property claims are brought exclusively in the Superior Court, and child protection and adoption cases must be commenced solely in the Ontario Court of Justice. Each of these two courts has jurisdiction over child and spousal support, as well as custody and access claims.

In those places where the Family Court branch of the Superior Court of Justice has been established, there is no divided jurisdiction in family law matters. The Family Court succeeds what was known as the Unified Family Court, which began as a pilot project in Hamilton, in 1977. It has complete jurisdiction over all family law matters in its area, including those matters currently within the jurisdiction of judges of the Provincial Division and the General Division. The Family Court is presided over by a Senior Judge of the Superior Court for the Family Court. The Family Court consists of the Chief Justice of the Superior Court, the Associate Chief Justice (Family Court) the Senior Judge of the Family Court, and any other Superior Court Judge as assigned by the Chief Justice or designate.

Administrative structure

The Superior Court consists of the Chief Justice of the Superior Court, the Associate Chief Justice of the Superior Court, eight Regional Senior Judges, the Senior Judge of the Family Court, and over 300 federally appointed judges. In addition, there are a number of supernumerary judges appointed as required from time to time.

The Chief Justice is responsible for the sittings of the Court and assigning judicial duties, as well as other matters relating to the governance and administration of the Court. The Associate Chief Justice, eight Regional Senior Judges, and the Senior Judge of the Family Court form the Executive of the Court, which provides advice to the Chief Justice on policy and governance. Together, the Chief Justice and the members of the Executive work to ensure the proper administration of the Court.

Ontario is divided into eight regions for judicial administration. Each region is headed by a Regional Senior judge who exercises the powers and performs the duties of the Chief justice in that region.[5]

There are also provincially appointed judicial officers who exercise certain functions in the superior court. These include masters, assessment officers and registrars.

Case Management Masters are provincially appointed judicial officers with the authority to hear and determine certain matters in civil cases, including motions, pre-trials, and case conferences. Masters and case management masters also adjudicate construction lien trials, mortgage and general references, provide dispute resolution services, and serve as registrars in bankruptcy under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.[6]

Orders made by masters have the same force and effect as judges' orders although they may be appealed to a judge. Masters are appointed and paid by the provincial government. Masters have existed in the courts of Ontario since 1837.

Regions

Regions[7]
Central East Region Central South Region Central West Region East Region
Barrie

Bracebridge
Cobourg
Durham
Lindsay
Newmarket
Peterborough

Brantford

Cayuga
Hamilton
Hamilton Family Court
Kitchener
Simcoe
St. Catharines
Welland

Brampton

Guelph
Milton
Orangeville
Owen Sound
Walkerton

Belleville

Brockville
Cornwall
Kingston
Kingston Family Court
L’Orignal
Ottawa
Napanee
Pembroke
Perth
Picton

Northeast Region Northwest Region Southwest Region Toronto Region
Cochrane

Gore Bay
Haileybury
North Bay
Parry Sound
Sault Ste. Marie
Sudbury
Timmins

Fort Frances

Kenora
Thunder Bay

Chatham

Goderich
London
Sarnia
St. Thomas
Stratford
Windsor
Woodstock

Current judges[8]

Position / Name Region Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Justice Heather Forster Smith N/A
Associate Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Justice Frank Marrocco[9] N/A November 2, 2005 Paul Martin Gowling Lafleur Henderson
Senior Judge of the Family Court George Czutrin[10] N/A Court of Justice (1993 to 2006)
Private practice (1978 to 1993)

Central East Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Michelle Fuerst[11] (Newmarket) 2002 (Judge) Gold & Fuerst
Judge Stephen T. Bale[12] (Oshawa) December 18, 2013 Sole practitioner (2001 to 2013)
Stewart, Mitchell and Macklin (1989 to 2001)
Judge Laura A. Bird
Justice R. Cary Boswell[13] December 14, 2007 Stephen Harper Craig Boswell McDermot
Mark Scharf, Barrister & Solicitor
Justice Robert Charney[14] February 27, 2015 Stephen Harper General Counsel, Constitutional Law Branch
Justice J. Christopher Corkery
Justice Joseph Di Luca October 20, 2016[15] Justin Trudeau Di Luca Dann LLP
Justice Guy P. Di Tomaso
Justice Peter A. Douglas[16] (Barrie) October 2, 2013 Stephen Harper Stewart Esten (1988 to 2013)
Justice Mark L. Edwards
Justice Jane Ferguson
Justice Cory A. Gilmore[17] (Newmarket) March 2008 Gilmore and Gilmore
Justice Drew S. Gunsolus
Justice Susan E. Healey
Justice Myrna L. Lack
Justice Sharon Lavine[18] June 17, 2016 Justin Trudeau Greenspan Humphrey Lavine (1993 to 2016)
Justice Barry G. A. MacDougall
Justice John R. McCarthy
Justice Michael K. McKelvey
Justice Edwin B. Minden Jean Chrétien
Justice Gregory M. Mulligan
Justice Anne Mullins
Justice Paul W. Nicholson [19] March 7, 2014 Stephen Harper
Justice Hugh K. O’Connell
Justice Elizabeth Quinlan
Justice David Salmers
Justice Alexander Sosna
Justice Phillip Sutherland[20] February 27, 2015
Justice Mary E. Vallee
Justice Thomas M. Wood
Justice Susan Woodley[21] February 27, 2015


Ontario Superior Court of Justice - Family Division
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Justice Richard T. Bennett
Justice Laura E. Fryer
Justice Ronald P. Kaufman
Justice David Jarvis[22] February 27, 2015
Justice Fred Graham
Justice Jayne E. Hughes
Justice Alan P. Ingram
Justice John P. L. McDermot
Justice Heather A. McGee
Justice J. Scott McLeod[23] June 26, 2015 Justin Trudeau McLeod, Barrister & Solicitor (2001 to 2015)
McQuarrie, Hill, Walden, Chester in Lindsay (1982 to 1983)
McQuarrie, Hill (1983 to 2000)
Justice Clifford S. Nelson
Justice Lydia M. Olah
Justice Allan R. Rowsell
Justice Margaret A. C. Scott
Justice D. Roger Timms
Justice Ramona A. Wildman

Central South Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Harrison S. Arrell[24] November 23, 2006
Justice Catrina D. Braid
Justice David A. Broad
Justice Kim A. Carpenter-Gunn
Justice David L. Edwards 2012[25]
Justice Patrick J. Flynn
Justice Andrew J. Goodman
Justice Donald J. Gordon
Justice James R. H. Turnbull [1] 2005
Justice R. John Harper
Justice Cheryl Lafrenière
Justice Richard A. Lococo
Justice Thomas R. Lofchik
Justice Theresa Maddalena
Justice Jane A. Milanetti
Justice Robert J. Nightingale 2012[26]
Justice Dale Parayeski
Justice James A. Ramsay[27] January 29, 2007 Stephen Harper Crown Attorney (1981 to 2007)
Justice Robert B. Reid
Justice Robert D. Reilly
Justice Antonio Skarica 2012[28]
Justice James W. Sloan [29] (Kitchener) March 7, 2011 Stephen Harper Sloan Strype (1975 to 2011)
Justice Paul R. Sweeny
Justice Gerald E. Taylor
Justice Linda M. Walters
Justice Alan C. R. Whitten
Ontario Superior Court of Justice - Family Division
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Justice Caroline E. Brown
Justice Grant A. Campbell
Justice Deborah L. Chappel[30] (Hamilton) June 2011 Stephen Harper Sole practitioner (2006 to 2011)
Justice Lene Madsen 2016[31]
Justice Wendy L. MacPherson
Justice Alex Pazaratz
Justice J. Wilma Scott

Central West Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Peter A. Daley
Justice Irving W. André November 2, 2012[26] Stephen Harper Court of Justice (2002 to 2012)
Defence lawyer (1994 to 2002)
Crown attorney (1991 to 1994)
Justice William M. Le May
Justice Deena F. Baltman 2005
Justice Gordon D. Lemon[32]
Justice Kofi N. Barnes
Justice Lucy K. McSweeney[33] June 17, 2016
Justice Thomas A. Bielby
Justice Gisele M. Miller
Justice Ivan S. Bloom [34] December 16, 2014 Public Prosecution Service of Canada (1980 to 2014)
Dubeck & Dudzic (1977 to 1980)
Justice Kendra D. Coats
Justice David Price
Justice Clayton Conlan[35] December 3, 2011 Stephen Harper
Justice Leonard Ricchetti
Justice Steve A. Coroza[36][37] April 2013 Stephen Harper Court of Justice (2009 to 2013)
Public Prosecution Service of Canada (1998 to 2009)
Justice Fletcher Dawson
Justice Lorna-Lee Snowie
Justice Meredith Donohue
Justice John R. Sproat
Justice Robert M. Thompson
Justice Michael G. Emery[38] 1989 (High Court)
Stephen Harper Simpson Wigle LAW, LLP (1991 to 2013)
Emery, Rekai & Johnston
Mitchell, Schuller & Company (1981 to 1984)
Justice Jamie K. Trimble[39] (Milton) December 16, 2013 Stephen Harper Hughes Amys LLP (1989 to 2013
Justice E. Ria Tzimas 2012[28]
Justice Dale F. Fitzpatrick 2012[40]
Justice Francine E. Van Melle
Justice Joseph M. Fragomeni
Justice Michael R. Gibson
Justice Jennifer Woollcombe[41] February 27, 2015
Justice Douglas K. Gray
Justice Cynthia Petersen 2017[42]

East Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge James E. McNamara
Justice Brian W. Abrams
Justice Catherine D. Aitken
Justice Robert N. Beaudoin
Justice Michel Z. Charbonneau
Justice Sylvia Corthorn
Justice Adriana Doyle[43] February 27, 2015
Justice Tracy Engelking 2016[31]
Justice Charles T. Hackland[44] 2003
2008 (Reg. Snr. Judge)
Gowling LaFleur Henderson
Justice Martin S. James
Justice John M. Johnston
Justice Paul B. Kane
Justice Stanley J. Kershman
Justice Marc R. Labrosse[45] January 31, 2014
Justice Laurie Lacelle[46] February 27, 2015
Justice Ronald M. Laliberté
Justice Rick Leroy
Justice Calum U. C. MacLeod[47] June 17, 2016
Justice Helen K. MacLeod-Beliveau
Justice Robert L. Maranger
Justice Colin D. A. McKinnon
Justice Hugh R. McLean
Justice Graeme Mew
Justice Julianne A. Parfett [48] January 29, 2007 Stephen Harper Crown Attorney (1987 to 2007)
Justice Robert Pelletier
Justice Kevin B. Phillips
Justice Michael Quigley
Justice Lynn D. Ratushny
Justice Timothy D. Ray
Justice Pierre E. Roger
Justice Robert F. Scott
Justice Elizabeth C. Sheard
Justice Robert J. Smith
Justice Wolfram Tausendfreund
Justice Giovanna Toscano Roccamo
Justice Gary W. Tranmer
Justice Nathalie Champagne[49] May 24, 2018 Justin Trudeau Legal Aid Ontario (Director General for the Eastern District)


Ontario Superior Court of Justice - Family Division
Position Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Justice Johanne Lafrance-Cardinal
Justice Maria T. Linhares de Sousa
Justice V. Jennifer Mackinnon
Justice Timothy Minnema
Justice Kenneth E. Pedlar
Justice Cheryl Robertson
Justice Mark P. Shelston
Justice Anne C. Trousdale

Northeast Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Robbie D. Gordon
Justice Ian S. McMillan
Justice R. Dan Cornell
Justice David J. Nadeau
Justice John S. Poupore
Justice M. Gregory Ellies[50] October 22, 2010
Justice Annalisa S. Rasaiah
Justice Edward E. Gareau
Justice Robert A. Riopelle
Justice Louise L. Gauthier
Justice Paul U. Rivard
Justice Patricia C. Hennessy
Justice Robin Y. Tremblay
Justice Norman M. Karam
Justice George T. Valin
Justice Edward J. Koke
Justice Michael N. Varpio 2012[25]
Justice Alexander D. Kurke
Justice W. Larry Whalen
Justice Cindy A. M. MacDonald
Justice James A. S. Wilcox

Northwest Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Bonnie R. Warkentin
Justice Helen M. Pierce
Justice F. Bruce Fitzpatrick
Justice Terrence A. Platana
Justice John S. Fregeau
Justice Douglas C. Shaw[51] November 2, 2005
Justice W. Danial Newton[52] December 16, 2014 Stephen Harper CARREL+Partners LLP (1984 to 2014)
Justice G. Patrick Smith

Southwest Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Bruce G. Thomas[53] 2008 (judge)
2017(regional)
Judge David Aston
Judge Christopher Bondy
Judge Scott K. Campbell
Judge Thomas J. Carey
Judge John A. Desotti
Judge Joseph M. W. Donohue
Judge Marc A. Garson[54] (London) October 2, 2013 Crown counsel with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General
Judge Jonathon C. George[55] June 17, 2016
Judge Kelly A. Gorman
Judge A. Duncan Grace
Judge Pamela L. Hebner
Judge Thomas A. Heeney 1998[56]
Judge Peter B. Hockin
Judge J. Paul R. Howard
Judge George W. King[57] December 2014 Stephen Harper McTague Law (1982 to 2014)
Judge Ian F. Leach 2012[56]
Judge Lynne Leitch
Judge Michael D. McArthur 2017[58]
Judge Alissa K. Mitchell[59] January 31, 2014
Judge Johanne N. Morissette
Judge Kirk W. Munroe
Judge Terrence L. J. Patterson
Judge Renee M. Pomerance[60] November 23, 2006
Judge Helen A. Rady
Judge Russell M. Raikes
Judge Lynda Templeton
Judge Gregory J. Verbeem[61] March 7, 2014
Ontario Superior Court of Justice - Family Division
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Judge Denise M. Korpan 2012[62]
Judge Margaret A. McSorley
Judge Henry Vogelsang
Judge Victor Mitrow

Toronto Region

Ontario Superior Court of Justice
Position / Name Date Appointed Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Regional Senior Judge Geoffrey B. Morawetz[63] 2005 (Judge)
December 18, 2013 (Snr J.)
Goodmans LLP (1999 to 2005)
Judge Freya Kristjanson[64] June 17, 2016 Justin Trudeau Wardle Daley Bernstein Bieber LLP (2015 to 2016)
Cavaluzzo Shilton McIntyre & Cornish LLP (2009 to 2014)
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (1989 to 2008)
Judge Jasmine T. Akbarali[31] 2016
Judge Emile R. Kruzick
Judge Suhail A.Q. Akhtar [2] 2014
Judge Thomas R. Lederer[65] January 29, 2007 Davis & Co
Judge Beth A. Allen
Judge Sidney N. Lederman
Judge Sandra Nishikawa [3] January 19, 2018 Justin Trudeau
Judge Wailan Low
Judge P. Andras Schreck[66] June 23, 2017 Justin Trudeau Ontario Court of Justice (2014 to 2017)
Schreck Presser LLP and Schreck & Greene (1998 to 2014)
Judge Ian A. MacDonnell
Judge Edward P. Belobaba
Judge Wendy M. Matheson
Judge Carole J. Brown
Judge J. David McCombs
Judge Michael F. Brown
Judge Thomas J. McEwen
Judge Kenneth L. Campbell
Judge John B. McMahon
Judge Peter J. Cavanagh 2016[31]
Judge Faye E. McWatt
Judge Victoria R. Chiappetta 2012[26]
Judge Ruth E. Mesbur
Judge Robert A. Clark
Judge Anne M. Molloy
Judge Michael Code
Judge J. Patrick Moore[67] November 2, 2005 Paul Martin Rogers Moore
Judge Barbara A. Conway
Judge Edward M. Morgan June 22, 2012[68] Stephen Harper Davies, Ward & Beck
Professor at University of Toronto
Judge David L. Corbett
Judge Frederick L. Myers January 31, 2014 Stephen Harper Goodmans LLP (2003 to 2014)
Osler, Hoskin, and Harcourt LLP (1986 to 2002)
Judge Katherine B. Corrick
Judge Bonnie L. Croll
Judge Alfred J. O’Marra[69] December 14, 2007 Stephen Harper
Judge Brian P. O’Marra
Judge James F. Diamond
Judge Victor Paisley
Judge Grant R. Dow
Judge Laurence A. Pattillo
Judge Todd Ducharme
Judge Michael A. Penny
Judge Tamarin M. Dunnet
Judge Paul M. Perell
Judge Sean F. Dunphy
Judge Craig Perkins
Judge Mario D. Faieta
Judge Andra Pollak
Judge Stephen E. Firestone[70] April 26, 2013 Stephen Harper Lackman, Firestone Law Offices (1995 to 2013)
Iacono, Brown, Barristers & Solicitors (1990 to 1995)
Sommers & Roth (1988 to 1990)
Judge Michael G. Quigley
Judge Maureen D. Forestell[71] January 29, 2007 Stephen Harper Department of Justice (1984 to 1986)
Private practice (1987 to 2007)
Judge Harriet E. Sachs
Judge E. Eva Frank
Judge Shaun S. Nakatsuru 2017 Justin Trudeau Judge of Ontario Court of Justice (2006 to 2017)
Ontario Crown Counsel (2003 to 2006)
College of Physicians (2000 to 2003)
Nakatsuru & Doucette (1988 to 2000)

[4][5]

Judge Gertrude F. Speigel
Judge Nola E. Garton
Judge Nancy J. Spies
Judge Benjamin T. Glustein
Judge Suzanne M. Stevenson
Judge Robert F. Goldstein 2012[56]
Judge Elizabeth M. Stewart
Judge Susanne R. Goodman
Judge Glenn A. Hainey [6] 2011 Stephen Harper Gowlings Lafleur Henderson LLP
Judge Katherine E. Swinton [7] 1997 Jean Chretien Law Professor, York University
Law Professor, U of T
Judge Alison Harvison Young
Judge Edward F. Then[72] 1989 (High Court)
Crown Attorney (1972 to 1989)
Judge Julie A. Thorburn
Judge Kenneth G. Hood [73] May 5, 2015 Stephen Harper Schneider Ruggiero LLP (2010 to 2015)
Lawrence Lawrence Stevenson LLP (2004 to 2010)
Judge Darla A. Wilson[74] December 14, 2007 Stephen Harper Lawson McGrenere LLP
Borden Ladner Gervais
Judge Carolyn J. Horkins
Judge Jane E. Kelly
Judge Herman J. Wilton-Siegel
Judge P. Kiteley
Judge Kelly P. Wright [75] 2008 Stephen Harper Ontario Crown Attorney (1996 to 2008)
Judge Patrick J. Monahan[76] May 19, 2017 Justin Trudeau Deputy Attorney General of Ontario

Supernumerary Judges

Position / Name Date Appointed / Supernumerary Since Appointed By Prior Position(s)
Justice J. Bryan Shaughnessy Jan 1, 2014 (sup.)[77]
Justice Randolph Mazza (supernumerary) January 6, 2011 (sup.)[78]
Justice Bruce Durno July 31, 2013 (sup.)[79] 1989 (High Court)
Justice Bruce A. Glass (Oshawa) July 31, 2014 (sup.)[80]
Judge Steven Rogin April 11, 2014 (sup.)[81]
Justice C. Stephen Glithero
Justice Mary Jo McLaren
Judge Michael R. Dambrot (supernumary)[8] Ministry of Attorney General, Director of Crown Operations
Justice S. Casey Hill 1995 (appt)
Justice Nancy M. Mossip 2013 (Sup.)
Justice Silja S. Seppi Jan 8, 2014[82] (sup.)
Justice Bonnie J. Wein
Justice Jennifer A. Blishen (Family Division)
Judge Susan G. Himel
Judge David G. Stinson
Judge Nancy L. Backhouse
Justice Robert G. S. Del Frate
Justice Joseph R. Henderson December 31, 2017 (sup)[83]
Judge Todd L. Archibald
Judge Mary A. Sanderson June 20, 2016 (sup.)[84]
Judge Arthur M. Gans
Justice Margaret Eberhard July 11, 2013 (sup.)[85]

Past judges

References

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