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Mark Hartman, Successfully Represents Bank of Montreal in Application Seeking a "Vexatious Litigant" Order

Sep 10, 2014

Mark Hartman, a partner with Chaitons LLP representing Bank of Montréal was recently successful in representing the Bank in an application seeking a "vexatious litigant" order. Although such an order is not all that rare, what was unusual is that Mr. Justice Gray of the Superior Court of Justice required a "pre-screening” of an application seeking leave to commence any action, application, motion  or appeal (“Proceeding”) by a judge on an ex parte basis; that is, without notice to the responding party. The effect of such a term requires a vexatious litigant to submit his/her/its material in writing to a Judge and if the said Judge is of the view that leave to commence the proposed Proceeding might be granted then a date for such a leave application will be set and the material seeking leave will only then be served on the responding party. However, in the absence of a basis for seeking leave, the leave application will not proceed, the leave material will not be served on the responding party and the proposed responding party will not need to incur the legal fees which might otherwise be associated with reviewing material seeking leave of the court to commence such a proceeding and to prepare responding material in that regard. Typically, and there have been only two or three instances where such a "pre-screening" order has been granted in Ontario, such an order is typically granted only when a vexatious litigant abuses the leave process. In this case, the "pre-screening" order was obtained at first instance without the necessity of experiencing this type of abuse.

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