What should I expect from the Settlement Conference?

Settlement conferences are to take place in every defended action within 90 days after the first Defence is filed.

These conferences are very informal and normally involve the parties, their legal representative (if any), and a Deputy Judge (who will not be gowned). They normally last between 30 minutes to an hour.

The manner in which settlement conferences are conducted will largely depend on the Deputy Judge. Some Deputy Judges will hear the parties summary of the issues and then offer their own thoughts, while others proceed to ask specific questions to the parties or their paralegals right from the beginning.

Having a competent representative beside you at the settlement conference will ensure that you make the most if it, and in many cases, facilitate the prompt resolution of your matter without the need to go to trial. Contact us if you need representation (15 days notice before your settlement conference, if possible).

The purpose of the settlement conference is first and for most, to determine if the case can be resolved without the necessity of a trial.  If the matter cannot be resolved, the presiding Deputy Judge will help the parties narrow the issues and prepare for trial. Procedural orders may be made by the settlement conference judge, such as an order for disclosure of specific documents, or an order to extend or shorten a timeline for a party to complete a certain task.

Related Posts