By Mick Hassell
The question of self-representation for corporations is on the mind of a lot of small business owners who are incorporated and involved in civil litigation in Superior Court as a plaintiff or defendant. Superior Court litigation is slow and expensive. Many small businesses experience litigation burnout, where they spend so much time and money litigating that claims and defences fall apart due to a lack of affordability.
A corporation can represent itself in Small Claims Court, where the limit on any claim is $35,000. Generally, small businesses with claims in the $35,000 – $45,000 range may opt to waive the portion of their claim over $35,000 and proceed in Small Claims Court, which is faster and cheaper than Superior Court.
But when the claims exceed $45,000 they end up in Superior Court. This poses a challenge to small business corporations because rule 15.01(2) says that “a corporation shall be represented by a lawyer, except with leave of the Court.” The expression “leave of the Court” means the Court’s permission.
Therefore, it is possible for a corporation to represent itself in Superior Court with the Court’s permission. By representing itself, it means that a director or officer or other senior member of the corporation will speak on behalf of the corporation.
How does a corporation get the Court’s permission to represent itself? The corporation must bring a motion.
For information on how to bring such a motion, please visit this blog post:
Disclaimer: this blog post is for information and discussion purposes only and is not legal advice.