COVID-19 FIRM UPDATE
At SJO Legal Professional Corporation, we are constantly monitoring the COVID-19 situation and we will act and implement necessary cautions accordingly. Our priority is the health and safety of our staff, clients, families and colleagues. As the pandemic continues to evolve, we are committed to joining the global community in limiting its spread while ensuring we remain equipped to support our clients’ most critical legal challenges.
We want our clients to understand that we have in place the business continuity procedures and technology to allow us to operate as we adapt to the consequences of this pandemic with as little disruption as possible.
- SJO Legal and its professionals have invested in technology that allows our professionals to work remotely. Going forward, SJO Legal’s physical office will be closed (subject to necessary meetings) and our professionals will be working remotely and securely until further notice.
- Client meetings and events are being limited, and moved to teleconferencing, videoconferencing or rescheduled, as appropriate.
- We have implemented policies for personnel who become ill or are concerned that they may have been exposed to the virus.
At SJO Legal, we remain focused on providing you with efficient and timely responses to your employment, human rights, and civil litigation needs, including those emerging from COVID-19. While there is much talk of the “unprecedented” circumstances the world is facing, it is important to have perspective, remain calm, and most importantly, follow the hand-washing and hygienic procedures outlined by our health authorities.
Here is some additional information you may want to know:
Will the firm still run if there are closures?
We will continue to do everything we can to remain fully functional throughout this difficult time and we will continue to update our clients immediately as to any new developments.
How can I best communicate with your staff?
Email and telephone remain the best options for communicating with SJO Legal at this time.
What is the court situation? How will we deal with court closures?
Effective Monday, March 16, 2020, all sittings of the Ontario Small Claims Court were suspended until further notice.
As of Tuesday, March 17, 2020, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice operations will be suspended until further notice.
The courts will continue to hear urgent matters during this emergency period, where immediate and significant financial repercussions may result if there is no judicial hearing.
Relevant to workplace law, the Superior Court of Justice will only be hearing urgent and time-sensitive motions and applications involving matters such as:
- Urgent requests for injunctions related to COVID-19;
- Urgent Divisional Court appeals and requests for judicial review related to COVID-19;
- Situations where immediate and significant financial repercussions may result if there is no judicial hearing; and
- Outstanding warrants issued in relation to a Small Claims Court or Superior Court civil proceedings.
Plans will be put in place to reschedule hearing, trials, motions and so forth. We will work with our clients to ensure their matters are brought forward or rescheduled once the courts begin rescheduling court dates.
Effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020, the Ontario Court of Appeal will suspend all scheduled appeals for a period of three (3) weeks (until April 3, 2020).
Please see the below link for the latest updates and more information with respect to court closures and guidelines.
Will clients get billed?
Our billing structure remains uninterrupted at this time. We will continue to send monthly invoices.
If I have to deliver something to my lawyer, how shall I go about it?
Deliveries can continue to be sent to our office address, unless otherwise instructed by a member of our team.