2023 ONSC 648
The parties in this matter were married in August 1995 and separated in June 2019. They had two children, 18 and 21 years old.
The issue was that pertaining to equalization of net family property, where the parties owned “significant assets”. The mother brought this motion for the release of her 50% interest in the net proceeds from the sale of the matrimonial home. The father’s affidavit response stated that he did not oppose the motion, however, he attempted to use this motion date to bring a cross-motion for the release of his 50% interest in the net proceeds instead.
The father’s cross-motion was not accepted for filing with the Court as it did not comply with the Court’s Practice Directions.
The Court found that the mother would be disadvantaged if she were required to argue the father’s cross-motion that day, seeing as there had been page limits imposed on her materials for her motion. Furthermore, the father’s request was a contentious issue.
The requirement for parties to comply with court procedures was highlighted, and the Court found that the father was attempting to unreasonably “jump the queue” in trying to bring his cross-motion to the court’s attention on the mother’s motion date.
The Court pointed out that parties should aim to settle dispute out-of-court, seeking “reasonable compromise whenever possible”.
Considering the fact that litigants must act reasonably, in a cost-effective manner, here, based on the father’s “unreasonable actions” and non-acceptance of the mother’s Offer to Settle, the Court awarded costs in the amount of $7,500 to the mother.