As Ontario Courts increasingly move towards accepting electronic filing, litigants will need to follow the prescribed document naming protocols. While you or your firm may have internal naming protocols, to file, you will need to submit using the Court’s requirements. Note that the Court may reject your filing if you do not comply with the naming requirements.

Superior Court of Justice:

See Part C, section 8 of the Consolidated Notice to the Profession, Litigants, Accused Persons, Public and the Media

The notice includes examples of the standard document naming protocol, and stresses that the document names “shall not include firm-specific naming conventions, abbreviations, or file numbers”.

Divisional Court of the Superior Court of Justice:

See Part 8 of the February 18, 2021 updated Notice to the Profession For Court Hearings During COVID-19 Pandemic

The Notice also includes an Appendix which helpfully summarizes the naming conventions by document type.

Ontario Court of Justice

The Ontario Court of Justice has introduced document naming protocols for family law matters for electronic filing, which come into effect June 28, 2021. See the Naming Protocols section in the COVID-19: Scheduling of Family Matters in the Ontario Court of Justice (May 26, 2021).

Court of Appeal for Ontario:

See Part V of the Court’s Guidelines for Filing Electronic Documents Appeal for Ontario

The Guidelines include examples of naming codes and the appropriate character codes to include in document names.

Lawyers and law firms should:

  • regularly check for Court and Tribunal updates to online filing and naming protocols
  • consider updating internal file naming and file storage protocols to maintain copies of materials as filed with the Court and avoid the risk of making a mistake in filing, or relying on the incorrect version of a document
  • train lawyers and staff regarding new naming convention requirements.
Categories: Civil Litigation