Mediation allows you to settle a small claim out-of-court.
The mediator guides your exchanges with the other party. He or she ensures that you can express yourself and feel heard.
You are entitled to up to 3 free hours with a mediator to attempt to resolve your dispute when you have a file open at the Small Claims Division.
With mediation, you and the other party try to reach an agreement to put an end to your dispute.
Who is eligible
You are eligible when you file a claim at the Small Claims Division of the Court of Québec and the claim is disputed.
You can avail yourself of mediation at any time, even if you initially refused it or if a hearing is already underway.
Before mediation (pre-mediation)
A representative of a centre de justice de proximité will automatically contact you if your claim was filed after May 13, 2021 and is disputed.
The representative can inform and guide you before you enter mediation.
The representative will propose a free pre-mediation meeting to give you information on:
- the mediation process
- the mediation session
- the role of the mediator
- the benefits of mediation, which include actively participating in the search for a solution.
The mediation process is simple.
The mediation session is conducted privately and with minimal formality.
You and the other party are called to appear before a mediator (usually a lawyer or a notary).
The session takes place at your convenience. It can last up to 3 hours.
During the session, the mediator invites you to state your respective positions.
In short, he or she attempts to lead you towards a settlement.
If you come to an agreement during mediation
You must submit to the court office a notice of the settlement or a copy of the agreement, which will then be confirmed by a judge or a special clerk.
If you don't come to an agreement
Your file will be heard in court. Please note that what was said during the mediation session cannot be used as evidence during the hearing.
The Ministère covers the fees of the mediator for a maximum of 3 hours.
The pre-mediation services provided by the centres de justice de proximité are also free.
Find a mediator
The claim was filed and disputed after May 13, 2021
The centre de justice de proximité representative will put you in touch with a mediator after your pre-mediation meeting.
The claim was disputed before May 13, 2021
Contact the Small Claims Division of your local courthouse to find a mediator.