A judgment is considered to be “by default” when the defendant does not file a defence and takes no part in the trial.
At the Small Claims Division, a judgment by default may be rendered as soon as the 20-day time limit from the date of the application has expired. This is the time allowed for the defendant to choose an option, for example to defend the case on the merits.
A judgment by default may also be rendered during the hearing or after the case has been taken under advisement, if the defendant failed to appear at the hearing. In some cases it may be rendered by the special clerk, without a hearing, after examining the documents in the record.
A defendant who has a valid reason for failing to indicate an option within the time limit or failing to appear at the hearing can apply for a revocation of judgment.