This article deals only with Ontario Small Claims court matters.
There are several occasions where you may want to arrange payment terms with a creditor.
These times would be at various stages of a debt owing:
For the purpose of this article, I will deal with
For the purpose of this article, you have just been served with a Plaintiff’s Claim and you have filed a defence for all or part of the Claim that was issued against you. You owe the money, or part of it, but you don’t have all the funds available to pay the debt in full. You now have a window of opportunity to try to negotiate a settlement and arrange a payment plan. You will want to put the negotiated settlement and payment plan in writing in the form of Terms of Settlement’ so that the matter can be dealt with efficiently and effectively.
As always, the best time to have gotten a professional involved was at the outset before a Plaintiff’s Claim was issued and served on you. However, it is not too late to hopefully settle this matter to avoid additional court time and expense. An experience paralegal may be able to negotiate a settlement whereby you would pay less than the amount owing and/or being claimed and to arrange a payment plan. The settlement and payment plan would be put in writing and signed by all parties in order to protect both you and the creditor.
The benefit of acting promptly is that you may be able to avoid having to attend court for a settlement conference.
Settling a matter requires skill and experience which should always include written Terms of Settlement in order to protect you from a creditor coming back after you again for more money. I recommend that you consult with an experience paralegal or lawyer before doing your own settlement.
A later article on payment terms will deal with the issue:
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