Brady asks, where’s the law to protect motor vehicle accident victims?

For immediate release: May 8, 2024     

QUEEN’S PARK – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Bobbi Ann Brady in the Ontario Legislature asked Premier Ford to eliminate civil jury trials when it comes to motor vehicle accidents. Brady said this would help clear out backlogs in the justice system and provide timely compensation to injured victims.

“For those who have been in an automobile accident or know somebody who has been, they are well aware of the added stress that dealing with an insurance company can cause,” Brady said.

Brady’s question was precipitated by the government’s 2020 consultation on eliminating the use of civil juries in Ontario.  Many felt civil jury trials were creating inconsistencies, delays, and unfairness to those involved in motor vehicle accidents and to the average taxpayer. Brady told her colleagues in over 95 per cent of car accident cases, it’s the insurance company for the at-fault driver requesting a jury.

In line with their 2020 consultation, in 2022, the Attorney General’s office drafted legislation to fix the problems, but the legislation never made it to floor of the Legislature. And the consultation results seem to have evaporated.

Also in 2022, a Thunder Bay lawyer lodged an FOI requesting all of the submissions provided to the Attorney General for and against the elimination of civil juries. After 19 months of waiting, the lawyer has received absolutely nothing and only heard that the FOI has been lost, re-assigned, delayed by extension, and re-assigned again.

As of now, with no action, the backlog of civil cases has grown to levels that are out of control. In some regions, jury trials are delayed until the end of 2025or early 2026.  

Brady wondered aloud who or what is influencing the premier’s office and delaying the needed legislative changes. She reminded the Chamber of developers’ undue influence in past government decision making.

“Premier, who is instructing the Attorney General to sit on this important legislation that would clear the backlog and help accident victims?” asked Brady.

Attorney General Minister Doug Downey fielded the question and touted overall actions of the government and outright rejected any possibility of outside influencers.


For more information, contact MPP Bobbi Ann Brady at [email protected] or 519-428-0446