For trials involving complex commercial litigation on Toronto’s Commercial List, the end may be in sight. In Bank of Montreal v Faibish, 2014 ONSC 2178 the court ordered that a six week trial be conducted electronically. In doing so, Justice Brown rejected certain counsel’s suggestion that the trial proceed using both paper and digital information. In expressing his “profound frustration” at the public court system’s failure to make greater use of modern information technologies, Justice Brown used the example of obsolete 45 rpm’s, 8-Tracks and cassettes in the music industry and said that “paper must vanish from this Court”.
A ringing endorsement for moving the Ontario court system out of the 20th Century and into the modern electronic age. And a warning to counsel who may still be wedded to paper trial briefs … the time has come to digitize.