Close of Pleadings is a very specific time to lawsuit. There are several situations that signify this event. One is when the plaintiff has replied to your defense, or when the time for their reply has expired. Refer to Rule 25.05. Go to CanLII website to see the latest Rules of Civil Procedure (Ontario)
Close of pleadings is important because once a pleadings are closed it allows other steps to begin in a lawsuit. One of the key steps could be that the plaintiff can move to have the action to go to trial or discovery.
You could change (or “amend”) the pleadings before they are closed.
Rule 26.02 says:
A party may amend the party’s pleading,
(a) without leave, before the close of pleadings, if the amendment does not include or necessitate the addition, deletion or substitution of a party to the action;
(b) on filing the consent of all parties and, where a person is to be added or substituted as a party, the person’s consent; or
(c) with leave of the court.
However, there are special exceptions to that, such as adding a party if a limitation period has expired. Overall, for the most part you could make changes before the pleadings closed.
Litigation Help's video on Pleadings: https://youtu.be/6WwGYe2IaGQ
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