It depends. (Yes, we’re lawyers.)
Making a claim is a highly subjective situation.
If you’ve broken your ankle after a slip-and-fall at a grocery store, for example, you can make a claim against the party that had care and control of the premises and who owed you a duty to take reasonable care to keep you safe while on the premises.
If you’ve entered into a valid contract with someone and they fail to perform their obligations under it, you can make a claim against them to recover the damages caused by their breach – for example, if you’ve hired and paid a contractor to build your deck at camp (or cottage) and it fails to build that deck or fails to build it in accordance with the specification in the contract, they’re technically in breach of obligations that they agreed to perform.
If you’ve purchased a home and that home is now leaking when it rains, you may be able to make a claim against the vendor if that vendor made certain representations to you at the time of sale, through a seller’s property information statement or otherwise. Vendors owe purchasers certain duties of care if they undertake to make representations about the home they’re selling and, if they make untrue, inaccurate or misleading statements that are then reasonably relied upon by the buyer (to their ultimate detriment) the vendor may be found liable for the damages caused by the negligent misrepresentations and open themselves up to a claim.
If you’ve been dealing with late-night noisy neighbours, who have repeatedly ignored your pleas, and the lack of sleep is now affecting your health and work performance. Maybe they’ve built a fence encroaching on your property. You may have a claim.
We can keep going, but you get the idea. It’s never easy figuring out whether a lawsuit is valid or whether a lawsuit is appropriate in your circumstances. To help you figure all of this out, we are here to help.