Section 80(2) of the MEA (as it read at the time) provides
that, in the case of a candidate who fails to file the required
financial statement by the relevant date, “until the next regular
election has taken place, the candidate is ineligible to be elected
or appointed to any office to which this Act applies”.
 The leading case on relief from forfeiture is Saskatchewan
River Bungalows Ltd. v. Maritime Life Assurance Co., 
2 S.C.R. 490,  S.C.J. No. 59, 1994 CanLII 100. The case
concerned an application for relief from forfeiture arising from
an insurance premium cheque that was mailed but not received
by the deadline for payment. Writing for the court, Major J. held
(at p. 504 S.C.R.):
The power to grant relief against forfeiture is an equitable remedy and is
purely discretionary. The factors to be considered by the Court in the exer-
cise of its discretion are the conduct of the applicant, the gravity of the
breaches and the disparity between the value of the property forfeited and
the damage caused by the breach.
( i) Is relief from forfeiture applicable to the MEA?
 It is far from clear to me that s. 98 of the CJA is available
to provide relief from statutory penalties, including the
non-monetary penalty of ineligibility prescribed by s. 80(2) of the
MEA (as it formerly read). It is clear that something of a practice has arisen in recent years to apply s. 98 of the CJA in this
fashion: Smith v. Toronto District School Board,  O.J. No.
2498, 2015 ONSC 3061 (S.C.J.) and Singh v. Peel District School
Board,  O.J. No. 2497, 2015 ONSC 3092 (S.C.J.) being two
recent examples of this. Other judges have cast considerable
doubt on the ability to rely upon s. 98 of the CJA to relieve
against statutory penalties: Poplar Point First Nation Development Corp. v. Thunder Bay (City) (2016), 129 O.R. (3d) 423,
 O.J. No. 725, 2016 ONSC 457 (S.C.J.), a case not involving the MEA but containing an informative and extensive canvassing of this issue generally.
 The recent cases involving the MEA that have applied
s. 98 of the CJA have done so rely upon Niagara Falls (City) v.
Diodati (2011), 106 O.R. (3d) 154,  O.J. No. 1635, 2011
ONSC 2180 (S.C.J.). In Diodati, the mayor of Niagara Falls filed
financial statements after an election showing that he had
exceeded allowable expenses by $72.74. At the time, s. 92(6) of
the MEA provided for relief from forfeiture of the prescribed
penalty, but only if the candidate was first prosecuted. There
had been no prosecution. Had there been one, inadvertence
would have provided a basis for the court to grant relief from