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Who Can Qualify for Legal Aid in Ontario

Legal Aid Ontario provides legal aid to financially eligible low-income Ontarians. When you apply for our services, you must take a financial aptitude test. This test allows us to determine if a client is qualified to provide our services. The mandatory counselling program provides criminal, family law and child protection legal services to low-income Ontarians who do not have a lawyer. What should you bring with you? When you go to the legal aid office, you should take as much information as possible with you. Example: Source: To be eligible for legal aid, you must be financially eligible and your legal case must be covered by Legal Aid Ontario. Below is a table with the current eligibility criteria for applicants: You should also include information about how many family members live in your home and how much money each person earns. A contribution agreement sets out how much you must repay LAO based on the amount of your gross annual family income that exceeds the income limit. You may have to reimburse some or all of your legal fees. If LAO requires you to reimburse a portion of the legal costs, you are entitled to monthly payments. A legal aid certificate is a document that Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) has agreed to devote a certain number of hours of a lawyer`s time to specific legal issues.

You will need to prove that you have a low income and that your legal problem is covered by LAO. If you are financially qualified and have a legal issue that we cover, we will help you pay for a lawyer to represent you. To qualify for legal aid in Ontario, you will have little or no money left after paying for basic needs such as food and shelter. Recipients of social assistance are almost always entitled to legal aid. You may be eligible for legal aid even if you have money in the bank or even if you own a home. Legal Aid Ontario covers a number of legal issues. If a person is financially eligible, the following types of legal aid cases may be covered: specific criminal charges, family law matters (including domestic violence), immigration and refugee matters, landlord and tenant matters, and some civil and final appeals. Standards for Legal Aid Lawyers To ensure that all clients receive quality legal aid services, Legal Aid Ontario has implemented the following eight standards on panel lawyers, which include minimum experience and professional development requirements. The standards were developed in consultation with members of the Refugee Bar Association, the Criminal Law Association and the Family Bar Association, as well as lawyers practising before the Consent and Capacity Board, judges, bar associations and the Law Society of Upper Canada. Legal aid is only available for people with specific legal problems. Depending on your situation, LAO may cover all or part of your legal costs.

Visit LAO`s website to find out how to choose the right legal advisor or search for the names of lawyers who will receive legal aid certificates in the legal field of your choice. If LAO approves your application for a legal aid certificate, the certificate will be sent to you within one to two weeks. If you have provided all the necessary information and documents, you can receive the certificate earlier, even on the same day. Legal aid is a government program that helps low-income people get legal representation and advice. Although Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is publicly funded, it is an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides legal aid in Ontario. When you apply for legal aid, you should have as much information as possible about your case. If you apply over the phone, a representative may refer you to another LAO service, such as a mandatory advisor, or they may refer you to a second representative if it is determined that you need to apply to the certificate program (in which case LAO will pay a lawyer to represent you). To apply for a legal aid certificate, you must prove that you meet LAO`s eligibility rules. This means that you have to show them that you have a low income. You will need to provide information about your income, property, and savings. LAO can provide legal aid to claimants who go beyond various measures of income and assets. They would then need a contribution.

This will be determined on a case-by-case basis. LAO can provide amounts for unavoidable but necessary expenses, such as prescriptions, medical supplies and costs related to access to legal aid. For more information on legal aid eligibility, please see our guidelines: Legal aid is available to people who cannot afford their own legal fees. You must be entitled to legal aid. Not all lawyers work with people who have a legal aid certificate. You need to find a lawyer who is willing to help you and accept your legal aid certificate. If you qualify for legal aid, you can hire a lawyer of your choice. Of course, as mentioned earlier, you need to make sure that the lawyer you choose accepts legal aid cases. You may want to talk to more than one lawyer to find someone you feel comfortable with. Once you have chosen a lawyer, it is unlikely that you will be allowed to change lawyers. To get help with the certificate program, you will need to take a financial test to see if you qualify. If you have income or assets, you may be eligible for a certificate with a contribution agreement.

This means that, depending on your income level, you will have to reimburse LAO for some or all of your legal fees. To be eligible for legal aid, such as compulsory legal aid (for criminal, family protection and child protection cases) and summary legal advice (via the toll-free telephone service), your gross annual family income on 1 April 2020 must: If you do not have a legal representative, it is important to apply for legal aid. If the assets correspond to the estimated costs of the lawyer`s fees, the applicant will be denied any form of legal aid. If the assets are less than the estimated cost of legal aid, the client is offered legal aid, but must make a contribution determined on the basis of solvency. Documents required for criminal charges: Criminal Investigation Form – Crown and Synopsis, if applicable. Where are you applying? Where is the nearest legal aid office? You can call 1-800-668-8258 to find out where the nearest office is, or you can check your telephone directories on white or yellow pages under „Legal Aid” to find the address of the nearest legal aid office. Here is a list of legal aid offices that will help you with the application: If you have income or property, you may be eligible for a certificate with a contribution agreement. This means that you will have to reimburse LAO some or all of your legal fees depending on your income level. About two weeks after you file your application, Legal Aid will inform you in writing of its decision. If your application is accepted, you will receive either a legal aid certificate or a legal aid certificate provided you sign a contribution agreement in which you agree to repay part or all of your legal aid.