News from Legal Aid Ontario - Aide juridique Ontario

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) - Aide juridique Ontario (AJO) is an independent, publicly funded, and publicly accountable non-profit corporation that administers the province's legal aid program.

Legal Aid Ontario's mandate in the Legal Aid Services Act, 1998 is to "promote access to justice throughout Ontario for low-income individuals by means of providing consistently high quality legal aid services in a cost-effective and efficient manner."

For more information on LAO Services see Services Map > Services by Type > Legal Aid Ontario Services

LAO services, such as helping people to obtain or maintain social assistance benefits - are delivered through a network of a number of independent, community-based legal aid clinics, funded by LAO.

LAO also runs a certificate program through its network of legal aid area offices. Here LAO issues certificates, which low-income people use to retain a private lawyer to represent them in proceedings before the criminal or family courts, certain administrative tribunals or immigration/refugee boards. The certificate is the private lawyer's guarantee of payment from LAO, subject to the rates and limitations set out in the legal aid tariff.

LAO also provide duty counsel services - performed by staff and private-sector lawyers - for people who arrive in criminal, family or youth courts without a lawyer.

More information

March 27: Confronting Race and Racism in the Criminal Justice System

When: Monday, March 27, 2017, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. ET

Where: St. Michael's College School, 81A St. Mary Street, Brennan Hall, The Coop, Toronto, ON M5S 1J4

The Rights Advocacy Coalition for Equality (R.A.C.E.) and Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) invite you to our free educational event: Confronting Race and Racism in the Criminal Justice System.

February 24, 2017

Ryan Peck, head of HALCO, wins 2016 Sidney B. Linden Award

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) will honour Mr. Peck at a ceremony in Toronto's Osgoode Hall this February.

January 10, 2017

LAO funding to help Black students in conflict with education system

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is offering two grants of $100,000 each to help address suspensions and expulsions of Black youth in Ontario.

October 24, 2016

Creating a holistic approach to client service – one clinic's story

The Community Legal Clinic—Brant, Haldimand, Norfolk, has been using the Legal Health Check-Up (LHC) to help clients with unrecognized legal problems since participating in the tool's pilot project.

August 29, 2016

Legal Aid Ontario is proud to offer test cases among the services it offers

Test cases are important cases that possibly set a precedent in law. LAO takes on such cases because they can address system-wide issues that affect large numbers of low-income and vulnerable people. Test cases are a practical and realistic way to bring province-wide issues before the courts that would not otherwise happen.

August 05, 2016

Creating a holistic approach to client service – one clinic’s story

The Community Legal Clinic—Brant, Haldimand, Norfolk, has been using the Legal Health Check-Up (LHC) to help clients with unrecognized legal problems since participating in the tool’s pilot project.

August 03, 2016

Legal Aid Ontario developing strategy for racialized communities

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is developing a strategy to identify the legal needs and to protect the legal rights of racialized communities in the justice system.

June 14, 2016

Legal Health Check-Up draws international attention at OECD expert roundtable

The Halton Legal Health Check-Up demonstrates what communities can do to address the gap between legal aid resources and the extent and depth of legal need.

April 19, 2016

Eight factors that contribute to delays in Canada's criminal justice system

This is a summary of Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) CEO David Field's recent contribution to the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs. 

April 04, 2016

Legal aid eligibility threshold increases another six per cent

Thanks to investment by the Province into legal aid, LAO is able to expand access to its services in areas such as family, immigration, refugee, mental health, criminal, and poverty law.

April 01, 2016

Legal Aid Ontario invests $3.3 million in 54 provincial legal aid clinics

The money will go to 54 legal aid clinics to support collaborations between and among clinics and community organizations.

March 15, 2016

LAO outlines its strategy to help mental health clients

Working with the justice and health care sectors, the Strategy will enable legal aid lawyers to approach the intersecting legal issues of mental health clients in a more coordinated fashion.

March 11, 2016

Legal Aid Ontario launches financial eligibility app

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is launching a mobile phone application (app) to help people determine whether they are financially eligible for a legal aid certificate.

December 17, 2015

Community Advocacy & Legal Centre celebrates 35 years of service

The Community Advocacy & Legal Centre (CALC) in Eastern Ontario is celebrating 35 years of serving low-income clients and forging strong community partnerships.

November 10, 2015

Legal Aid Ontario offers new client services for criminal matters at Milton courthouse

Beginning Oct. 16, Legal Aid Ontario is offering an appointment-based service at the Milton courthouse where low-income people can meet with a lawyer for help with their criminal matters.

October 15, 2015

Cy and Ruby's Law: parental recognition for female same-sex partners in Ontario

In Ontario, right now, a woman who is married to a woman who gives birth is not automatically a parent if they use a known sperm donor. Cy and Ruby's Law aims to change that.

October 09, 2015

LAO boosts student legal aid clinics' funding

Ontario's seven Student Legal Aid Service Societies operate out of law schools, allowing students to provide legal services under the supervision of qualified lawyers.

September 21, 2015

Please Register – LAO Domestic Violence Strategy Consultation Sessions

LAO is meeting with domestic violence survivors, partners in the VAW community, and other service providers to develop a strategy to expand and improve legal aid services for domestic violence clients.

August 24, 2015

Expanded coverage for bail services

Legal Aid Ontario is addressing systemic bail issues by expanding its coverage for bail services.

August 13, 2015

Legal Aid Ontario's Domestic violence strategy

This article from Legal Aid Ontario explains why LAO needs a domestic violence strategy.

August 07, 2015