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Which lawyers accept legal aid?

Region: Ontario Answer # 850

Not all lawyers accept legal aid work, so if you have a Legal Aid Certificate, you need to find a lawyer who takes legal aid cases.

There are many considerations when choosing a lawyer. You should try to find a lawyer who has experience with your kind of legal problem. It is important to note that not all lawyers handle every type of case. Many lawyers restrict their practice to a particular area of law and do not handle other types of legal work. For example, most real estate lawyers would not handle divorces.  Before you look for a lawyer, it is a good idea to determine what type of legal issue you have, so that you know what type of lawyer you will need.

If English is not your first language, you should choose a lawyer who is fluent in your language and who will help you understand your choices.

Where to find a lawyer

There are a number of ways to find a lawyer:

1. Search for a participating lawyer on the Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) website. You can search by location, area of law, language, or for a specific lawyer. The names of ten lawyers matching your requirements will be given.

2. Contact an LAO office in your area. They may be able to provide you with a list of lawyers who take legal aid cases.

3. Ask your co-workers, friends, and family if they can refer a lawyer to you. If the lawyer handles your type of legal issue, you may be able to hire the lawyer to help you.

4. Contact the Law Society Referral Service (LSRS), which will give you the name of a lawyer or paralegal who will provide a free consultation of up to 30 minutes to help you determine your rights and options. Visit The Law Society of Ontario, Referral Service for more information.

5. Contact a lawyer on this website. The large number of topics offered allows you to zero-in on the information you need, and then be connected to a lawyer or agency who is an expert with your exact issue. Simply go to the specific answer you are interested in, and click on the lawyer or agency hotlink at the end of, or within the body of the answer. In addition, you can also click on the Links section of this website for further assistance.

If you have been abused, a shelter may be able to refer a lawyer to you. Call or visit your local women’s shelter to ask for a list of lawyers who work on family cases like yours. In the Metro Toronto Area, you can access the Assaulted Women’s Helpline at (416) 863-0511 or, visit awhl.org.

Once you have the names of a few lawyers you may want to work with, call and ask if they will take your case. Spend a few minutes talking to the lawyer or someone in the lawyer’s office. Make a list of all the questions you want to ask to help you decide if this lawyer might be right for you. If you are not comfortable, try another lawyer until you find one that does understand you.

Once you have chosen a lawyer, it is unlikely that you will be allowed to change lawyers.

For more information on finding and working with your lawyer, refer to the Find a Lawyer or Paralegal section of Legal Line.  For more information about legal aid in Ontario, visit Legal Aid Ontario.

 


 



								

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