Legal Aid Ontario (LAO)

The Legal Aid Services Act, 2020 has come into force

The LASA 2020 was proclaimed on October 18, 2021.  Under this new legislation, LAO has established rules and policies to manage and administer legal aid.

LAO Second Chair program to allow in-firm mentorships for mentees from equity-seeking groups

  • March 19, 2021

Legal Aid Ontario has introduced a pilot expansion of its Second Chair mentorship program, a program which allows new and mid-career lawyers to serve as “second chair” with experienced counsel and work on legal aid cases. This pilot expansion will permit in-firm mentorship of lawyers from equity-seeking groups. Additionally, LAO will endeavour to match mentees with mentors based on identification, location and area of law, if requested.

Legal Aid Ontario Expedited Rates for Bail Reviews

  • April 17, 2020

LAO as a temporary and emergency measure to address the COVID pandemic will provide expedited transcript rates for bail reviews. These expedited rates will be offered as an inherent disbursement on the billing portal. LAO hopes to have made the necessary changes to the billing portal by early next week. Recall that LAO has recently, as a response to the COVID pandemic, waived any assessment of merit in issuing bail review certificates.

LAO Duty Counsel for In-Custody Client

  • April 14, 2020

In addition to the Temporary Billing Changes above for the bar as a whole, LAO will also provide live duty counsel legal advice for in-custody clients with upcoming court appearances and without legal representation for criminal matters starting April 14, 2020.