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More Ontario Legal Aid

October 23, 2014 permalink

Legal Aid is increasing the amount of time their lawyers can spend with clients on child protection cases.

Before getting excited that this will protect families, remember that legal aid lawyers and CAS serve the same paymaster. In the past this has meant incentives to get the client to plead guilty in criminal matters. In child protection the added time may be used to convince parents to part with their children [1] [2].



Families facing child protection proceedings to get more time with their legal aid lawyers

TORONTO, Oct. 20, 2014 /CNW/ - Starting Nov. 3, 2014, Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) will provide more time for lawyers to help clients who are involved in a court proceeding with a child protection agency. Clients and their lawyers may use this additional time to address legal issues by taking steps such as: bringing forward motions, participating in settlement negotiations and conducting in-depth file reviews – all of which support earlier resolution and avoid unnecessary trials. The increased hours for child protection matters is one of a number of programs that LAO is developing with the use of $30 million in additional provincial funding for family law and community legal clinics.


"I applaud the work Legal Aid Ontario is doing to strengthen the family law services it provides. Improving the delivery and scope of family law services is a vital step toward building a more holistic family justice system in Ontario."

Madeleine Meilleur
Attorney General

"LAO is pleased to expand services for one of LAO's highest priority client groups. Parents who have had their children taken away are among the most vulnerable clients who appear at family court."

John McCamus
LAO Chair


  • LAO's family law strategy aims to reduce the number of families who go to court without a lawyer and to provide families with holistic and integrated services.
  • Each year, LAO allocates approximately $70 million to family law services to help more than 125,000 low-income Ontarians.
  • These family law services include summary legal advice, mediation, assistance from lawyers at family law information centres and family law service centres, settlement conferences and representation by private practice lawyers.


SOURCE Legal Aid Ontario

For further information: Josephine Li, Communications advisor, Phone: 416-979-2352 ext. 6015, Email: or

Source: CNW