Legal Aid

Institutional Addresses & General Inquiry Numbers

Snow UTA Decision

REGIONAL CONTACT LIST for LAO staff (updates ongoing)
April 9th Legal Aid Ontario announced further emergency temporary
changes to their billing and certificate coverage in order to address
the continuing challenges of the COVID pandemic. 
 
In brief, below are changes: 
 
*Extending billing deadlines when submitted late as a result of the 
COVID-19 pandemic, billing deadlines will be extended for accounts due
between March 16, 2020 and September 30, 2020 
*Expanding the criteria for exceptional circumstances for 
discretionary payments beyond the applicable tariff  to include
additional work that  was required as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic 
*Treating teleconference and video appearances as physical 
appearances for the purposes of LAO billing rules 
*Allowing lawyers to bill a criminal law certificate as a block fee, 
or by the hourly tariff 
*Further information for Temporary Absence Permit certificate 
coverage including early release remedies at federal institutions 
 
More information can be found on FOLA's website. 
March 25 - Legal Aid Notice with respect to changes to summary
legal advice services.
Effective as of end of day on Friday, March 20, 2020, LAO has stopped all 
in-person staff and per diem services in the courthouses across the province 
until further notice. They will be using their normal system of staff and
per diems for all services done remotely. Certificates will still be available in
the normal course. 

Also, LAO recently announced that  it will be temporarily 
re-instating the bail block to the private bar with certificates in order to
respond to demand as a result of COVID-19. Details to follow. Panel lawyers 
should know that they can do bails (on certificates) and be paid per
the former rules. 
 
LAO also announced that, in order to ensure that those in remand are getting 
fair treatment and timely access to justice, LAO will no longer assess merit 
prior to granting bail review authorizations. 
 
Further, LAO is exploring billing and administrative changes to support the 
private bar and their legally aided clients during this crisis period. 
 
You can visit the Legal Aid website for more information.