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LAO invests additional $7 million in new family law initiatives in 2013/14

Thursday, October 17, 2013


LAO will invest additional provincial funding of $7 million in 2013/14 to support family law initiatives.

LAOs budget commitment

additional funding of $30 million over three years [$10 million annually, beginning in 2013/14] will be provided to Legal Aid Ontario. This funding will improve access to justice and enhance outcomes for low-income families, victims of domestic violence and other vulnerable groups by strengthening the capacity of Family Law Service Centres and other community and legal clinics across Ontario to respond to evolving needs, and ensure services are sustainable.
— Government of Ontario Budget, May 3, 2013

This $7 million is 70 per cent of the $10 million in additional funding LAO is receiving from the government for 2013/14, as announced in the May 2013 budget. It also meets LAOs own commitment to support innovative, client-focused and cost-effective initiatives.

This additional funding will help LAO:

  • increase the number of family law clients served
  • increase support and assistance for unrepresented people in family court
  • increase the number of cases resolved through mediation
  • increase the number of clients served through clinics, SLASS, and community agencies
  • ensure services to low-income families are sustainable

LAO will invest the remaining 30 per cent ($3 million for 2013/14) in a new LAO Innovation Fund for legal clinics, student legal aid services societies (SLASSs) and other community agencies who need funding to support projects that focus on delivering integrated services through existing community access points. The new fund will also support clinic law service modernization.

LAOs $10 million in additional funding for family law and clinics announced today is the first of three annual installments beginning in 2013/14. LAO has not yet determined how it will allocate the remaining $10 million annually in funding for the 2014/15 and 2015/16 fiscal years.


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Questions


For questions or further information, please contact:

Kristian Justesen
Director, Communications and Stakeholder Relations Group
Phone: 416-979-2352, ext.4782
Email: justesk@lao.on.ca and/or media@lao.on.ca