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Legal aid eligibility threshold increases another six per cent

Monday, March 27, 2017

This spring, 144,000 more Ontarians will be able to qualify for legal aid services, thanks to a six per cent increase to the financial eligibility threshold that comes into effect on April 1.

Ontario's 2014 budget committed to increasing the eligibility threshold for legal aid by six per cent over multiple years. This raise has given Legal Aid Ontario the support to expand access to its services in areas such as family, immigration, refugee, mental health, criminal and poverty law. As of this April, the province will have provided Legal Aid Ontario $153 million in additional funding and made it possible for more than 500,000 people in Ontario to qualify for legal aid services for the first time.

This investment into the legal aid system is part of the provincial government's larger plan to ensure a fair and accessible justice system for all.

Quotes

"We commend the Ministry of the Attorney General's commitment to access to justice. We are grateful for their support—particularly over the last several years with the expansion of the financial eligibility thresholds, which has resulted in more than 500,000 more Ontarians being eligible for legal aid than was the case prior to 2014. On behalf of Legal Aid Ontario, I thank the provincial government for working with us to meet the justice needs of low-income Ontarians."

John McCamus, Chair of Legal Aid Ontario

"Our government is focused on increasing legal aid services for low-income and vulnerable people. We know how important it is sometimes to find legal representation, which can be a struggle with a low income. That's why our government has worked with Legal Aid Ontario to make historic investments to allow 500,000 more people to get the legal help that they need."

Yasir Naqvi, Attorney General

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