Publications & Resources

Refugee law services reform

Publications & Reources

Stakeholder feedback


Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is sharing the feedback it received on the delivery of its refugee law services during its consultations in October and November 2012 and in January 2013.


Clinics

Recommendations

LAO action plan

Interested in contract for services or funding for additional staff resources

LAO will support the co-ordination of effective, efficient and quality services among clinics, the private bar, paralegals, and community agencies.



Community agencies

Recommendations

LAO action plan

Plain language public legal information

LAO will develop public legal information

Summary legal advice

LAO will develop summary legal advice services



Private bar

Recommendations

LAO action plan

Expand certificate coverage

LAO will develop the most cost-effective service delivery model, including retaining the most cost-effective service providers to make the best use of limited resources. LAO has done this in other programs - refugee services cannot be the exception.

LAO will match services to client need and prioritize the use of resources based on merit assessment and budget. LAOs current funding of $7M by the Federal Government for refugee services may end March 2014.

Use only supervised paralegals

LAO will use licensed qualified paralegals regulated by the Law Society of Upper Canada and authorized to provide refugee services without supervision

Simplify billing

LAO will explore alternative, simpler billing and payment methods, including block fees

Challenge legislation

LAO will support Test Case litigation

Lobby for increased funding

LAO will undertake to research and evaluate the impact of the new legislation on access to justice and report to MAG

Co-ordindate services with clinics/RLO

LAO will support the co-ordination of effective, efficient and quality services among clinics, the private bar, paralegals, and community agencies

Continue discussion

LAO will commit to ongoing evaluation and adjustments of its new service delivery model.

LAO will continue to talk to stakeholders about new legislation and reform initiatives.


Related

Refugee Law Assosication (RLA)

Recommendations

LAO action plan

Fund Refugee Appeal Division (RAD)

Fund RAD on a pilot basis

Not use unsupervised paralegals - service quality will be compromised

Ensure licensed paralegals are subject to rigorous panel and quality standards

Create specialized panels and enhance panel standards

Create specialized panels and enhance panel standards

Simplify billing and payment - block fees and service contracts but only within certain parameters

Discuss ways to simplify billing and payments

Pursue an increase to Federal funding

Create a business case for Federal funding

Determine legal services coverage through merit assessment, not DCO criteria or country list

Determine client services funding through merit assessment

Reconsider streaming clients to clinics based on language or ethnicity streaming will impact client choice and experienced counsel

Continue discussions regarding efficiencies and effectiveness through streaming by volume and ethnicity/language

Create cost-efficiencies through centralized research

Discuss the idea of centralized research