Can I change my lawyer?
In rare cases, you can change your lawyer. However, it is difficult to do so, especially if work on your case has started.
Once a lawyer has accepted the legal aid certificate issued to you, you must obtain permission from LAO to change lawyers. Before granting this permission, LAO staff consider the reason for your request and other factors, including:
- Whether there has been a complete breakdown in the lawyer/client relationship.
- A lawyer’s inability to continue to represent you for ethical reasons or because their circumstances have changed.
- Your individual circumstances or vulnerabilities.
- The complexity of your legal case.
- How much work has been completed by your lawyer and billed to LAO.
- How many prior change of lawyer applications you have submitted.
To apply for a change of lawyer, call us toll free at 1‑800‑668‑8258. A representative will gather necessary information from you and complete the application on your behalf.
District office staff from your home region will review your request and decide whether you can change your lawyer. Decisions may take up to six weeks.
You will be notified of the decision via your preferred method of communication with LAO. If you have signed up for our Client Portal and chosen to receive correspondences electronically, an email will be sent to your account. Otherwise, you will be informed of the decision by standard mail.