Refugee and immigration legal issues
We may pay for a lawyer to represent you if you are a refugee claimant or an immigrant who qualifies for legal aid services. If you are eligible for legal aid but do not have a lawyer, you can choose to have either a private bar or LAO staff lawyer represent you.
If you are a refugee claimant and would like further information on how LAO may be able to help you, visit our Services for refugee claimants section.
For more information on how LAO may help with your immigration matter, visit our Immigration services section.
An LAO representative will help you in the language of your choice (through an interpreter if necessary).
If we cannot help you because we do not provide assistance for your matter, you may be able to get help at your local legal clinic or a student legal service organizations.
What LAO does NOT do
LAO does not help people:
- obtain permanent resident status (except on humanitarian and compassionate grounds) or checking the status of applications with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
- prepare sponsorship applications
- renew temporary resident permits or student visas
- resolve problems in getting Ontario Health Insurance Plan coverage
The government charges application fees for some immigration matters
Even if you have a legal aid certificate, you still have to pay Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s application and filing fees for your immigration matters.