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Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) - Family duty counsel

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) - Family duty counsel

Contact Information

Toll-free TTY
TTY (teletypewriter) – Use Bell’s Relay Service: 1 800 855 0511

During the COVID-19 situation, duty counsel services are being provided by phone. Call LAO's summary advice line at 1-800-668-8258 for more information.

Family duty counsel give free legal advice to people who don’t have a lawyer on the day of their hearing and who have a low income. Family duty counsel are paid for by LAO and are at every family law court.

They can't represent you at a trial, but they can:

  • give legal advice and information about the court process
  • help work out an agreement
  • review and help prepare court documents
  • help in the courtroom for certain things like asking for your case to be postponed, and at child protection hearings and hearings related to child and spousal support
  • help in hearings before a trial for issues like custody, access, child protection, or support, when the issues are not complicated
  • make referrals to other sources of help, such as mediation or finding your own lawyer