How do I apply for a legal aid certificate?

4. Contact Legal Aid Ontario

To apply for a :

LAO will ask you how much money your whole household makes to find out if have a low income. They will ask how many family members live in your house and how much money each person makes. They combine all the incomes of your family members to get your gross family income.

To prove your gross family income, you will have to mail or fax proof of your current income to LAO. This could be:

  • income tax returns
  • bank statements
  • information about property you own

It usually takes about a week to find out if you can get a legal aid certificate once you have given LAO proof of your income.

If you're getting social assistance from the Ontario Disability Support Program or Ontario Works, LAO may decide sooner.


If LAO rejects your application for a legal aid certificate, you get a refusal notice with information on how to appeal.

To means that you disagree with the decision and want to ask someone with more authority to review it.

If you want to appeal, you usually need to send certain information to LAO within 15 days after you get LAO's decision. The notice says what information you have to send and where to send your appeal to. You have to send this information by mail.

Your appeal is decided based on the papers you send only.


If LAO refused your application because your income was too high, and your income goes down after you applied, you can try again. Contact LAO and ask them to reconsider your application based on your current income.

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