I can’t afford a family law lawyer. Where can I find legal help?
Question & AnswerI can’t afford a family law lawyer. Where can I find legal help?
1. Get free legal information
It can be useful to get legal information and help before you make decisions or even before you talk to a lawyer.
Legal Aid Ontario
Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) has some services for people of all income levels. These include:
Telephone information and referrals
LAO gives people of all income levels general information and referrals over the telephone. You can also get up to 20 minutes of free general legal advice by calling 1-800-668-8258 from Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Family Law Information Centres
There are Family Law Information Centres (FLICs) in every Ontario courthouse that deals with family law. All of the centres have free pamphlets on topics such as separation and , court procedures, and family . Many FLICs also have staff who can give general information and make referrals.
Information and Referral Coordinators (IRCs) can:
- help you understand your needs and the court process
- refer you to other services like counseling, help for abused women and men, addiction support, child and family support, and interpreters
- tell you about ways to resolve your issues without going to court, such as mediation
At some courts, IRCs may only be available at certain times. Contact your local FLIC to find out more.
There are other places where you can get free information. These include:
The Ontario Legal Information Centre phone line
The Association of French-Speaking Jurists of Ontario (AJEFO) has a resource called the Ontario Legal Information Centre that gives you 30 minutes with a lawyer over the telephone or in person. Call 1-844-343-7462 to speak with a lawyer about any area of law in English or French. You may have to leave a message, and a lawyer will call you back within 14 days.