Legal Aid Manitoba Executive Director
The shortage of lawyers in the North makes it difficult for Legal Aid to adequately fill positions. Currently, there are nine lawyers in legal aid. If a person is ill or on vacation, the effectiveness of intake services is reduced and the assignment of files becomes difficult if there are conflicts (for example, the lawyer has already dealt with the other side of the case) in a file. The geography is also challenging to serve, as there are 13 district courts serving 14 Yukon First Nations and other communities, making face-to-face meetings with clients very difficult. As a result, many intake interviews and document creation are conducted over the phone. For clients who can be present in person, caregivers are available and can meet with their lawyers.85 In 2017, priority was given to family law applications involving violence or fear of violence. Where legal aid is granted to a child in the circumstances referred to in paragraph 2, the Executive Director may register with a land titles office a declaration against immovable property owned by the child`s parent or in which the parent has an interest. 115 See Financial Eligibility, www.princeedwardisland.ca/en/information/justice-and-public-safety/legal-aid (accessed June 17, 2019). An Executive Director and such lawyers, clerks and other staff as may be necessary for the purposes of Legal Aid Manitoba may be employed in accordance with The Public Service Act. In 2017/2018, a total of 51,729 legal aid certificates were issued for all types of cases, of which 6,536 (13%) were issued for family law matters. Similar to British Columbia, there is legal aid for victims and survivors who apply for an emergency protection order in cases of domestic violence, regardless of income.82 The Council may appoint a regional director for each district, who is a lawyer.
Legal Aid Ontario manages the delivery of legal aid services. Legal aid covers all family law matters.95 After many years without raising the income threshold, financial eligibility criteria were increased by six per cent per year from 2014 to 2018 inclusive. However, in April 2019, the Ontario government announced a 30% reduction in the overall legal aid budget that affects all services,96 including family law certificates, mandatory family law counselling, and community clinics serving certain minority communities (e.g., South Asian Legal Services, Muslim Legal Services and Korean Legal Services).97 80 See Brewin and Stephens (2004), Brewin and Govender (2010), Light (2005) and Sarophim (2010) for an overview of the history (e.g., 1980s to 1990s) of reductions in legal aid spending in British Columbia and the impact on women in particular. See also Housefather (2017) Report from Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights at: publications.gc.ca/collections/collection_2017/parl/xc66-1/XC66-1-1-421-16-eng.pdf (accessed October 5, 2019). The criteria for financial eligibility are laid down in the Legal Services Act. According to Nunavut Legal Services` 2016-2017 Annual Report, individuals are eligible based on their annual gross income. However, even those with higher incomes are rarely denied legal aid because Nunavut has great difficulty finding a private lawyer. In Nunavut, per capita legal aid spending is highest in Canada, with the federal and territorial governments providing funding (i.e., 10 times more per capita than Ontario).104c) Advise the Minister on legal aid in general and on the specific legal needs of low-income individuals.
Legal Aid Manitoba may provide legal aid to a group under subsection (1) in any matter that Legal Aid Manitoba considers to be of an objective or interest. A group applying for section 4 legal aid may be deemed eligible by Legal Aid Manitoba, even if some or all class members are not individually eligible. While Legal Aid Manitoba determines that domestic violence remains a coverage priority,98 Legal Aid Ontario is continuing the family violence strategy announced in February 2015.99 However, with recent budget cuts, some community legal clinics may be at risk of terminating services for victims of domestic violence.100 At least once every two years, The Board should review the tariff of fees; paid to lawyers for legal aid. The Legal Aid Commission administers legal aid in the province. Legal aid covers family-related matters, with the exception of divorce, changes to child support, spousal support under the Divorce Act, division of matrimonial property or property rights of unmarried persons111 (New Brunswick Annual Report 2017-2018) (b) cost-effective and efficient administration of legal aid; and “applicant” means a person or group applying for or receiving legal aid, depending on the context; (“beneficiary”) A lawyer who provided legal aid submits an invoice for tax fees to the Executive Director. (a) certify that legal aid has been granted to the parent`s child; and 111 See regulatory guidance at: www.legalaid.nb.ca/en/uploads/file/2017-18%20NBLASC%20Annual%20Report%20Bilingual.pdf and www.legal-info-legale.nb.ca/en/uploads/file/pdfs/Legal_Aid_in_NB_EN.pdf (accessed June 15, 2019). The applicant must provide any additional information or evidence requested by the Executive Director or a Regional Director to determine whether the applicant is or continues to be entitled to legal aid.