Difference Between Legal Clinic and Legal Aid

Many people get confused and don't know who to call when they have a legal problem except to know they want "legal aid". There are two main types of services funded by Legal Aid in most communities. They offer fairly distinct types of help.

Legal Aid offices generally help people who need a lawyer in a criminal or a family law matter. They do this by:

  • Issuing legal aid certificates to use private bar lawyers for help and representation
  • Offering legal information and advice clinics in areas of law that the legal clinic usually does not assist in (family, criminal. real estate, estates)
  • Providing duty counsel in most courts


Eligibility Border for Service

We help low-income people who live in the area bounded by:

  • Steeles Avenue North
  • Falstaff/HW 400/ HW 401 South
  • Keele Street East
  • Humber River West

Cost of Services

There is NO CHARGE for our services. A client may have to pay for expenses incurred such as court costs, and fees to file documents.

Financial Elegibility

We have to follow financial eligibility guidelines. If you want us to serve you, we have to ask for information about your financial and family situation.

If you do not qualify for our services or we cannot serve you for any reason, we will refer you for alternative service. You may wish to contact Legal Aid Ontario for assistance to hire a lawyer at 1-800-668-8258 (or 416-979-1446 in Toronto).

You may also wish to contact the Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) at 1-800–268-8326 or 416-947-3330 (within GTA) if you need a lawyer. A phone call to the LRS will get you the particulars of a lawyer who will give you 30 minutes free legal consultation.

Legal Aid Ontario

  • Jane Finch Community Legal Services
  • 1315 Finch Avenue West, Suite 409,
  • Toronto, ON. M3J 2G6
  • Phone: 416-398-0677 Fax: 416-398-7172