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CDLPA Spring 2012 Plenary Session ----------------------- Legal Aid Ontario Presentation Executive Summary Thursday, May 10, 2012 Kingston, Ontario Bob.

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Presentation on theme: "CDLPA Spring 2012 Plenary Session ----------------------- Legal Aid Ontario Presentation Executive Summary Thursday, May 10, 2012 Kingston, Ontario Bob."— Presentation transcript:

1 CDLPA Spring 2012 Plenary Session Legal Aid Ontario Presentation Executive Summary Thursday, May 10, 2012 Kingston, Ontario Bob Ward, President & CEO David McKillop, Vice President, Policy, Research and External Relations

2 This presentation will be available on Legal Aid Ontario’s website: CDLPA Spring Plenary 20122

3 Business Planning Context: Environmental Scan Economic uncertainty Financial pressures facing the province 2012 Provincial Budget and Federal Budget Low interest rates Auditor General’s Report New legislation Ministry of the Attorney General CDLPA Spring Plenary 20123

4 2012 Provincial Budget CDLPA Spring Plenary Public services in Ontario are being evaluated with unprecedented scrutiny. In its 2012 budget, the Government of Ontario committed to: “revisiting and scrutinizing existing assumptions and traditional public service delivery models.”

5 Improving Legal Aid Ontario’s Financial Position CDLPA Spring Plenary 20125

6 Administration costs CDLPA Spring Plenary Administration costs were 18.5% of total expenditures in 2007/08; they are more than 15% in 2011/12.

7 Legal Aid Ontario Certificates, Total Certificates Issued in : 105,547 (includes charges heard separately) Total Certificates Issued in : 100,387 Total Certificates Issued in : 109,310 CDLPA Spring Plenary 20127

8 The Auditor General of Ontario’s Report: Value for Money Audit of Legal Aid Ontario Value for money audit report, released December 2011, was generally positive about Legal Aid Ontario: “We felt its multi-year long-term strategy was heading in the right direction”. CDLPA Spring Plenary 20128

9 Legal Aid Ontario’s Modernization Strategy: Initiatives Are Viewed Through Four Strategic Quadrants Value for Clients (examples: Aboriginal Justice Strategy; Family Law Information Program) Value for Taxpayers (examples: deficit reduction; simplified financial eligibility) Support for Legal Aid Ontario Service Providers (examples: block fees, improved processing of lawyer accounts (98% within 60 days) Support for Legal Aid Ontario’s Institutions (Strengthening Capabilities) (examples: Lawyer Workforce Strategy; risk management) CDLPA Spring Plenary 20129

10 CRIMINAL LAW SERVICES CDLPA Spring Plenary

11 Criminal Law: Block Fees Results The percentage of withdrawals for Block Fee certificates is higher than anticipated for both indictable and summary offences. The cost of a withdrawal is $90 greater than the cost of a guilty plea. Therefore, the fact that there are more withdrawals than anticipated means that the block fee certificate cost is more costly than originally estimated. CDLPA Spring Plenary

12 Criminal Law: Frequency of Block Fee Enhancers The frequency of additional blocks billed is less than expected to date. CDLPA Spring Plenary

13 DUTY COUNSEL SERVICES CDLPA Spring Plenary

14 Duty Counsel Duty counsel services are available in every courthouse in Ontario, including 28 remote and fly-in locations. Total funding for Legal Aid Ontario duty counsel lawyers’ services across Ontario in was $43.7 million. Majority of lawyers providing duty counsel services across Ontario are private bar lawyers on an hourly or per diem basis. There are 1,336 private bar lawyers who provide duty counsel services with an average of 17 years of experience. There are approximately 156 Legal Aid Ontario staff duty counsel lawyers, with an average of 11 years of experience. CDLPA Spring Plenary

15 Duty Counsel Assists CDLPA Spring Plenary Originally projected that duty counsel assists would increase as a result of modernization. However, the model of service being provided has changed. The data does not capture the additional activity of Legal Aid Ontario’s court workers.

16 Summary Legal Advice CDLPA Spring Plenary Summary Legal Advice being provided and final resolution services have increased to reflect a change in focus of duty counsel activity. While total duty counsel activity is down by 13%, Summary Legal Advice is up by 18% and Final Resolution Services have increased by 14%.

17 FAMILY LAW SERVICES CDLPA Spring Plenary

18 Family Law: Certificate Breakdown, Case Type Certificates Issued Total Paid Average Completed Case Cost Number of Completed Cases CFSA7,098$12,890,141$3,0244,262 Family Domestic14,219$28,085,705$2,70310,390 Total21,317$40,975,84614,652 CDLPA Spring Plenary

19 Family Law: Accessing New Services Family Law Information Program Online: Two Versions Legal Aid Ontario's Family Law Information Program (FLIP) available in two versions: –Certificate version allows users to print a certificate that indicates they have fully completed each page of the program. –The non-certificate version allows users to navigate the program freely but does not offer a certificate of completion. Family Law Information Program: Program Usage During the week of March 9-15, 2012, the FLIP page on Legal Aid Ontario’s website was accessed 545 times, with 456 of visitors on the page for the first time. Between January and mid- March, 2,381 visitors used the FLIP program at some point. CDLPA Spring Plenary

20 DISCRETION CDLPA Spring Plenary

21 Discretion “Exceptional Circumstances” –Results obtained –Complexity of the matter –Contributions of the applicant –Amount of time realistically set aside in anticipation of lengthy trial which time was not otherwise filled by the lawyer –Any other relevant factor Legal Aid Services Act, 1998, Schedule 1 & 2 O.REG. 107/99 CDLPA Spring Plenary

22 Discretion Guidelines Consultation CDLPA Spring Plenary Meetings with Associations (CLA, FLA, RLA) April Web solicited input – materials posted on Legal Aid Ontario website April-May DAD connections with local panel members – April-May

23 FINANCIAL ELIGIBILITY CDLPA Spring Plenary

24 Financial Eligibility Review CDLPA Spring Plenary

25 CLINIC STRATEGIC PLANNING CDLPA Spring Plenary

26 Clinic Strategic Planning Process The ACLCO is leading a strategic visioning exercise Ideas for the Future Development of Clinic Law Delivery Services In Ontario – Legal Aid Ontario discussion paper CDLPA Spring Plenary

27 CLIENT SERVICE CENTRE CDLPA Spring Plenary

28 Client Service Centre Legal Aid Ontario’s toll-free client service centre connects more than 1,300 callers a day to a variety of services in over 200 hundred languages. Services include: –legal information –referrals, legal aid applications –criminal and family summary legal advice from a lawyer Average wait times - less than three minutes Approximately 40 percent of all Legal Aid Ontario applications are processed through the client service centre. CDLPA Spring Plenary

29 QUESTIONS? CDLPA Spring Plenary


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