Anyone wishing to apply for legal aid must call the legal aid office assigned to their place of residence and make an appointment. She can also contact the legal aid office where the legal proceedings are taking place.
When opening their application, the applicant must indicate their income, assets and liquid assets. Exceptionally, at the center’s request, the applicant must provide the documents establishing his financial eligibility.
Using the required documents, the legal aid application will be completed and financial eligibility will be reviewed by one of our permanent lawyers. The lawyer will also determine if the service you are requesting is covered by legal aid, in accordance with the Legal Aid Act and its regulations.
Please note that the eligibility assessment is not billed to customers and cannot be done over the phone.
An applicant who has been declared financially eligible for legal aid does not have to state his financial situation if he submits another application for legal aid within 12 months of this declaration of eligibility, unless the latter has changed affect his eligibility.
In order to determine your financial eligibility to legal aid, we assess the following, with respect to you and your family.
A. Your gross annual income
(for the previous and current year)
All sources of income are taken into account, such as:
– employment income;
– business income;
– income from real estate;
– employment insurance benefits;
– CNESST (formerly CSST) income replacement indemnities;
– SAAQ income replacement indemnities;
– wage insurance benefits;
– child and spousal support;
– scholarships and other benefits;
– old-age pension;
– Quebec Pension Plan.
Deductions that may apply to your income:
– expenses to alleviate a serious physical or mental deficiency;
– child care fees actually paid out, to the extent of the amount covered under the provincial tax credit;
– child and spousal support actually paid out;
– school fees deductible under the Taxation Act..
B. The value of your assets
The value of your house and other buildings (standardized value from an up-to-date tax account), and of your investments (RRSP, etc.).
Deductions that may be applied to the value of your assets:
C. Your liquid assets
Also taken into account are amounts held in your bank accounts or in cash, as well as short-terms assets that can be turned into cash, such as shares and savings bonds.
Eligibility scales: Free Eligibility or Eligibility with Contribution
To learn more about eligibility scales, please click on the links below. These PDF files correspond, respectively, to the Free Eligibility Scale, and the Eligibility with Contribution Scale. For more information, you can also visit the Commission des services juridiques website.
As of June 8, 2022, all minor children are financially eligible for free legal aid, regardless of their financial situation. Thus, no financial document is required.
If he must be represented in Superior Court (disputes concerning custody rights & access, determination of support payments) by order of the court or following an intervention in the file in family matters, note that there could be have costs recovered under section 39 of the Legal Aid Regulations.
However, this reimbursement is not payable in any of the following cases:
Persons required to make this reimbursement are themselves financially eligible for free legal aid or legal aid has been granted under the Youth Protection Act or the Criminal Justice System Act for teenagers in order to ensure the representation of a minor or to allow him to be assisted.