Should the Law Society of BC Regulate Paralegals? Your Input is Requested

Should the Law Society of BC Regulate Paralegals? Your Input is Requested

are BC paralegals regulatedThe Legal Services Providers Task Force is seeking your opinion regarding whether it’s in public interest for the Law Society of BC to broaden its scope of regulatory authority to include legal service providers other than lawyers such as paralegals. Questions include:

  1. Should legal service providers other than lawyers and notaries be regulated? Why or why not?
  2. If you think legal service providers other than lawyers and notaries should be regulated, which additional legal service providers? Examples of additional legal service providers include paralegals, mediators, arbitrators and native court workers.
  3. Should legal service providers be regulated by a single regulator or should each profession be regulated by a distinct regulator? Why or why not?
  4. If you think legal service providers should be regulated by a single regulator, who should the regulator be?

Paralegals in Ontario are licensed and regulated by the Law Society of Upper Canada as they are considered a formal part of the legal system. Like lawyers, they must obtain professional liability insurance, provide written proof with this requirement to carry insurance before they provide legal services and pay licensing fees on an annual basis. To become a paralegal in Ontario, applicants must attend an accredited program and complete a licensing exam. Finally, paralegals in Ontario must adhere to the Paralegal Rules of Conduct or face disciplinary action from the law society. Ontario is the only province that requires paralegals to be licensed.

An interim report of the task force was distributed to the Benchers in July 2013 which you may be interested in reading prior to submitting your feedback.

To learn more about the Legal Services Providers Task Force and how to provide your opinion, you are invited to attend an information session hosted by CLEBC and BCPA:

Date and Time: September 6, 2013 at 12:30 p.m.

Location: The CLEBC Studio, 500 – 1155 West Pender Street, Vancouver BC. (You may attend this event in person or via webinar).

Presenters: Task Force Committee members: Task Force Committee members: Bruce LeRose, QC, Task Force Committee Chair, Ken Walker, QC, Task Force Committee Vice-Chair, and Carmen Marolla, BCPA Vice-President.

RSVP: Please contact CLEBC Customer Service at 604-893-2121 to reserve your seat, or to obtain the required webinar log-in information.

About Samantha Collier

Samantha Collier is a well-respected social media specialist in the Canadian legal realm. An experienced practitioner of online social networking, Samantha also has experience working in-house in business development for a national IP firm, but has worked in marketing and client acquisition for over 13 years.

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  1. Ravi Khosla
    Posted August 28, 2013 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    Regulated PARALEGALS can represent clients in small claims court and in other lower court proceedings. If they get regulated in BC, they will be able to advise clients on immigration matters and can earn better livelihood. Also they can take legal action on landlord and tenant matters, traffic violations, name changes and other issues etc. I highly support that Law Society of BC should Regulate Paralegals.

  2. Marketing
    Posted August 29, 2013 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Dear Ravi,

    Thank you very much for taking the time to comment on our blog post, we appreciate your feedback and opinion. Are you attending the upcoming information session? It will be interesting to hear more from the task force committee members.

    Have a great afternoon!