Pro Bono Québec
Pro Bono Québec initiates, coordinates and promotes free or low-cost professional legal services to the benefit of the population of limited means in Québec.
• PUBLIC INTEREST CASES PROGRAM : Our program aims at providing free legal services to citizens, groups of citizens, or legal persons meeting our admissibility criteria. Service provided in all areas of law. An application costs $20. Visit their website to find the application form.
• For those who are not ELIGIBLE FOR LEGAL AID AND who ARE UNABLE TO PAY FOR THE SERVICES OF A LAWYER. Created in 2010 at the initiative of the Bar of Montreal, the Association des avocats et avocates en droit familial du Québec, the Department of Legal Services of Greater Montreal and of Pro Bono Québec, this service aims to provide timely on-site assistance to self-represented litigants in family matters. The service is offered by referral from the judge or special clerk. Please note that the program requires volunteer lawyers to be available one morning per month. An application costs $20. Visit their website to find the application form
• PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM FOR NON-PROFIT ORGANISATIONS: Pro Bono Quebec creates exclusive agreements by way of which lawyers or partner firms undertake to provide legal support to the clients of non-profit organisations. Eligible organisations must complete an application form in order to be enrolled on our list of organisations seeking a partner firm. An application costs $20. Visit their website to find the application form.
• DUTY COUNSEL SERVICE AT THE COURT OF APPEAL : This service assists unrepresented litigants wishing to appeal a judgment ordering confinement in an institution or authorizing a medical assessment. Available free of charge. The service is available by referral from an Appeal Court judge or clerk.
• PILOT PROJECT INVOLVING VOLUNTEER LAWYERS AT THE COURT OF APPEAL IN FAMILY CASES: Pro Bono Québec and the Québec Court of Appeal, Québec City division, have launched a pilot project with volunteer lawyers in family cases. This service enables persons not served by a lawyer due to financial incapacity to be represented free of charge at a conference session as part of an amicable settlement.
This pilot project enables citizens to apply for free legal services once they demonstrate their ineligibility for legal aid and their financial incapacity. A committee of volunteer lawyers examines the case and, if there are chances of success, Pro Bono Québec seeks a volunteer lawyer.
• TRAINING AND GUIDANCE FOR NEWCOMERS: Information sessions provided at assistance and reception organizations in every region of Québec. With help from many volunteer lawyers, most of them specializing in labour, immigration and family law, we can meet newcomers and address their legal concerns. These talks are tailored to the needs of organizations that help newcomers. In addition, we receive individual requests from refugees that we match with our pro bono resources.
• MEDICAL-LEGAL PARTNERSHIP WITH THE MONTRÉAL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL: Since January 2017, the free legal services of a frontline Pro Bono Québec lawyer are provided at the hospital itself to assist patients and their families who face not only illness but also an array of legal problems. This program focuses on low-income families.
• LEGAL CLINIC IN KUUJJUAQ: A service aimed at facilitating access to justice for Indigenous communities. Based on the conclusions of the report La justice dans le Nord issued by the Barreau du Québec in 2015 and on comments from bâtonnière Claudia P. Prémont following a visit to Kuujjuaq in September 2016, Pro Bono Québec has sought to facilitate access to justice in this region by establishing a transitory legal clinic. Four lawyers and a notary travelled there in March 2017 to provide legal services in the areas of criminal and family law, as well as youth protection and inheritance law. The experience was highly appreciated, to the point that new legal clinics will be held in the coming months.
• BOUSSOLE JURIDIQUE : This website is a directory of nearly 400 free or inexpensive legal resources available to the general population of Quebec. This user-friendly tool aims at allowing the public to quickly find a legal resource that will be able to provide them with the information, support, and guidance they require. www.boussolejuridique.ca