About paralegals & FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

 

 

What is a paralegal?

In Ontario, Kumar and other paralegals are licensed by the Law Society of Ontario, which also regulates lawyers, and are part of the Provincial legal system. He may represent you in small claims court, traffic court and before Provincial tribunals and boards such as workplace safety, the Human Rights Commission, the Financial Services Commission, the Landlord and Tenant Board and the Labour Relations Board, among others.

 

Kumar may also represent you if Provincial offences are charged for minor criminal violations such as trespassing, indecent acts, public nudity, animal cruelty, theft under $5,000, fraud, forgery, making false statements, and in Summary Criminal Cases where the maximum penalty is a fine of $5,000 or up to 6 months in jail, or both.

 

Why should I hire Kumar rather than fight my case myself?

While all citizens of Toronto have the right to represent themselves in court, Kumar knows things such as how to complete the complex forms for small claims court and tribunals. They require that forms be completed precisely, the rules of evidence be followed exactly, and that proper procedure is respected when submitting testimony or objecting to something the other side is alleging.

Kumar also helps you review your testimony before a trial date or hearing so that, for example, you only answer the question being asked rather than responding to what you think the judge, Crown attorney, or the other side meant to ask. It takes experience to know how to do this.

 

Before I hire a paralegal, what should I look for?

Be certain that, like Kumar, they are licensed by the Law Society of Ontario (LSO), the same organization that licenses and regulates lawyers.

 

To verify their status, follow the link below to go to the LSO website and then type in their first and last name. If their name appears, they are licensed to practice in Ontario. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then ask them about their experience in the area where you need help. Kumar has extensive expertise in helping clients deal effectively with small claims court;  the Residential Tenancies Act 2006 and Landlord and Tenant Boards by helping landlords get their eviction orders; traffic court;  provincial tribunals;  and minor criminal matters.

 

Does a paralegal have to study and pass an exam?

Yes. Kumar graduated with honors in Paralegal Studies from Herzing College in Toronto after successfully completing a two-year course and holds an advanced certificate in dispute resolution from York University.

 

Do paralegals have a code of conduct?

Yes. All ethical paralegals adhere to a professional code of conduct. Like all of the best paralegals, Kumar also belongs to the Ontario Paralegal Association (OPA). The PSO has merged with the LPA as of October 2014.

 

Who licenses and regulates paralegals?

The Law Society of Ontario licenses and regulates paralegals in Ontario. This is the same body that licenses and regulates all lawyers in the province.

 

Do paralegals carry liability insurance?

Yes. Licensed paralegals carry $1-million in liability insurance coverage for errors and omissions.

 

In what areas can paralegals practice?

There are many areas where Kumar can help you.

  • Small Claims Court, including claims for damages or return of property worth $25,000 or less

  • Landlord and Tenant Boards for issues arising under the Residential Tenancies Act 2006 

  • Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule (SABS) claim or a matter related to a SABS claim, including a mediator, a person performing an evaluation, an arbitrator or the Director acting under relevant sections of the Insurance Act.

 

Ontario Court of Justice under the Provincial Offences Act, for matters involving:

Highway Traffic Act

Compulsory Automobile Insurance Act

Liquor Licence Act

Trespass to Property Act

Environmental Protection Act

Occupational Health and Safety Act

Blind Persons Rights Act

Municipal By-Laws

 

Summary Convictions Cases under the Criminal Code of Canada for summary convictions and where the maximum penalty is a $5,000 fine or imprisonment to a maximum of 6 months, or both, for offences such as:
 

Indecent acts, public nudity, prostitution

Causing disturbance, vagrancy, cruelty to animals, assault, possession of a weapon, mischief regarding property

Theft under $5,000, or possession of stolen property under $5,000

Fraud, forgery, making false statements

 

Tribunals including:

Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO)

Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB)

Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal

Landlord and Tenant Board

Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC)

Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario

Social Benefits Tribunal

Assessment Review Board

Ontario Municipal Board (OMB)

Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB)

Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario

Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Appeal Tribunal

Health Professions Appeal and Review Board

Ontario Highway Transport Board

Ontario Parole and Earned Release Board

 

Are there limits on what paralegals can do for me?

Yes, there are limits, but the areas in which Kumar can help you are broad. He is allowed to deal with small claims court, traffic court, and before Provincial tribunals and boards such as workplace safety, the Human Rights Commission, the Financial Services Commission, and the Labour Relations Board, among others.

 

Paralegals may also act for clients if Provincial offences are charged for minor criminal violations such as trespassing, indecent acts, public nudity, animal cruelty, theft under $5,000, fraud, forgery or making false statements as well as in Summary Criminal Cases where the maximum penalty is a fine of $5,000 or up to 6 months in jail, or both.

 

Do courts respect paralegals the way they do lawyers?

Judges in Ontario recognize the important role paralegals such as Kumar the Paralegal play in providing the citizens of Toronto with access to justice on a range of matters that come before the court or tribunals and boards. Because paralegals have two years of specialized training before they may take an exam to become licensed, judges know they understand the legal system, the court, and the rules of the court.

 

My spouse and I are divorcing and we’ve agreed on dividing our property and supporting our children, so may Kumar draft and file the paperwork?

No, Kumar may not practice in the area of family law.

 

If your questions are not answered here, phone Kumar at 647-342-4731 (office) or 647-409-5442 (mobile) and he will give you the information you need.

 

There is no charge to answer your questions.

 

Sculpture of jurists, University Avenue, Toronto.
Kumar the Paralegal can help you save time and money in small claims court or help you fight a traffic ticket.
 
This saves you time and money—and your nerves, too. 
Osgoode Hall on Toronto's Queen Street houses the offices of the Law Society of Upper Canada.