The Difference Between A Lawyer And A Paralegal In Ontario

If you need legal help in Ontario, you may be wondering if you should hire a lawyer or a paralegal. Perhaps you’re considering representing yourself, or maybe you heard of a paralegal and are wondering what they can do for you. Let’s consider the difference between a lawyer and a paralegal. Despite common misconception, they’re not the same thing.

Lawyers, Paralegals, and Law Clerks

Being a Lawyer is one of the old professions known to man. A lawyer can help you with any legal issue you have, so long as your issue is in line with the individual lawyer’s specialty. For example, some lawyers specialize in criminal law while some specialize in family law. Still, other lawyers may specialize in civil practice.

On the other hand, being a paralegal is a newer profession, and despite another common misconception, paralegals are not law clerks. A paralegal and a law clerk are two different things. A law clerk is very important, but they must have a lawyer with them. Law clerks are not allowed to give legal advice like a lawyer or a paralegal can.

The LSO regulates lawyers and Paralegals

Both lawyers and paralegals are regulated by the same institution – the Law Society of Ontario. The LSO establishes rules for paralegals and lawyers and also punishes them if the rules are broken. In a way, the LSO is your safeguard against a breach in a lawyer’s or a paralegal’s fiduciary duty.

What a Paralegal Can Do for You

Although a paralegal can’t do everything a lawyer can do, they can still do a lot for you. As you know, lawyers can be quite costly, but paralegals tend to be quite a bit cheaper.

That said, what can a paralegal do for you? Paralegals can assist in the following:

  • Landlord and tenant matters

  • Small claims cases

  • If you are being sued or are suing somebody else for $25,000 or less

  • If you have a minor criminal legal matter

  • Any traffic violations, including speeding, stunt driving, texting, and driving, etc.

  • If you need legal representation in a tribunal, such as WSIB, LTB, Human Rights, Labour Board, etc.

Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers!

Whatever it is that you need legal help with; if you’re not sure whether you need a lawyer or a paralegal, feel free to contact Civil Litigations for guidance. Contacting a paralegal is a great starting point because we’ll refer you to a lawyer if we can’t help you. Conversely, a lawyer is never going to refer you to a paralegal. They want your money.

Contact Civil Litigations to Speak with a Paralegal in Ontario

Civil Litigations was established in 1996, and we represent Toronto and the greater Toronto area. We built our practice based on the strong principles of providing quality legal services to our clients at affordable prices. Sadly, the legal services are often comparable to auto mechanical services in the sense that very few people understand how the justice system works, and so the mechanics (the lawyers), get away with overcharging their customers.
If you need a paralegal in Ontario, start by contacting Civil Litigations. You might be pleasantly surprised but we can do and how affordable our prices are. You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MariaDB server version for the right syntax to use near ‘AND ba.deleted != 1 AND bb.deleted != 1’ at line 1