These FAQs are provided by the Canadian Legal FAQs, a website of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta. They provide answers to questions about legal services in Alberta. You will find FAQs on Commissioners for Oaths and Notaries Public, Retainers, and sources of legal asisstance available in Alberta.
The following organizations provide free or low-cost legal assistance as described.
CPLEA Suggested Resources
Not sure where to begin finding answers to your questions. Get started with our suggested resources. See additional resources below for more information.
Legal Aid Alberta provides quality, effective legal advice and representation that enables eligible Albertans to resolve their legal issues; Eligibility guidelines are on its web site. It is an independent, publicly funded, not-for-profit organization that provides a broad range of services in family law (including emergency protection orders) and child welfare, adult criminal law, youth criminal law, immigration and refugee services and some civil legal areas (adult guardianship / trusteeship and income supports and government benefits).
This tipsheet is a publication of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta. It looks at the key differences between providing legal information vs. legal advice.
This directory provides a listing of services available in your specific region. You can search by location and category for social and legal services available in Alberta.
The Alberta Legal Information Centre is an initiative of the Association des juristes d'expression français de l'Alberta (AJEFA). It provides free and confidential legal information, support and referral services to all Albertans. Their services are offered in person, or remotely (mail, email, fax and telephone).
Youthlaw.ca is a website of the Children's Legal and Educational Resource Centre (CLERC). CLERC offers legal advice, information, referrals and services to children and youth.The Legal Topics section of their website offers answers to some common questions asked by youth regarding their legal rights. Lawyers at CLERC provide representation to young people 19 years of age and under who have nowhere else to turn for legal support.
The Calgary Chinese Community Service Association is an ethnocultural community service agency. CCSA offers four core programs: Children and Youth, Integration and Civic Engagement (ICE), Health Program, and Legal Program. Their Law and Advocacy Program is funded by the Alberta Law Foundation and provides a range of services including: basic legal information and referrals, Commissioner for Oaths and Notary, a free legal outreach clinic and will and estate documents drafting services.
Calgary Legal Guidance provides free legal advice for individuals with low income. If you need legal information and advice on: Family issues; Criminal issues; Civil issues; Restraining Orders; Emergency Protection Orders etc; Social Benefit issues; and; an evening course on Do Your Own Divorce.
Calgary Legal Guidance offers legal advice and assistance to newcomers who are looking for help in various immigration law matters. The Immigration Law Project can assist clients with: Making a claim for refugee protection, Preparing and filing applications for permanent residence, Applying for work permits,temporary resident visas and study permits, Family sponsorship issues, and Representation in specially considered cases. CLG offers three free legal advice outreach clinics at the following locations: Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association (CIWA) (403.263.4414) - Offering advice in Family and Immigration Law; Centre for Newcomers (403.569.3325) Offering advice in Family and Immigration Law; and Immigrant Service Calgary (403.265.1120) Offering advice in Immigration Law for permanent residents and Canadian citizens. Call each location directly to book an appointment
The Central Alberta Community Legal Clinic (CACLC) provides legal advice and information to people who cannot afford a lawyer and do not qualify for legal aid. Volunteer Lawyers provide information and summary legal advice in the Clinic Program about a variety of legal matters including family and civil law, by appointment only.
CLERC offers legal advice, information, referrals and services to children and youth.The Legal Topics section of their website offers answers to some common questions asked by youth regarding their legal rights. Lawyers at CLERC provide representation to young people 19 years of age and under who have nowhere else to turn for legal support.
The goal of the Court Assistance Program (Queen's Bench Amicus Program) is to improve access to justice for self-represented litigants appearing in Queen' Bench Justice and Masters Chambers. This program brings volunteer lawyers into Chambers, where they act as 'amicus curiae' and help the court understand the issues related and the positions taken by unrepresented litigants. The program offers opportunity for courtroom advocacy in a positive environment, which can give great skills-building experience for lawyers and students, and the program is beneficial for overall professional development, mentoring, networking, building collegiality, and enhancing the public image of the legal profession. This service is available in Calgary and Edmonton. Check with the courthouse for dates and times.
The Family Centre, based in Lethbridge, is a non-profit organization providing a comprehensive range of services to children, youth and families in Southwestern Alberta.Through funding from the Alberta Law Foundation the Centre provides legal information, support and referral services.
The Edmonton Community Legal Centre is a non profit organization that offers free legal information, advice and representation for people living with low income in the Edmonton area. The Centre helps individuals and families who have legal problems in the following areas: Landlord and Tenant; Employment/ Wrongful Dismissal; Small Claims; Income Support Advocacy; Human Rights; Debt; Immigration. The Centre is also part of the PBLA Civil Claims Duty Counsel project out of the Provincial Court. Members of the public can receive 30 minutes of summary legal advice on a first come first serve basis. NOTE: The Centre is not able to provide assistance in the areas of criminal law.
The Edmonton Community Legal Centre (ECLC) is a non profit organization that offers free legal information, advice and representation for people living with low income in the Edmonton area. The Centre helps individuals and families who have legal problems in the following areas: Landlord and Tenant; Family Law (children and guardianship, custody, child and spousal support, marriage, relationships, and property and maintenance) Small Claims; Income Support Advocacy; Human Rights; and Immigration. The Centre offers a filing fee waivers program , which reduces the fee for certain documents filed to individuals who meet eligibility requirements. The program covers documents filed with the: Residential Tenancy Dispute Resolution Service (RTDRS), Provincial Court, Court of Queen's Bench, and the Alberta Court of Appeal. For more information contact ECLC at : 780-702-1725.
The Edmonton Community Legal Centre is a non profit organization that offers free legal information, advice and representation for people living with low income in the Edmonton area. The Centre helps individuals and families who have legal problems in the following areas: Landlord and Tenant; Employment/ Wrongful Dismissal; Small Claims; Income Support Advocacy; Human Rights; Debt; Immigration. The Centre offers an Income Supports Program which will help qualified applicants with appeals for these income benefit programs: Support for Independence (SFI), Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), Employment Insurance (EI), Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and CPP Disability, and Old Age Security (OAS). For more information, call 780-702-1725.
The mission of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Edmonton is to foster the dignity and worth of women who come into conflict with the law, and help them live as valued members of their communities. They are a not-for-profit organization that has existed in Edmonton since 1977. The society offers a variety of programs for women and girls including a legal clinic. The Legal Clinic Program assists federally sentenced women at Edmonton Institute for Women by addressing their legal needs.
Family Court Counsellors provide services, at no cost, to families who are involved in parenting disputes and are living separate and apart. The service is designed for people who are not represented by a lawyer. Services may include: Information on options and services for resolving family issues; Referrals to services and programs including mediation; Information on the effects of separation and divorce on children; Help to negotiate agreements; Assistance with court applications, arranging court dates and presenting the case in Provincial Court.
The Family Law Office (FLO) assists clients who have a family law legal problem and who have qualified for services through Legal Aid Alberta. They assist with problems relating to: Separation and divorce; Custody, access, parenting orders, contact orders; Child maintenance and spousal support; Guardianship; Child protection/child welfare; Matrimonial property disputes; Representation of children; Grandparent contact orders; Emergency Protection orders. There are offices in Edmonton, Calgary, Lethbridge, Red Deer and Wetaskiwin.