Edmonton drywaller swaps toolbelt for lawyer’s briefcase

Legal Aid Alberta’s first Indigenous Summer Student Program placement a unique milestone in law student’s journey  38-year-old Justin Hjlesvold knows a thing or two about hard work.   Hjlesvold, a self-proclaimed family man from Edmonton and first-year law student at the University of Alberta, is pursuing his dream to become a lawyer after running his own drywalling company for 15 years.    The first student to complete the Indigenous SummerContinue reading Edmonton drywaller swaps toolbelt for lawyer’s briefcase

Op-Ed by President and CEO John Panusa in the Globe and Mail

For Canada to truly recover economically, we need new thinking around access to justice.  John Panusa is the president and CEO of Legal Aid Alberta and the Western Canadian Representative for the Association of Legal Aid Plans of Canada. He has a law degree from the University of Alberta and a Master of Law degreeContinue reading Op-Ed by President and CEO John Panusa in the Globe and Mail

Albertans can remotely prepare for court thanks to new Legal Aid Alberta initiative

LAA duty counsel team steps in this summer to help provide critical services to rural and urban communities during COVID-19   Whether they’re in Edmonton, Calgary, Fort McMurray or Drumheller, Albertans have access to Advance Appearance Duty Counsel from now until Aug. 28, allowing them to prepare for court by phone or e-mail instead of making a trip to the courthouse in person. This new approach, launched by Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) to temporarily help the provincial courts amid COVID-19, has served hundreds of people since it started on July 3 in response to Alberta courts re-opening thisContinue reading Albertans can remotely prepare for court thanks to new Legal Aid Alberta initiative

Fighting the ‘fear of the legal system’ for the Indigenous community

In the photo above: Legal Aid Alberta lawyers Grace Auger (left) and Jessica Buffalo (right). Legal Aid Alberta Indigenous lawyers say now is the time for change in the province  (Calgary, AB and Siksika Nation) One of the biggest obstacles for First Nations people is fear and lack of trust in the legal system, butContinue reading Fighting the ‘fear of the legal system’ for the Indigenous community

Free Resources Available to Help Albertans During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused stress and anxiety for many Albertans. Families in Alberta are facing new challenges with co-parenting and domestic violence, which only become more urgent as our isolation continues. Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) is here to help Albertans navigate these challenging times. Our organization has developed two free resources for Alberta familiesContinue reading Free Resources Available to Help Albertans During COVID-19

LAA staff lawyer honoured with Queen’s Counsel designation

On March 4, 2020, Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) Queen’s Bench Duty Counsel lawyer Christine Le Quéré was appointed as a Queen’s Counsel (Q.C.) for the province of Alberta. An appointment as Q.C. represents a great deal. Le Quéré will be joining a highly respected group of lawyers deserving of recognition and distinction for the exceptionalContinue reading LAA staff lawyer honoured with Queen’s Counsel designation

LAA courthouse intake services to temporarily close

Based on publicly available information, Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) is implementing proactive measures to protect employees and clients and limit their risk of exposure to COVID-19.  To help contain the spread of COVID-19,  all LAA intake services at the Edmonton and Calgary courthouses will be closed effective Monday, March 16, 2020. Until further notice, allContinue reading LAA courthouse intake services to temporarily close

Legal Aid Alberta takes steps to address gaps in detention review hearings

Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) hosted training sessions this month for its roster immigration lawyers on how to effectively prepare for and conduct Detention Review hearings. When a foreign national or permanent resident is detained by Canada Border Security Agency, a Detention Review Hearing will take place within 48 hours to determine if there is aContinue reading Legal Aid Alberta takes steps to address gaps in detention review hearings

Protecting the legal rights of new Canadians

Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) provides support to some of the most vulnerable in society, including new immigrants and those who have left their lives behind to escape persecution. In 2018-2019, 883 certificates were issued for immigration matters, with over 825 distinct clients represented by  LAA in the areas of refugee claims, judicial reviews of refugeeContinue reading Protecting the legal rights of new Canadians

Legal community benefits from LAA’s in-house expertise

Legal Aid Alberta (LAA) is committed to professional development of its staff across the organization and sharing its expertise with the broader legal community. Our organization is in a unique position to effectively improve the overall quality of the justice system in Alberta. Educating our partners in the justice system about access to justice issuesContinue reading Legal community benefits from LAA’s in-house expertise