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Legal Services Society. Navigating the Sea of Change Refugee Lawyers Group February 8, 2013. Applying for Legal Aid. Specialized intake workers New legal aid immigration intake phone line Port of entry Apply as soon as possible 15 days to complete a BOC

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Legal services society

Legal Services Society

Navigating the Sea of Change

Refugee Lawyers Group

February 8, 2013

Applying for legal aid

Applying for Legal Aid

  • Specialized intake workers

  • New legal aid immigration intake phone line

  • Port of entry

    • Apply as soon as possible

    • 15 days to complete a BOC

    • Counsel must be available on hearing date (45 days or 60 days)

  • Inland applications

    • Claimants should apply before attending at CIC (before submitting CIC forms and BOC)

Refugee claims volumes and approval rates

Refugee claims volumes and approval rates

  • Since 09/10 the number of refugee claims cases has decreased substantially – high of 1,200 applications for legal aid to less than an anticipated 500 this fiscal year

  • Approval rate for BOC applications is about 80%

  • Refusals of coverage are automatically reviewed internally by case management staff

  • In addition person can request a review of a refusal of a legal aid application (in writing) at any time

Billing for refugee referrals

Billing for refugee referrals

  • LSS Guide to Legal Aid Tariffs


  • Immigration Tariff

    • Select the version of the chapter that applies to the date of assignment on your referral.

      • On or after December 15, 2012(BOC claims)

      • Before December 15, 2012 (PIF claims)

        Appeals Tariff


  • Immigration tariff

    Immigration tariff

    • Refugee Claims (BOC)

    • Up to 16 hours general preparation

    • Up to 10 hours interpreter time

    • Actual attendance at hearing

    • Up to $371 for translations

    • Completion of CIC forms

      • Tariff was not designed with competition of CIC forms included

      • Options:

        • Administrative staff (under supervision)

        • Interpreters (under supervision)

        • NGO form completion clinics (draft of CIC forms – reviewed by counsel)

    Persons in detention summary advice

    Persons in detention: summary advice

    • If a person contacts LSS by phone from detention LSS will provide very basic telephone legal advice

    • Those detained inland are required to complete a BOC right away

    • BOCs are completed with the assistance of an interpreter - person usually does not have counsel

    • Person may not have actually applied for legal aid

    Persons in detention legal aid referrals

    Persons in detention: legal aid referrals

    • Once a referral is made for a refugee claim counsel may need to amend the BOC if completed at CBSA

    • Our CBSA contact is Kent Zarrelli -counsel can reach him at 604.666.0042 to find out where claimants are detained.

    •  if counsel gets a call from person in detention call LSS to see if case has already been assigned – avoid change of counsel

    Lss duty counsel program detention

    LSS duty counsel program-detention

    • Attend at Library Square at 9 am –LSS e mails list of hearings the afternoon before

    • To locate interpreters call the interpreter’s room (604) 666-5910

    • Provide legal advice to detainees

    • Represent persons at detention hearings

    • 30 day reviews- if there has been a change in circumstances that might lead to release

    • If the Minister is consenting to a release, do not attend the detention review hearing, unless there are exceptional circumstances that require counsel’s attendance.

    • Contact if:

      • a matter is put over to another date, and you have information that would be helpful to the duty counsel acting on that date- LSS will forward e mail to scheduled duty counsel

      • duty counsel wants a referral to represent a person at their next detention review

      • Duty counsel believes a second counsel is required for a particular day

    Duty counsel taking legal aid applications

    Duty Counsel: Taking legal aid applications

    Please assist LSS by completing a legal aid application form and faxing it in to intake or by calling LSS immigration intake line.

    Immigration legal aid application form available at CBSA or on line- Duty Counsel Tariff- Appendix 5

    Legal services society

    Best Practices For Representing Clients At Detention Review HearingsTo request a copy contact

    Rad applications

    RAD applications

    • RPD counsel-provide an opinion regarding the merit of a RAD appeal if requested by LSS or if in counsel’s view the case is likely to succeed and the final result would benefit client

    • Send a copy of the decision to LSS appeals

    • LSS preference is for counsel at RPD to act as counsel on the RAD

    • Responding to Ministers appeals most likely will be covered

    • Can apply for legal aid after receiving oral decision however LSS might need to wait to review a copy of the written reasons

    • RAD approvals through LSS appeals department

    • Bill in accordance with LSS appeals tariff

    Judicial reviews and other post claim relief

    Judicial reviews and other post claim relief

    • Applications have increased

    • Apply to LSS appeals department

    • Bill in accordance with Appeals Tariff

    • Check authorizations on referral

    E billing and authorizations

    E- billing and authorizations

    • E authorizations introduced in January 2013

    • Use this to request authorization for disbursements (other than transcripts)

    • Response from LSS is by email

    • New phone number for questions about tariff services (now called lawyer services)

    • 1-888-401 6206

    • For more information see January Legal Aid Brief on the LSS website

    Update on sun sea cases

    Update on Sun Sea Cases

    • LSS continues to fund some refugee claims at the RPD

    • Judicial Reviews of refugee claims ( positive and negative decisions)

    • Interpretation of section 37 (1) b) IRPA – “people smuggling” before the FCA

    • Interpretation of section 117 (1) “organizing entry into Canada”

    Anticipated legal challenges

    Anticipated legal challenges

    • PRRA and H&C one year ( or 36 month) bar

    • Procedural fairness re: extensions to file BOCs, request for hearing postponements, abandonment proceedings, time lines

    • Reopening grounds limited

    • Designated countries of origin regime

    • Designated Foreign Nationals – detention

    • RAD- limited access, standard of review, RAD- asymmetrical regime (minister as appellant compared to claimant as appellant)

    Information sharing

    Information Sharing

    • Circulate information by e mail

    • LSS hidden website for Sun Sea arrivals is no longer being maintained

    • Ontario Refugee Lawyers Association

    • Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL)

    Public legal education materials

    Public legal education materials

    • Completed:

    • Flow chart

    • Book mark

    • Possible:

    • translations of BOC

    • Refugee claim guide

    • Self representation kits

    Lss contact information intake applications

    LSS contact information-intake (applications)

    • By phone

      • Legal aid immigration line (specialized intake workers)

      • 604-601-6076

      • 1-888-601-6076

  • In person

    • Vancouver legal aid office

    • Suite 425 510 Burrard Street

    • Vancouver




  • 8:30 to 4:30

    • except Wednesday 8:30 to 12:30

  • Lss contact information appeals

    LSS contact information-appeals

    • Phone

      • 604-601-6085

    • Email


    • Fax

      • 604-682-0956

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