1What is my role, as the client?
As the client, you will decide the general direction of your matter. As your paralegal, our job is to provide you with legal advice on the different options available to move your matter forward, including the pros, cons and costs associated with each. We will usually make a recommendation, but the final decision will be yours. We will then provide legal services necessary to carry out your instructions. We cannot accept instructions that are in conflict with our duties to the courts, other paralegal's or lawyer's and the public. The Paralegal Rules of Conduct sets out the standards we as paralegals are to meet.
2How will my paralegal communicate with me?
Two-way communication is very important in a paralegal-client relationship. Many paralegals communicate by email or phone. Regular contact with you is critical in order to provide updates on your matter and obtain your further instructions. It is our goal to respond to client emails or phone calls within 1-2 business days, where applicable. We ask that our clients also respond to our emails or phone calls in a timely fashion. If we do not receive instructions from you on a matter, we are unable to continue to provide legal services on your behalf.
3What does it mean to ‘retain a paralegal’?
To retain a paralegal means to hire a paralegal to assist you with your legal matter. There are two parts to hiring a paralegal : a retainer letter and the payment of a retainer. Once we have been retained by you, we will provide you with a retainer letter which sets out the matter on which you have sought our services and details of the paralegal-client relationship. This includes how you will be charged for legal services, forms communication with you and assurance of confidentiality. Many paralegals will also require the payment of a retainer before providing legal services. A retainer is essentially a down-payment on legal services, which is held in trust by our firm for you. As we perform legal services on your behalf and provide a statement of account for those services, we will draw down the retainer. Once it has been depleted, we may ask for an additional retainer if more work is required to be performed on your behalf. If your matter is resolved and there are still retainer funds being held in trust for you, the remaining funds will be returned to you.
4How will I be charged for legal services?
Our statements of accounts are broken into three categories: legal fees, disbursements and other charges. Legal fees are our charges for services and are subject to GST. Typically, legal fees are charged on an hourly rate or time basis. In determining the chargeable time for a matter, we include telephone calls, emails, meetings, preparation time, sending, receiving and reviewing correspondence, drafting documents, travel time, reviewing documents and files, research, court appearances and all time spent in providing legal services to you on the matter. We will provide you with regular statements of account which will detail the services provided to you. Some legal services are provided at a flat-rate charge. Other services may be provided on a contingency basis, whereby our legal fee is a percentage of the amount, if any, recovered in the matter. Disbursements are payments we make to third parties for expenses incurred on your behalf. We incur these expenses as your agent. Some examples include courier charges, Land Titles Office fees, Corporate Registry fees and court filing fees. You will be responsible for paying our disbursements on your matter as well as GST, where applicable. Other charges include charges for non-legal services, such as photocopying, printing and special stationary costs.
5What is a trust account?
We maintain a separate bank account for money we hold in trust for our clients, designated as a trust account.

1What Legal Services To You Provide?
Our Firm recognizes that it can provide value to its clients by concentrating in the practice areas of small claims and landlord tenant matters.
2Do you provide freelance or co/paralegal services?
Yes our firm is retained by other firm's as freelance or co/paralegal. If you need to hire a legal professional with specific experience or capabilities, using co/paralegal allows you to avoid the time and monetary commitment of recruiting, hiring and training a full-time employee.
3What are the Basic Steps in the Civil Litigation/Small Claims Process?
Civil lawsuits arise out of disputes between people, businesses, or other entities, including government entities. Civil lawsuits generally proceed through distinct steps: pleadings, discovery, trial, and possibly an appeal. However, parties can halt this process by voluntarily settling at any time. Most cases settle before reaching trial. Arbitration is sometimes another alternative to a trial.

Pleadings Each party in a lawsuit files initial papers, known as "pleadings." The pleadings explain each party's side of the dispute.

The Complaint: Litigation begins when the plaintiff files a complaint with the court and formally delivers a copy to the defendant. The complaint describes what the defendant did (or failed to do) that caused harm to the plaintiff and the legal basis for holding the defendant responsible for that harm.

The Answer: The defendant is given a specific amount of time to file an answer to the complaint. The answer provides the defendant's side of the dispute. The defendant may also file counter-claims against the plaintiff, alleging that the plaintiff has harmed the defendant and should be held liable for that harm. Sometimes, the plaintiff responds to the defendant's answer or counter-claims by filing a reply. In some instances, in lieu of an answer or reply, a party may request that the other party clarify or correct deficiencies in its factual allegations or legal theories, or may ask the court to dismiss part or all of the suit. This may lead to amended complaints or amended answers. Once the parties have completed the complaint, answer, and any reply, the issues for resolution by the court have been defined.

Settlement Conference Settlement Conference: Parties and their representatives must attend the settlement conference on the date indicated in the Notice of Settlement Conference.

The purpose of your settlement conference is to:

a) Resolve some or all of the issues in the action.

b) Encourage settlement of the action.

c) Help you get ready for trial.

d) Provide full disclosure among the parties of all the relevant facts and evidence.

There are many good reasons why parties should try to settle their dispute before going to trial: a) It saves time;

b) It saves money;

c) It avoids the complexity of a trial; and

d) It gives you the power to resolve your dispute on your own, rather than have the judge resolve it for you.

The role of the judicial officer at a settlement conference is to listen to the parties positions, to deal with any procedural problems, and to give you an opinion of how your case will likely be decided if it goes to trial. There is no obligation to settle. A good settlement is one where both parties have engaged in a fair compromise.

Expert Witnesses

Often a claim or defense requires support from expert witnesses to explain technical information or validate an argument. One or more experts might be needed to testify about the connection between the defendant's conduct and the loss suffered by the plaintiff, or the existence and amount of the plaintiff's damages. Expert witnesses work closely with a party's representatives and attorneys to prepare the party's case.

Motions

Before trial, the parties may use motions to ask the court to rule or act. Motions usually pertain to law or facts in the case, but sometimes they seek clarification or resolution of procedural disputes between the parties. Some motions, such as a motion for summary judgment, which asks the court to dismiss part or all of a plaintiff's case or a defendant's defense, dispose of issues without trial. Other motions might ask the court to order a party to produce documents or to exclude evidence from trial.

Timing

The duration of a lawsuit depends on the issues of the case, the amount of discovery to be conducted, and court scheduling and availability. The parties, guided by the rules of court, usually decide the timing of discovery. Trial dates are set by the court. Timing and scheduling differ between state and federal courts.

Trial

At trial, the parties present evidence in support of their claims or defenses to a judge. Trial: Immediately before trial, each party provides to the judge a document, called a "brief," that outlines the arguments and evidence to be used at trial. Once the trial begins, each party presents its outline of the case in an opening statement. Then, the parties present evidence. Each party may call witnesses or introduce documents and exhibits in support of its arguments. After each witness is called and questioned, the opposing party has an opportunity to cross-examine the witness. The plaintiff presents evidence first, then the defendant. Sometimes, the plaintiff is allowed to present additional evidence, called rebuttal evidence, after the defendant has finished presenting its case. Once all the evidence has been presented, the parties give their closing arguments. After closing arguments the judge then deliberates and reaches a decision.

Costs and Fees

The party who prevails at trial will request court to order the losing party to pay the prevailing party's costs to prosecute or defend the case. Recoverable costs are defined by rule, statute, or private

Appeal

Following trial, a party dissatisfied with the result may appeal. During an appeal, a party asks a higher court to review the trial court proceeding. The parties present their arguments in briefs, which are submitted to the appellate court along with the record of evidence from the trial court. The appellate court usually reviews a case for legal error only. Except under unusual circumstances, the appellate court will not review factual evidence or override a jury's findings of fact. The appellate court announces its decision in a document called an opinion. The appellate court will affirm the verdict if it finds that there was no error in the trial court proceeding. However, if there was an error, the appellate court can reverse the verdict or order the trial court to conduct a new trial. An appeal can extend the litigation process by a year or more.

Alternatives to Litigation

Alternatives to litigation usually save time and expense, but they may not result in a final resolution of the dispute. The desirability of these alternatives should be evaluated early to allow their timely implementation. Settlement: It is generally wise at the outset of any litigation proceeding to review the potential for an out-of-court settlement. Indeed, most matters settle before reaching the trial stage.

Settlement can be discussed by any party at any time during litigation and is often a cost- effective alternative to trial. Usually the court does not require the parties to discuss or attempt

settlement, but most courts have procedures by which a party can request the court's assistance in settlement.

Teamwork

A positive result in litigation is nearly always the product of teamwork. By using a team approach, clients and legal counsel can adopt the litigation strategy that best suits the clients' risk tolerance and overall business objectives. Clients contribute by providing business expertise and knowledge of the facts. Legal counsel, meanwhile, provide expertise on the legal issues, the trial process, the client's options for resolution, and the potential risks and rewards of each option.

4What are the Basic Steps in the Tribunal/Landlord Tenant Process?
Currently Updating.

1Are you Hiring?
We are seeking a paralegal to join our growing litigation practice We are interested in hearing from junior paralegals with 2 to 5 years of experience. The successful candidate will have strong academic credentials, excellent research and drafting skills, the ability to work independently comfort appearing before the courts or other tribunals and an entrepreneurial spirit.
2Training, Mentoring & Coaching?
Our firm offers Training, Mentoring & Coaching programs for paralegals Our personalized approach to coaching, combined with more than 8 years of Training, Mentoring & Coaching experience, sets us apart from other companies and provides you with the individualized attention you need. Together you will create a vision for where you want to be in business, then develop specific plans to get you there and develop your training skills along the way.This is intended for new and experienced paralegals.
3Internship or Volunteer?
Internships and Volunteering are a great introduction to the Paralegal field and a way to get valuable hands-on training while doing meaningful work that has a real impact. When you join us as an intern , you get a chance to gain relevant work experience, further develop your skills and find the area of our business that’s the best fit for you. And we benefit too – from your talent, enthusiasm and fresh ideas.

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