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Ontario budget includes proposed changes regarding the Law Society’s name, paralegals and contingency fees

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The 2018 Ontario Budget – A Plan For Care And Opportunity was released on Wednesday, March 22, 2018. Proposed amendments affecting the Law Society and legal profession in Ontario can be found in Chapter V, Section D: Amendments: Other Legislative Initiatives. In part, the text in the budget reads:

Amendments to the Law Society Act to change the Law Society’s name from the “Law Society of Upper Canada” to the “Law Society of Ontario” and to recognize paralegals as officers of the court in all courts in which they are authorized to provide legal services. Consequential amendments would also be made to various statutes.

Amendments to the Solicitors Act to remove the prohibition against including legal costs in a contingency fee agreement without court approval, and to apply contingency fee regulation to paralegals as it currently applies to lawyers.

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