Legal Aid Saskatchewan is committed to providing quality legal advice and court representation to individuals who find the cost of certain services financially burdensome. You may qualify for legal aid if you meet the following criteria:
- You meet Legal Aid Saskatchewan’s financial eligibility criteria.
- Your legal issue falls within the scope of the guidelines established by Legal Aid Saskatchewan.
- Legal Aid Saskatchewan deems your legal matter as having sufficient professional merit.
Support for Criminal Matters
Types of Criminal Case Support Services from Legal Aid Saskatchewan
Brydges Line: Free phone consultation to anyone under police custody. The police will facilitate the call to this line, and it is accessible to everyone.
Duty Counsel Service: A criminal lawyer will assist you at a bail hearing. It's specifically designed for those currently on remand, with no associated costs, and is open to everyone.
Full Representation: In this service, a criminal defencelawyer will handle your case. This service targets low-income individuals who are facing incarceration. The merit of the case will also be evaluated by the assigned criminal lawyer.
What is the Financial Criteria for Legal Aid?
The financial eligibility is assessed through two key aspects: the asset test and the income test. Legal Aid staff will ascertain if you can afford a lawyer without their assistance by evaluating your income, your spouse’s income, and the number of children you have.
Typically, you are eligible for legal aid if you are a low-income worker, receive social assistance, disability assistance (SAP/SAID), or band assistance and you have limited assets.
Does My Case Qualify for Legal Aid?
Legal Aid may provide assistance in areas such as:
- Adult Criminal Charges: If found guilty, offences that could potentially lead to jail time or job loss. Example offences include assault, theft, burglary, fraud, and impaired driving resulting in injury.
- Youth Criminal Charges: As of April 7, 2008, Legal Aid Saskatchewan has been providing legal services to all youths charged under the YCJA.
Please consult with your local Legal Aid office to understand if your specific case qualifies for aid. Contact Nicholas Robinson at (306) 585-1777 if you are not eligible for Legal Aid or would like to retain private paid counsel.
Applying for Legal Aid
How do I apply for Legal Aid?
To apply for Legal Aid, call the application centre at 1 (800) 667-3764 from Monday to Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:45 p.m., or complete the online application form. Be prepared to provide the following supporting documents:
- Identification (such as social insurance card, Treaty card, driver's licence)
- Any documents pertinent to your case, like court orders, separation agreements, papers related to your criminal charge
- Proof of current income (pay stubs, social/disability assistance cheque stubs)
- Recent bank statements or books
- Income tax returns (if self-employed or seasonally employed)
- Proof of the value of your assets (car, RRSPs, etc.)
How long does it take?
Legal Aid staff may be able to instantly confirm your eligibility. They might require you to fill out some forms before the application. If your situation is urgent or a court date has been set, make sure to notify the Legal Aid staff promptly.
Seeking Lawyer Help? Get a Free Consultation With a Skilled Criminal Lawyer
If you have been charged with a criminal offence and do not qualify for Legal Aid, don't hesitate to reach out to us. Call (306) 585-1777 and a criminal defence lawyer would be delighted to discuss your case with you and explore your options.