“Time to put the legal in paralegal”

Intriguing news from Canada — paralegals may soon be regulated:

"Across Canada, paralegals provide a variety of services for a fraction of the price lawyers charge, but they do it with no training standards, no regulations and no professional body to license or discipline them.

"Ontario is set to change that.

"Bill 14 will regulate paralegals for the first time in Canada. The omnibus legislation, designed to increase access to justice, passed second reading last week and is expected to go to public hearings soon.

"Few, including paralegals themselves, disagree with the idea the profession needs regulating. But not everyone thinks the government’s legislation has it quite right.

"Some lawyers think it doesn’t make a clear distinction between paralegals and lawyers, leaving people vulnerable to being taken advantage of by paralegals.

"Some paralegals [PDF link] think the legislation’s design will drive them out of business, leaving people with no choice but to use higher-priced lawyers."

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