Completing the Paralegal Licensing Process Application

Deadline for Application: December 1, 2017, 5:00 p.m. E.S.T.

Your completed application and application fee must be received by the Licensing and Accreditation Department on or before the deadline to avoid the late filing fee.

If you have previously applied to the Ontario Paralegal Licensing Process you should not re-apply online. Please advise the Licensing and Accreditation Department to obtain further information and instructions on how to proceed by calling 416-947-3315 or toll free at 1-800-668-7380 ext. 3315.  (If you currently hold a lawyer license in Ontario, you must notify Membership Services at the Law Society prior to obtaining your paralegal licence.)

This application will allow you to apply to write the February/July/October 2018 or February 2019 Licensing Examinations. It is recommended to those who wish to select the February 2019 sitting that they instead apply in the October 2018 intake period. Please also note that candidates who select the earliest February sitting (2018) will be placed in the earlier 2017/18 Licensing Process cycle which will result in the candidate having two subsequent licensing cycles (instead of  three) to complete their licensing requirements. Please contact the Licensing and Accreditation Department if you require further information on the impact of selecting a Licensing Examination in an earlier licensing cycle.
 

There are two parts to the Paralegal Licensing Process Application:

Part I consists of the online entry of your information and payment of the non-refundable application fee of $160.00 (plus applicable taxes). If a third party is paying the application fee on your behalf, you are required to make the payment and then have the third party reimburse you directly for the fee. After completing Part I online, a PDF application file will be created as well as your Law Society online account. You may access the PDF of your application from your newly-assigned Law Society online account. Please read the instructions for both parts of the application submission process prior to commencing your online application.

     Personal Information Section

     Proof of Legal Name Section

     Voluntary Information Section

     Good Character Section

     Proof of Education Section

     Accommodation Section

     Paralegal Licensing Examination Section

     Completion of Part I of the Paralegal Licensing application process

Part II requires you to file, with the Licensing and Accreditation Department, a printed copy of your application along with the required supporting documents, duly commissioned or notarized. Detailed instructions are provided throughout the online application process and in the PDF document provided upon completion of your online application.

     Process for Certification of Documents

     Submitting Photos

     Submitting Proof of Legal Name

     Submitting Good Character Information

     Submitting the Declaration and Obligations page

     Application Fee and Late Fee Payments

     Submitting the Application Package

 After you Apply

 

 


 

If either your online application (Part I) or the commissioned/notarized printed copy of your PDF application and supporting documents (Part II) are received by the Licensing and Accreditation Department after the deadline of December 1, 2017, a late filing fee of $75.00 (plus applicable taxes) will be applied to your account. Applications with an outstanding application fee or incomplete documentation will not be processed.

It is strongly recommended that you apply by the deadline in order to avoid the late filing fee, to ensure your eligibility to obtain the study materials and that registration for the Licensing Examination is not delayed or jeopardized.

Your application will normally be processed within 30 business day‎s of receipt. During peak application periods it may take slightly longer for your application and supporting documents to be processed.

Once your online account has been created and part two of your application has been sent, please log in weekly to review any messages from Licensing and Accreditation pertaining to your application and supporting documentation.

To sit the Paralegal Licensing Examination, you must:

  • have completed all course requirements of an accredited Paralegal program from a Ministry-approved college
  • instructed the college to issue a final official transcript to the Licensing and Accreditation Department
  • file a Statement of Field Placement Form and
  • file all other required documents and pay the exam and material fees at least 30 business days prior to the sitting of the Paralegal Licensing Examination. 

Applicable fees for the Licensing Examination and the study materials must also be paid in full at least 30 business days prior to the Paralegal Licensing Examination date in order to sit the Licensing Examination.

Fee and Payment Information

The Licensing Process Fees Schedule is available on the Fees and Forms page. Candidates who apply and pay their application fee by the deadline are generally billed the Licensing Examination and study material fee in February 2018. If you apply after February, you will be billed the examination and material fee as soon as your application is received and processed.

Licensing Process fees are due in full on or before May 25, 2018 for those writing in July 2018. Arrangements for payment via the Law Society's Monthly Payment Plan are made with the Accounts Office of the Law Society and the enrollment form for this plan must be submitted by the deadline indicated on the form. Candidates writing later examinations must ensure they pay in full prior to the 30 business day deadline. The Licensing Process fee includes a first write of the Licensing Examination and access the study materials.

 

 Part I - Completing the Online Application 

Part I - Personal Information Section 

In this section of the online application, please provide your valid personal and confidential email address to which you have regular access to and will be valid for at least the next year while your are in the Licensing Process. Please do not use an email address which you may share with a friend, family member or colleague and ensure you are the only person accessing this account.

Personal contact information should be entered in full. It is your responsibility to update this information each time there is a change, up to the time you are licensed. In addition to your full legal name (as it appears on the documentation) you are to submit, you may also enter your common or preferred name in the area provided. Please note that the Law Society may use this name in communications, however your full legal name will be used on all legal documents, including the certificate issued by the Law Society upon your completion of the Paralegal Licensing Process.

Date of Birth: Enter the day/month/year of your birth.

Part I - Proof of Legal Name Section 

The acceptable forms for proof of legal name are listed on the first screen of the online application. If you are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, you must submit one of the items listed below from a) to e) as your proof of legal name. You must ensure the document is duly commissioned or notarized before you submit it to the Law Society. If you are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, Passports, Baptismal Certificates, Registrations of Birth, Drivers Licences and Certificates of Indian Status cards are not proof of your full legal name.  Please note you will be required to submit notarized/commissioned copies of both sides of your legal name document.

Please note you are required to submit notarized/commissioned copies of both sides of your legal name document. 

  1. Canadian Birth Certificate
  2. Canadian Citizenship Identification 
    Wallet sized Canadian Citizenship ID or the citizenship certificate issued after February 1, 2012. Both sides of the ID card are required as your name or common usage on the photo side is not acceptable. Those who obtained Canadian Citizenship prior to February 15, 1977 must submit a certified copy of the document issued at the time by Citizenship Canada.
  3. Canadian Immigration Record
    Permanent Resident Card from the government of Canada, an IMM 1000, IMM 5292 or IMM 5688 Form.
  4. Canadian Certificate of Birth Abroad
  5. Statement of Birth or Statement of Live Birth
  6. Official Canadian Name Change Certificate
    Applicants must also select and submit one of a), b), c), d) or e)
  7. Marriage Certificate
    Need only be indicated by those applicants adopting a spousal surname. Applicants must also select and submit one of a), b), c), d) or e).

This document must confirm your legal name, be valid at the time of application and at the time of licensing. Should your document expire while you are in the Licensing Process, it is your responsibility to provide a valid updated document as soon as possible. 

The following documents are accepted by the Law Society as proof of your legal name if you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada. You must submit a "certified true" copy of your valid passport (the identification page is adequate) and one of the following documents with your application:

  • Your valid Temporary Resident Visa issued by the Canadian government or;
  • Your valid Study Permit issued by the Canadian government or;
  • Your valid Work Permit issued by the Canadian government.

The Law Society’s Licensing and Accreditation Department accepts certain documents issued outside of Canada. Namely, documents supporting applications for an exemption or abridgement and certain legal name documents such as marriage certificates issued abroad. As part of those and other administrative processes, we often receive documents that are not in English or French. Therefore, we ask that documents not issued in English or French be translated by an Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario (ATIO) Certified Translator. Candidates are solely responsible for ensuring the translation is completed by an Ontario ATIO Certified Translator and is sent to Licensing and Accreditation for review and verification.

You may wish to refer to ATIO's Directory of Certified Translators on its website at www.atio.on.ca. Your document(s) will not be reviewed/processed by Licensing and Accreditation unless they are accompanied by a translated document from an ATIO Certified Translator, as well as an affidavit attesting to its authenticity. 

An application is deemed incomplete without the required valid documentation that confirms your full legal name. Applicants who cannot provide the above proof of legal name items at the time of application must do so as soon as they are able to or they will not be permitted to complete any component of the Paralegal Licensing Process. Original documents submitted will not be returned.  

If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, a passport will be acceptable as proof of legal name. In addition, you must provide supporting documentation issued by the Canadian government, which permits you to enter, reside and study in Canada during the time you are completing the Paralegal Licensing Process. You are personally responsible for obtaining such documentation from the relevant Canadian government agency or office. 

Part I - Voluntary Information Section 

The Law Society is gathering statistics on the composition of the profession to better understand demographic trends in the profession, to develop programs and initiatives within the mandate of the Law Society and to promote equality and diversity in the profession.

The Law Society is committed to promoting equality and diversity in the legal profession and to enhancing legal services provided by and for Indigenous, Francophone and equality-seeking communities. The Ontario Human Rights Code and the Rules of Professional Conduct promote equality on the grounds of race, ancestry, place of origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, family status or disability.

These questions are to be completed voluntarily and the information collected will be kept confidential. The information will only be available in aggregate form and will not be used to identify individual paralegals.

Part I - Good Character Section 

Your answers and supporting documentation regarding this section will be reviewed by the Licensing and Accreditation Department and forwarded to the Law Society's Complaints and Compliance Department for further review. In order for your file to be reviewed, you must ensure you provide all fees, information and supporting documentation at the time of application. Your file and good character section will be reviewed once you submit all application requirements. More information is available on the Good Character Requirement webpage.

If the answer to any of these questions changes at any time during the Licensing Process, and up to the time you are licensed, you must notify the Law Society in writing immediately by submitting a "Good Character Amendment Form" available online under the "Fees and Forms" section.

Candidates wishing to preview the Good Character questions prior to applying online may do so by viewing this form. Candidate must answer “yes” or “no” to each question in this section of the online application. Any answer of “yes” requires you to provide an explanation and/or related document(s) to the response. Answer each question with either a “yes” or “no”. With respect to Question 1 of the good character section of the application, answer "no" if:

(a) under the Young Offenders Act or Youth Criminal Justice Act, you were found guilty of an offence and the disposition was an absolute discharge and it has been one year since you were found guilty;

(b) under the Young Offenders Act or Youth Criminal Justice Act, you were found guilty of an offence and the disposition was a conditional discharge and it has been three years since you were found guilty;

(c) under the Young Offenders Act or Youth Criminal Justice Act, you were found guilty of a summary conviction offence and it has been three years since all dispositions in respect of the offence were made or completed, whichever is applicable; or

(d) under the Young Offenders Act or Youth Criminal Justice Act, you were found guilty of an indictable conviction offence and it has been five years since all dispositions in respect of the offence were made or completed, whichever is applicable.

Part I - Proof of Education Section 

The Law Society Act requires that persons seeking application to the Law Society's Paralegal Licensing Process provide a final transcript verifying that they have graduated from a Law Society-accredited Paralegal program in Ontario, offered by a college that has been approved by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.

A final "official" transcript is required for the candidate's Licensing Process file. The official transcript must be requested by the candidate and sent directly from the issuing institution to the Licensing and Accreditation Department no later than 30 business days prior to the date of the examination you wish to write.

If you receive information, at any time, that you were unsuccessful in obtaining your Paralegal diploma, degree or certificate, you must immediately notify the Licensing and Accreditation Department in writing and comply with the Paralegal Licensing Process Policies for withdrawal.

If your school or diploma/degree name is accredited and not listed in the drop down menu of the application section, please contact the Licensing and Accreditation Department immediately for further instruction. If your college or program is not accredited, you will not be permitted to apply to the Paralegal Licensing Process.

All candidates must do the following upon completing the field placement and graduating:

  • Once the Field Placement is completed: A Statement of Field Placement form must be completed (available online on the "Fees and Forms" page) and submitted by the candidate to the Licensing and Accreditation Department. The form must be received by the Licensing and Accreditation Department no later than 30 business days prior to the examination date selected or the candidate must defer to the next sitting of the examination.
  • By 30 business days before the examination: The candidate must request from their school that a final "official" transcript be sent to the Licensing and Accreditation Department. Only final transcripts sent directly from the school will be considered "official". The transcript must indicate the candidate's accredited degree/diploma name and the actual date of graduation (month and year). Please note your institution does not automatically send this document; you must request it from the institution upon completion of your program. Please note that transcripts submitted by the candidate will not be accepted.

If any of the required documents are not sent by the appropriate deadlines or within the timelines required, the candidate may risk being removed from or being required to defer to the next available Paralegal Licensing Examination sitting. 

Part I - Accommodation Section 

Candidates may request accommodation in the Licensing Process based on a condition that arises from an enumerated ground listed in the Human Rights Code, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.19.

The Law Society can provide accommodations for licensing examinations to candidates with documented need. Candidates must be registered for a licensing examination and have paid or completed their financial arrangements with the Law Society to make a request for accommodation for the licensing examination.

Required forms and supporting documentation for an accommodation request must be received in Examination Administration no later than 30 business days prior to the Licensing Examination for which accommodation is sought. For details and deadlines, see the Law Society’s Accommodations webpage. 

Part I - Paralegal Licensing Examination Section 

In this section of the application you must select your preferred date and language for the Paralegal Licensing Examination. The examination and study material fees are due on May 25, 2018 for those writing in July 2018 and hoping to receive study materials during the May distribution period. Candidates writing at a later sitting in the 2018-19 cycle may pay their fee by the deadline if they wish to receive materials during the distribution period in May.

The Paralegal Licensing Examination is held in Toronto only.

The Paralegal Licensing Examination will be seven hours in length and open book. There is a break after the first three and a half hours of the examination. The Law Society will provide you with the necessary Licensing Examination study materials (available in May 2018) to commence self-study preparation for the Paralegal Licensing Examination. In July 2018, you will receive a confirmation notice in your online account prior to the Licensing Examination date you have selected. Examination dates and venues are subject to change.

It is your responsibility to read the Paralegal Licensing Examination Rules and Protocol and the Licensing Process Policies prior to your Licensing Examination.

Completion of Part I of the Paralegal Licensing application process

You should submit your application fee payment online with a credit card at the time you apply. The application fee is non-refundable. Payment may also be made in person at the Law Society during business hours or by sending a certified cheque or money order to the Accounts Office at the Law Society. Payment must be made by the deadline to avoid a late fee.

Once you have completed the online application, you will be sent further information on how to complete Part II of the application process (filing the application) or review the information in Part II below.

You may log into your Law Society online account about 15 minutes after completing your online application in order to open and print your application document for Part II of the process.

 


 

Part II - Filing the Application with the Licensing and Accreditation Department

Part II - Process for Certification of Documents 

To certify all documents that must accompany the Paralegal Licensing Process application form, you must:

  • Present all original documents to a Commissioner of Oaths or a Notary Public who must attest to their authenticity.
  • Present the Commissioner of Oaths or Notary Public with the photocopies of these original documents.
  • Ensure the Commissioner or Notary Public certifies all the photocopies as "certified true" copies by affixing his/her signature seal, and/or membership number, thereby attesting to their authenticity.
  • Ensure you and the Commissioner/Notary Public date and sign your application.

Only "certified true" copies of documents can be submitted with your application. Original supporting documents must not be submitted to the Law Society.

It is acceptable to submit documents that may have been certified or commissioned outside of Canada. Please note you cannot certify your own documents. Please ensure you retain a photocopy of your completed and certified application form and supporting documents for your records. All documents submitted with the application are the property of the Law Society of Ontario and will not be returned to the candidate. Original supporting documents must not be submitted to the Law Society.

Part II - Submitting Photos 

You must submit two colour passport photos, taken within the last 12 months. Black and white photos will not be accepted.  

Print your full legal name in ink on the back of each photograph, as it appears on the legal name document(s) you will be submitting. The photos submitted must be identical, original passport photos that comply with Canadian passport photo requirements available online. Computer printed or generated photos will not be accepted.  

Affix one photo to the designated box on the first page of your application. Place the second photo in a secure envelope and paperclip it to the front of your application. Please do not staple the photo to the application. The second photo will be used to produce your Law Society candidate photo identification card, without which you will not be permitted to write the Paralegal Licensing Examination.

Part II - Submitting Proof of Legal Name 

The Law Society’s Licensing and Accreditation Department accepts certain documents issued outside of Canada. Namely, documents supporting applications for an exemption or abridgement and certain legal name documents such as marriage certificates issued abroad. As part of those and other administrative processes, we often receive documents that are not in English or French. Therefore, we ask that documents not issued in English or French be translated by an Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario (ATIO) Certified Translator. Candidates are solely responsible for ensuring the translation is completed by an Ontario ATIO Certified Translator and is sent to Licensing and Accreditation for review and verification.

You may wish to refer to ATIO's Directory of Certified Translators on its website at www.atio.on.ca. Your document(s) will not be reviewed/processed by Licensing and Accreditation unless they are accompanied by a translated document from an ATIO Certified Translator, as well as an affidavit attesting to its authenticity. 

You must attach only a certified "true" copy of the document(s) you indicated will serve as your proof of legal name when applying online.

It is your responsibility to follow up and provide the appropriate documentation to the Licensing and Accreditation Department as soon as you receive it. If you are submitting a Temporary Resident Visa, Study or Work Permit you must ensure the Licensing and Accreditation Department receives a commissioned or notarized copy with your application or you will not be permitted to complete any component of the Paralegal Licensing Process. All such documents must be current and valid until you are licensed.

Please ensure your documentation confirms the same name you have entered on the online application.

All applications for the Paralegal Licensing Process are incomplete until proper documentation has been received confirming your legal name. You will not be licensed until the required documents are filed.

Part II - Submitting Good Character Documents 

You must maintain good character status throughout the Paralegal Licensing Process, up to and including the time you are licensed. Failure to maintain good character status while enrolled in the Paralegal Licensing Process may delay or jeopardize your licensing.

All good character documents in support of a "yes" answer must be included with your application package when you have it commissioned or notarized. You must sign and clearly print your name and address on all supporting good character documents. 

If you provide an electronic file in support of your good character answer(s) when applying online, all files provided will be saved in your Law Society online account. You must print these files and include them with your paper copy submission to the Licensing and Accreditation Department.

Applications without the required explanation will be considered incomplete and will not be processed.

Part II - Submitting the Declaration and Obligations page 

You must sign the printed PDF application form in the presence of a Commissioner of Oaths or a Notary Public. In signing this application you agree to follow all the rules and regulations of the Law Society of Ontario as well as the Paralegal Licensing Process Policies. In signing this application you acknowledge the following procedures and agree to the following:

  • You have read and understand the contents and requirements of all sections in this application.
  • You declare under oath/solemnly affirm that the information in this application is current, complete and correct.
  • You undertake to notify the Law Society of Ontario in writing immediately should any of this information change prior to you being licensed by the Law Society of Ontario.
  • You undertake to file all required supporting documentation and pay all applicable fees by the prescribed deadlines.
  • You understand the Law Society of Ontario may commence an investigation and may commence a prosecution against you with respect to the provision of legal services without a licence.
  • You acknowledge that if you provide any false information to the Law Society in response to any question or inquiry in your Paralegal application or if you declare under oath or solemnly swear or affirm the contents of your Paralegal application falsely the Law Society may commence an investigation and may commence prosecution against you.
  • You hereby authorize the Law Society to investigate anything mentioned in your responses under the Good Character section of this application in order to determine whether you are of good character.
  • You hereby authorize the Law Society to make inquiries and request more information related to your application.
  • You acknowledge that, with the exception of the “Voluntary Information” section of  your Licensing Application, and medical and/or personal information provided as part of the “Accommodation” procedures for candidates in the Licensing Process, the information contained in your Licensing Application, as well as any information and documentation that subsequently form part of your Licensing file, may be shared with other divisions within the Law Society as required in order for the Law Society to fulfill its regulatory mandate

Part II - Application Fee and Late Fee Payments 

If you do not submit the application fee by credit card at the time you apply online, please ensure you mail a certified cheque or money order for the application fee payment directly to the Accounts Office. You may pay by credit card, debit card or cash in person at the Law Society's Client Service Centre Office. Please print your name, candidate ID number (available in your Licensing Process Account) and phone number clearly on the front of your certified cheque or money order. Personal cheques will not be accepted. Payment of the application fee (and late filing fee, if applicable) must be submitted for your application to be processed.

A late filing fee of $75.00 (plus applicable taxes) is payable if your application fee payment or your paper copy application is received after the application due date.

Part II - Preparing the Application Package 

Complete the checklist on the last page of the PDF version of your application prior to having all documents commissioned in order to ensure you have collected all required documents for submission with your application. Incomplete applications will not be processed. You are not required to submit this checklist.

Part II of the application process requires you to do the following by the application deadline:

1. Log into your Paralegal Licensing Process User Account and access your PDF application under “My Documents”. The file is created about 15 minutes after you complete the online application.

2. Print the PDF of your online application on 8 ½ X 11 paper (single sided only).

3. Print your supporting documentation for the Good Character section, if applicable.

4. Collect all required documentation to be included with your paper copy of the completed application that must be submitted to the Licensing and Accreditation Department.

5. Copy all your documents and have your application and all required supporting documentation commissioned or notarized. 

6. Once you complete your placement, complete a Statement of Field Placement form and submit it to the Licensing and Accreditation Department. This must be submitted as soon as you complete the placement and no later than 30 business days prior to your Licensing Examination. Your college does not send this form; you must submit it.

7. After you complete your diploma/degree you must also ensure that your college sends a final transcript directly to the Licensing and Accreditation Department. This must be done as soon as you complete your diploma/degree and received by the Licensing and Accreditation Department no later than 30 business days prior to the examination date.

8. Mail, courier or, during business hours, drop off your commissioned/notarized application and required documents to the Licensing and Accreditation Department. The package must be received by the Licensing and Accreditation Department on or before December 1, 2017, by 5 p.m. E.S.T. or a late filing fee will be applied to your account.

Note: mailed/couriered application packages must be received by the deadline date or a late filing fee will be applied. The Law Society is not responsible for delays in mail or courier deliveries.

If you did not submit the application fee by credit card at the time you applied online, please ensure you also mail a certified cheque or money order for the application fee payment to the Accounts Office. This must be received on or before December 1, 2017, by 5 p.m. E.S.T., or a late filing fee will be applied to your account.

PLEASE DO NOT FOLD OR BEND THE APPLICATION

Submit the application package in person or mail/courier it in a 9" X 12" envelope to:

Licensing and Accreditation Department
Law Society of Ontario
130 Queen Street West, 2nd floor
Toronto, ON
M5H 2N6


You may pay all fees online or send to:

Accounts Office
Paralegal Licensing Process - Application Payment
Law Society of Ontario
130 Queen Street West. 
Toronto, ON
M5H 2N6


If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, a passport will be acceptable as proof of legal name. In addition, you must provide supporting documentation issued by the Canadian government, which permits you to enter, reside and study in Canada during the time you are completing the Paralegal Licensing Process. You are personally responsible for obtaining such documentation from the relevant Canadian government agency or office. 

 


 

After you apply: 

Once you have applied to the Paralegal Licensing Process and your application has been received and verified, the Licensing and Accreditation Department will message you via your Law Society online account with relevant and time sensitive information. You are responsible for checking your Law Society online account regularly.

During the Paralegal Licensing Process, you must inform the Licensing and Accreditation Department of any changes to your mailing address, telephone number, email address or any status change subsequent to the filing of this application. Failure to do so will delay mailings and affect your status in the Paralegal Licensing Process and/or your eligibility for licensing.

If your application information changes at any time after you apply online please log into your Law Society online account to obtain the Application Amendment Form. This form must be used to submit changes to your application regarding proof of education information, good character questions or proof of legal name. You are required to have any changes indicated on this form commissioned or notarized before submitting the form to the Licensing and Accreditation Department.

In February 2018 specific invoicing and registration information will also be sent to your online account. The Licensing Process fees are due in full on May 25, 2018 for those writing in July 2018. Fees for subsequent sittings are due 30 business days prior to the examination date.

ALL FEES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE.