How many steps are in the application process?
Applying to CLASP is a two-step process:
- Phone Interview
- In-Person Interview
Where do I start?
The first step in the application process is to call CLASP for an initial phone interview.
The purpose of the interview is to:
- Ask questions so that CLASP can understand your legal problem(s);
- Collect your contact information; and
- Determine if you are eligible for CLASP services.
The phone intake interview will take approximately 15 minutes.
All of CLASP’s contact information can be found on our Contact Us page.
What makes me eligible for CLASP’s services?
CLASP can only accept cases that meet a list of requirements. When we first talk with you on the phone, we are checking to make sure that you are someone that we can help.
- You meet the financial test set out by Legal Aid Ontario
- You live in a place live within the City of Toronto (you have a postal code starting with “M”) OR you have been charged with a crime and the charges are from a Toronto courthouse OR you have an employment law matter and work in or were terminated from a workplace within the City of Toronto.
- You have a legal problem that we help with
See our Legal Services page for a full list of the legal services that CLASP provides.
How do I know if I meet CLASP’s financial criteria?
As a Legal Aid Services Program, our financial criteria are established by Legal Aid Ontario. CLASP does not disclose the dollar amount of our financial cap. However, below are some examples of when you qualify for our services.
1. You will likely qualify if your SOLE source of income is from:
- Canada Pension Plan (CPP)
- Employment Insurance benefits (which are temporary and threatened)
- Old Age Security (OAS) pension, with Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS).
- Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) benefits
- Ontario Works (OW) benefits
- War Veterans Allowance
- Workers’ Compensation benefits (which are temporary and threatened)
2. You will automatically qualify if you are an undergraduate student at York University.
What happens if I don’t qualify for CLASP’s services?
If we cannot help you, CLASP will do our best to provide you with information on other places that might be able to help (“a referral”).
If I am calling about a criminal charge, do I need my disclosure?
IF YOU ARE CALLING CLASP FOR A CRIMINAL CHARGE YOU MUST HAVE YOUR DISCLOSURE IN FRONT OF YOU WHEN YOU CALL CLASP.
If you do not have your disclosure, CLASP will ask you to call back when you have received it.
What happens after CLASP interviews me over the phone?
If you qualify for CLASP’s services, we will book an interview time for you to come into the CLASP office so that we can ask you specific and detailed questions about your case. This will help us get a better understanding of your legal problem.
How long will the in-person interview take?
The in-person interview will take about 1 hour.
Please note that attending an in-person interview does NOT mean that your application has been accepted.
What do I need to bring to my interview?
Please bring all of the documents listed below to your in-person interview:
- Photo ID
- Proof of income for all members of your household
- Disclosure (if you are facing a criminal charge)
- Other relevant documents (e.g., relevant photographs, letters, etc.)
If you are a Family Law applicant, please bring the following documents:
- Most recent Agreement(s) or Court Order(s)
- For Family Law cases in litigation, court documents that you have been served with and that you have served
If you are an Employment Law applicant, please bring the following documents:
- Any employment agreements you have with your employer
- If you have been terminated, your termination letter
- If you are appealing a denial of employment insurance benefits, a copy of the reconsideration decision
- If you are appealing an officer’s decision on your employment standards claim, a copy of the officer’s decision
CLASP cannot make a decision about your application until we have all of the above applicable documents.
When will I know if my application has been accepted?
Once your application is complete, one of our students will review your case with a staff lawyer. They will make a decision whether to accept or deny your case.
When making a decision to accept or deny an application, CLASP uses its eligibility criteria, as well as the following guiding principles:
- Student capacity (including caseload and community development projects)
- Clinic and university closures (e.g., exams, training, holidays, etc.)
- Other factors specific to each case