Alternative Legal Service Providers

Alternative Legal Service Providers

The Ministry of Justice and the Law Society of Saskatchewan jointly undertook a project to explore the possibility of allowing non-lawyers to provide some legal services.  In 2017, a Task Team - comprised of lawyers, individuals working in the legal system who are not lawyers and members of the public - was appointed to examine this issue and develop recommendations for consideration by the Benchers and the Ministry about the appropriate role, if any, of non-lawyers in the provision of legal services.  In carrying out its mandate, the Legal Services Task Team considered a wide range of possible approaches and kept the public interest central to its determination.

To assist the Task Team’s examination, an extensive consultation with legal organizations and other stakeholders within Saskatchewan’s justice system was conducted.  The Task Team has completed its work and released its final report.  The report includes a number of recommendations on how to improve the regulation and provision of legal services in the province.

The recommendations include:

  • providing greater clarity to service providers about what legal services are regulated;
  • expanding the list of exceptions to the prohibition against practicing law to recognize existing service providers;
  • providing the Law Society with licensing authority to allow service providers to practice law with a limited licence on a case-by-case basis;
  • modernizing the legislation regulating legal services to provide more flexibility for future developments in this area;
  • creating guidelines to help educate the public about legal services; and
  • conducting pilot projects to help develop and test the recommendations.

The final report can be found here.

The Benchers of the Law Society of Saskatchewan have considered the work of the Legal Services Task Team and have accepted the recommendations as outlined in the Task Team’s final report. The Benchers of the Law Society of Saskatchewan express appreciation for the extensive work of the Co-Chairs and the Legal Services Task Team and staff working group in examining this complex issue and commend those involved throughout the consultation process.

Subject to acceptance of the recommendations by the Government of Saskatchewan, and the requisite legislative amendments, the Law Society of Saskatchewan will implement the recommendations.