PBLA Court-Based Programs

PBLA administers the Civil Claims Duty Counsel project and Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program in Calgary and Edmonton. These programs provide assistance for civil matters at courthouses in each city. No appointment or pre-registration is required; all programs operate on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that these programs do not assist with family, criminal or corporate law matters, matters at the Court of Appeal or other Appeal Courts, or pre-trial conferences and mediations.

Civil Claims Duty Counsel

The Civil Claims Duty Counsel (CCDC) project is a legal advice clinic that provides assistance for those involved in civil matters in the Provincial Court in Calgary and Edmonton. Examples of these matters include landlord and tenant disputes, small claims, insurance or personal injury, and employment matters (all valued under $50,000). Volunteer lawyers are available to provide free 30-minute consultations and can provide summary legal advice; information on court procedure; help preparing for trials, motions and other appearances; and help completing forms.

Calgary

Location:
Calgary Courts Centre (601 – 5 Street SW)
15th Floor, Rooms S15-06, S15-23, S15-39

Hours:
Monday 12:30 PM – 4:00PM
Tuesday – Friday 9:00AM – 12:00PM, 12:30PM – 4:00PM

Edmonton

Location:
Edmonton Law Courts (1A Sir Winston Churchill Square)
2nd Floor, Provincial Court, Ante Room 262A

Hours:
Tuesday 10:00AM – 2:00PM
Wednesday 12:00PM – 4:00PM
Thursday 9:00AM – 4:00PM

Queen’s Bench Court Assistance – Calgary

The Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program in Calgary provides assistance to the public in civil matters at the Court of Queen’s Bench. In the morning, volunteer lawyers are available to provide assistance to those without legal representation who need help with their Morning Chambers appearances. This includes assistance with applications, bankruptcy, motions and other appearances. This is not a legal advice clinic.

In the afternoon, volunteers are available at a legal advice clinic for civil matters at the Court of Queen’s Bench. Examples of these matters include foreclosure and bankruptcy, builder’s liens, wills and estates, or other civil matters. Volunteer lawyers are available to provide free 30-minute consultations and can provide summary legal advice; information on court procedure; help preparing for trials, motions and other appearances; and help completing forms.

Morning Chambers
Location:
Calgary Courts Centre (601 – 5 Street SW)
9th and 10th Floors, North

Hours:
Tuesday – Thursday 9:00AM – 12:30PM

Legal Advice Clinic
Location:
Calgary Courts Centre (601 – 5 Street SW)
8th Floor North, Room 8-49

Hours:
Tuesday – Thursday 1:00PM – 4:00PM

Queen’s Bench Court Assistance – Edmonton

The Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program in Edmonton provides assistance to the public in civil matters at the Court of Queen’s Bench. Volunteer lawyers are available to provide assistance to those without legal representation who need help with their Morning Chambers appearances. This includes assistance with applications, bankruptcy, motions and other appearances. This is not a legal advice clinic.

Morning Chambers

Location:
Edmonton Law Courts (1A Sir Winston Churchill Square)
Law Library, Room 2028C
2nd Floor, South Tower

Hours:
Wednesday 9:00AM – 12:30PM

*Assistance in all court-based programs is subject to meeting program guidelines and is not guaranteed.

PBLA Recognizes Black History Month

Each February, Canada recognizes Black History Month and honours the contributions of Black Canadians. This month, we are highlighting the commitment to pro bono service exemplified by the following Pro Bono Law Alberta volunteers and champions.

Angela Egbase
Angela pix 4 Final-originalAngela Egbase has volunteered with the Civil Claims Duty Counsel Project and the Queen’s Bench Court Assistance Program. She was awarded a 2017 PBLA Outstanding Volunteer Award in recognition of her volunteer activities on these programs.

Angela completed her legal education in Nigeria, where she practiced for a number of years before immigrating to Canada. She was called to the Alberta Bar in 2015, and now practices at AE LEGAL with a focus on estate planning, family law, and real estate law. Outside of her pro bono work with PBLA, Angela is also a past volunteer at Calgary Legal Guidance, one of Alberta’s pro bono legal clinics, where she donated her time as a volunteer researcher.

Rukaiyat Lawal
Rukaiyat Lawal began her time with PBLA as a volunteer for both the Civil Claims Duty Counsel and Queen’s Bench Court Assistance programs, and later joined the PBLA staff as the Edmonton Court-Based Program Coordinator. During her time as a volunteer, she was the recipient of two 2018 PBLA Outstanding Volunteer Awards for her contributions to both programs.

Rukaiyat completed her legal education in Nigeria, and after immigrating to Canada received the Certificate of Qualification from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. When not supporting the Edmonton court-based programs for PBLA, Rukaiyat is an avid volunteer in the pro bono sector, volunteering for the Elizabeth Fry Society of Edmonton and the Edmonton Community Legal Centre. She is an active member of the Canadian Bar Association – Alberta Branch, where she sits on the Legislative Review Committee, which is responsible for reviewing and commenting on bills introduced in the Alberta Legislature. Outside of the legal sector, Rukaiyat volunteers for the Kids Food Basket Campaign, where she collaborates with the Edmonton Food Bank to empower, educate and provide food to Canadian families in need.

Wasiu Omotoso
wasiu omotosoWasiu Omotoso is a former PBLA volunteer who was a recipient of the 2016 Outstanding Volunteer Award for his volunteer work at the Civil Claims Duty Counsel Project, which provides free legal consultations to members of the public on civil matters at the Provincial Court.

Wasiu began his legal education in Nigeria, and went on to complete his Master of Laws at the University of Manitoba in 2014. After completing his articles at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in Calgary, he was called to the Bars of Alberta and Ontario in 2016. Wasiu has since moved to Toronto where he is now Legal Counsel at Walsh Canada, the Canadian subsidiary of The Walsh Group, one of the largest construction companies in North America.

Charles Osuji
profile-pic-charles_White-BackgroundCharles Osuji is a champion for pro bono causes, and an active mentor for internationally trained lawyers in Alberta. Through his work with internationally trained lawyers, he was referred numerous volunteers to pro bono organizations around our province, including PBLA.

Charles received his legal education in Nigeria, and was admitted to the Alberta Bar in 2014. He began articling at what was then called Smith Law Office, and became a named partner in 2016, and sole owner of Osuji & Smith in 2017. Charles currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Calgary Regional Immigrant Employment Council, where he also volunteers as a mentor to other internationally trained professionals. He has previously volunteered for the Elizabeth Fry Society of Calgary and the Alberta Civil Liberties Research Centre. Charles is also a volunteer for the Igbo Cultural Association, the Mustard Seed, and Habitat for Humanity.

Chidinma Thompson
IMG_4793Chidinma Thompson is an active PBLA volunteer, having been involved in both the Civil Claims Duty Counsel and Queen’s Bench Court Assistance programs with her firm Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, one of PBLA’s longstanding program partners. Chidinma is a partner in the Commercial Litigation and Regulatory Group at the BLG office in Calgary.

Chidinma received her law degree from University of Nigeria and her Master of Law at the University of Calgary. She also received her Ph.D. in law from the University of Calgary in 2014, being the first Ph.D. graduate from the faculty of law. She has taught various law courses at the University of Calgary. In addition to her pro bono work with PBLA, Chidinma is an active volunteer at Youth Law at the Alex (formerly the Children’s Legal and Educational Resource Centre), a law student mentor through the Canadian Bar Association and a student mentor at Student Legal Assistance.

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These volunteers represent only a small number of the dedicated volunteer lawyers, law students and internationally trained lawyers who generously donate their time to support pro bono causes in Alberta. PBLA is thankful for the contributions of all its volunteers; their support is invaluable in providing access to justice for unrepresented people across our province.

 

PBLA Technical Difficulties

Pro Bono Law Alberta is currently experiencing technical difficulties that are affecting email access.

If you need to contact a member of the PBLA team, please do so by phone. Staff can be reached on their direct lines, or you can contact the PBLA general phone line at 403-541-4804.

Our response time may be delayed as we work to restore email service. We thank you for your patience at this time.

PBLA Board President to Receive Distinguished Service Award

Join us in congratulating PBLA Board President Kevin Feth, QC, who has been announced as the winner of the 2019 Distinguished Service Award for Service to the Profession.

Kevin is a partner at Field LLP where he primarily practices in the areas of labour & employment, education and aboriginal law, and civil litigation. A graduate of the University of Alberta Faculty of Law, Kevin completed his Bachelor of Laws in 1989 and was called to the bar in 1990.

A long-time supporter of access to justice in our province, Kevin has volunteered his time with a number of organizations with the aim of providing pro bono legal services to those in need, and increasing access to justice for all Albertans. Kevin first joined the PBLA Board of Directors in March 2009 and was elected Vice President in September of the same year. He served as Vice President through 2013, when he stepped down to serve as President-Elect, and then President of the Law Society of Alberta. Kevin returned to PBLA in March 2015 and  was elected President in June of that year.

Prior to joining PBLA’s Board, Kevin was active with Student Legal Services of Edmonton, the student-run pro bono legal clinic at the University of Alberta Faculty of Law, where he served as a case worker and later Board Chair. He also served for five years as a supervising lawyer with Pro Bono Students Canada. Most recently, he was the Chair of the Law Society of Alberta Legal Aid Agreement Task Force, and was instrumental in negotiating the new Legal Aid Alberta Governance Agreement and the $70 million increase to legal aid funding, which were announced by Premier Rachel Notley and Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley in October 2018. Alberta’s legal aid system is expected to  serve an estimated 7,000 additional people as a result of those changes.

In addition to his extensive work in the community, Kevin has distinguished himself within the legal profession. He is the current Chair of Field Law’s Post-Secondary Education Practice Group, and past Chair of the Labour and Employment Practice Group in Edmonton. He previously taught Labour Law at the University of Alberta Faculty of Law, and co-authored Remedies in Labour, Employment and Human Rights Law (Carswell, 1999). He was a member of the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) provincial and national Councils, Chair of the CBA National Civil Litigation Section and Sections Council, and has sat on numerous Law Society of Alberta committees and task forces since early in his career.

PBLA is honoured to have such an outstanding member of the profession serving as Board President, and we ask you to join us in congratulating Kevin for this well-deserved honour.

The Distinguished Service Awards are jointly awarded by the Canadian Bar Association – Alberta Branch and the Law Society of Alberta. The awards luncheon will take place on Tuesday, February 5 in Edmonton.

PBLA is Hiring!

Applications are now being accepted for PBLA’s 2019 summer law student position.

We are looking for a student who has successfully completed their second year of law school to work with us at our Calgary office from May to August 2019.

The summer law student will support the delivery of PBLA programs and key initiatives. Key responsibilities include:

  • Providing support to various programs and projects including the Civil Claims Duty Counsel (CCDC) project and the Queen’s Bench (QB) Amicus Program;
  • Reviewing and updating legal resource manuals on broad areas of law;
  • Revising and updating volunteer training manuals;
  • Researching legal topics touching on pro bono legal service delivery and pro bono models that incorporate technology in the delivery of pro bono legal services; and
  • Other program and administrative support, as required.

The deadline to apply is Friday, March 8, 2019. Click here to view the full position details and application information.

LawNow Magazine Jan-Feb Issue

LawNow Magazine is a free digital magazine published six times per year by the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta.

Read the January-February 2019 issue

FREE Public Legal Education Workshops Jan and Feb – Edmonton

Edmonton Community Legal Centre (ECLC) will host free Public Legal Education workshops in January and February 2019. These presentations are open to the public and certain locations require registration.

NOTE: Video Versions of ECLC presentations are now available online:

ECLC continues to hold the Family Law Series Presentations at the Downtown Enterprise Square Branch Library 10212 Jasper Avenue NW every Thursday evening at 6:30 PM. These presentations are open to the public with the option to register to be contacted for a potential follow-up meeting with a Family Law Lawyer for additional assistance. The schedules for the topics are as follows:

  • Child Custody and Parenting: January 10, January 31, February 21
  • Child and Spousal Support: January 17, February 7, February 28
  • Property Division: January 24, February 14,

Posters for the events are online at http://www.eclc.ca/programs-services/legal-education/.