Fair Registration Practices Report - Paralegals 2015

The answers seen below were submitted to the OFC by the regulated professions. 

This Fair Registration Practices Report was produced as required by:

  • the Fair Access to Regulated Professions and Compulsory Trades Act (FARPACTA) s. 20 and 23(1), for regulated professions named in Schedule 1 of FARPACTA
  • the Health Professions Procedural Code set out in Schedule 2 of the Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA)
    s. 22.7 (1) and 22.9(1), for health colleges.

Index

  1. Qualitative Information 
  2. Quantitative Information 

1. Qualitative Information

a) Requirements for registration, including acceptable alternatives

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

As of August 2015, paralegal candidates are required to successfully complete a licensing examination that tests knowledge and skills in substantive, procedural, and ethics and professionalism competencies, as approved by Law Society Convocation in October 2012. The previous examination was focussed solely on ethics, professional responsibility and practice management.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

Candidates are now required to formally demonstrate entry-level competence based on an assessment which is framed around the competencies that are taught by the accredited college education programs. Candidates receive a full set of self-study materials to support their preparatory efforts. Unsuccessful candidates are provided with tutoring services paid for by the Law Society.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

Enhancements to the testing framework for paralegals allows the Law Society is able to fulfill its statutory mandate to regulate paralegals in the public interest and assure the public that licensed paralegals have met standards for entry to the profession. The new licensing examination protocols have required increases in allocation of staff resources and time, and increased expenditures for licensing examination development and administration.

b) Assessment of qualifications

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

c) Provision of timely decisions, responses, and reasons

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

d) Fees

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

e) Timelines

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

f) Policies, procedures and/or processes, including by-laws

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

g) Resources for applicants

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

Candidates are provided with a set of comprehensive Examination Study Materials to support preparatory efforts for the licensing examinations. In the spring of 2015, the Law Society delivered a live webcast to candidates to provide an overview of the new examination protocols. The webcast remains available on demand. Candidates who are unsuccessful on the licensing examination may avail themselves of tutoring services paid for by the Law Society.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

Candidates are provided with both preparatory and remedial resources to support their successful completion of the licensing process.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

The new licensing examination protocols have required increases in allocation of staff resources and time, and increased expenditures for licensing examination development and administration.

h) Review or appeal processes

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

i) Access to applicant records

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

j) Training and resources for registration staff, Council, and committee members

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

Law Society staff attended a number of relevant conferences, training events and regulatory industry events, including but not limited to the OFC Learning Day, ORAC Managing Cultural Differences Workshop, CNAR Annual Conference, CAMH training on accommodations in testing, and St. Stephen's Conflict Resolution Training.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

Staff remain apprised of best practices in registration, licensure and accommodation and apply these principles to their handling of candidate applications.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

Staff remain apprised of best practices in registration, licensure and accommodation and apply these principles to their handling of candidate applications.

k) Mutual recognition agreements

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

l) Other (include as many items as applicable)

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

iv. Describe any registration-related improvements/changes to your enabling legislation and/or regulations in the last year

No changes this year

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2. Quantitative Information

a) Languages

Indicate the languages in which application information materials were available in the reporting year.

Language Yes/No
English Yes
French Yes
Other (please specify)  

Additional comments:

b) Gender of applicants 

Indicate the number of applicants in each category as applicable.

Gender Number of Applicants
Male 393
Female 1058
None of the above 0

Additional comments:

c) Gender of members 

Indicate the number of members in each category as applicable. Select the option that best corresponds to the terminology used by your organization.

Gender Number of Members
Male  3357
Female  5523
None of the above 0

Additional comments: 

d) Jurisdiction where applicants obtained their initial education 

Indicate the number of applicants by the jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario Other Canadian Provinces USA Other International Unknown Total
1451 0 0 n/a 0
Total 0
 
0 1451 

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

e) Jurisdiction where applicants who became registered members obtained their initial education 

Indicate the number of applicants who became registered members in the reporting year by the jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario Other Canadian Provinces USA Other International Unknown Total
1371 0 0 n/a 0
Total 0
0 1371 

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

f) Jurisdiction where members were initially trained 

Indicate the total number of registered members by jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario Other Canadian Provinces USA Other International Unknown Total
7506 8073 0 n/a 0
Total 0
331 7506 

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

g) Applications processed

Indicate the number of applications your organization processed in the reporting year:

Jurisdiction where applicants were initially trained in the profession (before they were granted use of the protected title or professional designation in Ontario)
from January 1st to December 31st of the reporting year  Ontario Other Canadian Provinces USA Other International Unknown Total
New applications received 1451 0 0 0 0 1451
Applicants actively pursuing licensing (applicants who had some contact with your organization in the reporting year) 1384 0 0 0 0 1384
Inactive applicants (applicants who had no contact with your organization in the reporting year) 0 0 0 0 0 0
Applicants who met all requirements and were authorized to become members but did not become members 0 0 0 0 0 0
Applicants who became FULLY registered members 1371 0 0 0 0 1371
Applicants who were authorized to receive an alternative class of licence3 but were not issued a licence 0 0 0 0 0 0
Applicants who were issued an alternative class of licence3 0 0 0 0 0 0

1 An alternative class of licence enables its holder to practice with limitations, but additional requirements must be met in order for the member to be fully licensed.

Additional comments:

Pursuant to By-Law 4, candidates are entitled to 3 years to complete the licensing process requirements. Therefore, the number of candidates actively pursuing licensing at any given time will exceed the number of applicants in a reporting year.

h) Classes of certificate/license

Indicate and provide a description of the classes of certificate/license offered by your organization.

You must specify and describe at least one class of certificate/license (on line a) in order for this step to be complete.

# Certification Description
a) P1 A licensee who holds a P1 Licence is entitled to:

1. Give a party advice on his, her or its legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or the subject matter of a proceeding.

2. Represent a party before,

i. in the case of a proceeding in the Small Claims Court, before the Small Claims Court,

ii. in the case of a proceeding under the Provincial Offences Act, before the Ontario Court of Justice,

iii in the case of a proceeding under the Criminal Code, before a summary conviction court,

iv. in the case of a proceeding before a tribunal established under an Act of the Legislature of Ontario or under an Act of Parliament, before the tribunal, and

v. in the case of a proceeding before a person dealing with a claim or a matter related to a claim, before the person.

3. Anything mentioned in subsection 1 (7) of the Act, provided the activity is required by the rules of procedure governing a proceeding.

4. Select, draft, complete or revise, or assist in the selection, drafting, completion or revision of, a document for use in a proceeding.

5. Negotiate a party’s legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or the subject matter of a proceeding.

6. Select, draft, complete or revise, or assist in the selection, drafting, completion or revision of, a document that affects a party’s legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or the subject matter of a proceeding.

 

Additional comments:

i) Reviews and appeals processed

State the number of reviews and appeals your organization processed in the reporting year (use only whole numbers; do not enter commas or decimals).

Jurisdiction where applicants were initially trained in the profession (before they were granted use of the protected title or professional designation in Ontario)

from January 1st to December 31st of the reporting year  Ontario Other Canadian Provinces USA Other International Unknown Total
Applications that were subject to an internal review or that were referred to a statutory committee of your governing council, such as a Registration Committee 247 0 0 0 0 247
Applicants who initiated an appeal of a registration decision 0 0 0 0 0 0
Appeals heard 0 0 0 0 0 0
Registration decisions changed following an appeal 0 0 0 0 0 0

Additional comments:

j) Paid Staff

In the table below, enter the number of paid staff employed by your organization in the categories shown, on December 31 of the reporting year.

When providing information for each of the categories in this section, you may want to use decimals if you count your staff using half units. For example, one full-time employee and one part-time employee might be equivalent to 1.5 employees.

You can enter decimals to the tenths position only. For example, you can enter 1.5 or 7.5 but not 1.55 or 7.52.

Category Staff
Total staff employed by the regulatory body                 576
Staff involved in appeals process 166
Staff involved in registration process 36

Additional comments:

The number of staff indicated in the Appeals Process area above refers the department that handles the Good Character Review procedures, which are a pre-requisite to licensure.

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If you have specific questions about the Licensing Process, you may contact:

Licensing and Accreditation - Professional Development and Competence Department
The Law Society of Upper Canada
130 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N6
Email: licensingprocess@lsuc.on.ca
Telephone: 416-947-3315 Toll Free: 1-800-668-7380, extension 3315