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How can I get free or low cost legal help?

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Nov 3, 2021

Start with Ask JES, which is a free service available on this website. You can call, chat live or text your question using the information in the green column on the right. Each year, Ask JES provides free answers to thousands of legal questions. Ask JES provides legal help information and referrals which can help you take the next step to move forward with your legal issue.

In BC, many government departments and non-profit organizations provide free legal help information online. To start, it is important to understand what kind of legal issue you have.

Family Law: Issues related to separation, divorce, protection orders and adoption. See Family Law or HowToSeparate.ca.

Civil Law: Issues related to agreements between people and organizations. This includes issues related to employment, housing, lawsuits, and other legal disputes. For disputes less than $5000, see the Civil Resolution Tribunal. For claims between $5001 and $35,000 see SmallClaimsBC.ca. For claims over $35,000 see SupremeCourtBC.ca. For disputes related to employment, housing and other government regulated issues, see AdminLawBC.ca.

Criminal Law: Issues related to crime, as described in the Canadian Criminal Code. See Crime.

If you are searching for legal help online, be specific about your legal issue and be sure to include “BC” in your keyword search. A great online resource for all legal issues is Clicklaw BC.

If you have a legal problem, it is a good idea to talk to a lawyer to get legal advice. Even if you are going to handle your own case, a lawyer can help you at every step in the legal process. See the answer for “How can I get free legal advice in BC?” to learn about services provided by Legal Aid BC, Access Pro Bono and BC Advocates.