Legal Aid Brief newsletter

#96 — July 2018

Family Tariff changes

The Legal Services Society (LSS) is introducing a new tariff item to the Family Tariff effective July 19, 2018.

The new tariff item provides up to 10 hours for preparation for issues related to matrimonial real property on reserve. For more details, see our summary of the changes.

The updated Family chapter of the LSS Tariffs will be available on July 19, 2018, on the LSS website at legalaid.bc.ca (under Lawyers — LSS Tariffs) and in LSS Online under Resources.

Transition rules for contracts

The new tariff item will be added to all new Family contracts and to existing Family contracts that have not yet reached their service stop date. You can bill this item for services provided on or after July 19, 2018.

Background

Matrimonial real property on reserve is a complicated area of law for which LSS does not currently provide legal representation. Spouses living on reserve may lack rights and protections regarding matrimonial property when their relationships break down. This can result in devastating consequences, particularly for women and children. For example, due to the severe lack of housing on reserve, having possession of on-reserve property can often determine a woman’s ability to remain within the community and, in some cases, her ability to keep her children.

Given LSS’s goal of improving access to justice for Indigenous people and the potential consequences for families of such disputes, we decided to use some of our recent increase in funding to assist Indigenous and non-Indigenous clients who are eligible for family legal aid services and also have a family home or other real property on reserve.

As always, we welcome your feedback regarding the LSS Tariffs. If you have any comments, please email lawyersresources@lss.bc.ca.

 

Heidi Mason
Vice President, Legal Advice and Representation

July 19, 2018

 

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