Legal aid

To apply for legal aid in person or over the phone, see Do I qualify? and How to apply.

Serious family problems

You can get a lawyer to represent you in your family law case in the following circumstances:

  • In serious family situations, for example:
    • when you need an immediate court order to ensure you or your children's safety and security,
    • to resolve a serious denial of parenting time or contact with / access to your children,
    • when the other parent threatens to remove your children permanently from the province, or
    • when you have guardianship or custody of your children and the other parent has contact or access, but he or she has unlawfully held your children and not allowed you to carry out your guardianship or custody responsibilities.
  • In other situations, depending on available funding, your circumstances, and based on a merit test, including:
    • to resolve serious legal issues in high conflict cases;
    • when you've experienced court-related harassment (your ex-partner is using the legal system to harass you);
    • when you are unable to represent yourself due to emotional abuse, psychological trauma, or mental illness; or
    • when all other efforts to resolve the case have been exhausted and resolving the case will make a significant difference to you or your children.

The items above are not a complete list of all situations that may be covered. Coverage decisions are made on a discretionary (case-by-case) basis.

For more information or to apply for legal aid, call the LSS Call Centre

604-408-2172 or
1-866-577-2525 (no charge)

If you're refused legal representation, you may reapply at a later date if:

  • your situation changes, or
  • you have further information to include with your application.

If you've qualified for a legal aid lawyer but you’re not sure what your lawyer is authorized to do for you, the following information sheet helps explain the service: What Can I Expect If My Lawyer Is Given a Family Contract?

Family Law in British Columbia

Get legal information on divorce and separation, parenting, support, family violence, child protection, and other issues important to families.

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MyLaw BC

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