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Legal aid

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Definition: Publicly-funded programs that provide legal counselling and/or representation for people who cannot afford to pay for them.

Legal Aid Alberta provides quality, effective legal advice and representation that enables eligible Albertans to resolve their legal issues; Eligibility guidelines are on its web site. It is an independent, publicly funded, not-for-profit organization that provides a broad range of services in family law (including emergency protection orders) and child welfare, adult criminal law, youth criminal law, immigration and refugee services and some civil legal areas (adult guardianship / trusteeship and income supports and government benefits).

Related keywords: Legal aid, Legal services

In Edmonton and Calgary, young persons who are charged with criminal offences are referred by the Legal Aid Society of Alberta to the Youth Criminal Defence Office (YCDO). The YCDO operates under the supervision of a Senior Counsel who is hired by and reports to the Board of Directors of the Legal Aid Society. The YCDO also employs a number of lawyers in Calgary and Edmonton. Social workers, youth workers and administrative staff support the lawyers.

Related keywords: Legal aid, Legal services, Youth criminal justice