Court Assistance Program (Queen's Bench Amicus) - Edmonton
The goal of the Court Assistance Program (Queen's Bench Amicus Program) is to improve access to justice for self-represented litigants appearing in Queen' Bench Justice and Masters Chambers. This program brings volunteer lawyers into Chambers, where they act as 'amicus curiae' and help the court understand the issues related and the positions taken by unrepresented litigants. The program offers opportunity for courtroom advocacy in a positive environment, which can give great skills-building experience for lawyers and students, and the program is beneficial for overall professional development, mentoring, networking, building collegiality, and enhancing the public image of the legal profession.
In this way, a volunteer is able to serve multiple roles – to assist the individual in understanding court processes and procedures, to assist the court in understanding the issues raised and positions taken by the self-represented litigant, and, ultimately, to make the court less mysterious to members of the public and more efficient for members of the legal community. Clients are assisted on matters such as landlord and tenant issues, foreclosures, civil restraining orders, and general civil litigation issues.
The Court Assistance Program (Queen's Bench Amicus Program) was launched at the Edmonton Law Courts Building in March 2015. Assistance in Court is provided Wednesday 9:00 am to 12:30 pm.
Thank you to the following firms and organizations that participate in this project:
• Bishop & McKenzie
• Miller Thomson
• MacPherson Leslie & Tyerman
• Student Legal Services
• Pro Bono Students Canada