NSRLP in the Press

Introducing the National Database of Professionals Assisting SRLs!

Today the National Self-Represented Litigants Project is launching a project five months in the making – the National Database of Professionals Assisting SRLs. Every day self-represented litigants contact us looking for affordable legal assistance. As you are aware, studies show that full representation by a lawyer is unaffordable for not just the very poor, but for ordinary middle-income Canadians. This growing National Database contains the names of dozens of lawyers (as well as paralegals, and other professionals offering therapeutic support and [...]

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PBSC Coaching Projects take off

Law students at Windsor, the University of Toronto and Osgoode Hall are getting some press these days for helping self-represented litigants (SRLs) in family court through two innovative “coaching” projects http://www.probonostudents.ca/news-announcements/pbsc-coaching-projects-take-off  

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Self-Represented Litigants’ Response to “the Rights and Responsibilities of Self-Represented Litigants”

SLAW – In my 28 August 2015 post, “The Rights and Responsibilities of Self-represented Litigants,” I reproduced a document intended to sketch out, like the name suggests, the reasonable expectations that litigants without counsel should have as they make their way through the legal system, and their concurrent obligation to attempt to acquire a reasonable understanding of legal processes. This caught the eye of Julie Macfarlane, professor at the University of Windsor and director of the National Self-Represented Litigants Project, who arranged for the document to be [...]

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Julie interviewed by Australian Radio

Julie was interviewed last week in Hobart, Tasmania, by national Australian public radio (ABC) radio host Ryk Goddard. They has a lively interchange. Unfortunately, the original link has expired but we are working on obtaining a copy of the interview for posting here.

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CBC Radio Windsor Morning – Make affordable legal representation an election issue, prof says

Julie Macfarlane of the University of Windsor says that more than half the people heading into a family court in Canada today are doing so without a lawyer. In most cases, that’s because these individuals cannot afford those services…. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/windsor/make-affordable-legal-representation-an-election-issue-prof-says-1.3182770

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Julie addresses the Continuing Legal Education Society of British Columbia

Made especially for the annual retreat of the Continuing Legal Education Society of BC, Julie connects the results of the National SRL Study (2013) to the questions raised for lawyer’s education, both substantively and in terms of new skills and attitudes. The video was used to stimulate and focus discussion at the retreat about a future strategy that takes the growth of self-representation fully into account in planning and delivering CLE. Like all other material produced by the NSRLP, this [...]

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De-Stressing Litigation: Working out the Kinks

A collaborative NSRLP/ Canadian Mental Health Association (Windsor)/ Ontario Court of Justice (Windsor)/ Canadian College (Windsor) project highlighted the stress and anxiety caused by self-representation. On Friday, January 9th a room in the Windsor courthouse was converted into a temporary massage therapy space for the afternoon. A group of Registered Massage Therapy students from Canadian College (including former NSRLP volunteer Cynthia Eagan) offered free mini-massages to SRLs in family court. Others in the courthouse, including court staff and lawyers, also took [...]

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Using Public Resources to Assist SRLs to Settle

NSRLP was excited to be part of the public launch of Legal Aid Ontario’s two new family initiatives announced last week ((http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2014/07/03/legal_aid_hopes_to_discourage_feuding_couples_from_acting_as_own_lawyers.html) These two new programs will provide legal assistance to family litigants who are otherwise managing the system without counsel, to make a separation agreement at the outset of their case, or to consult before, during and after mediation. While many SRLs in family court will not qualify for this new assistance, a somewhat wider group will be able to [...]

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Julie addresses BC Benchers on SRLs

In this professional video Julie presents the highlights of the National Study (2013) and talks about the implications of her findings for the Bar, and what lawyers can respond to the SRL phenomenon. This 20 minute presentation also includes excerpts from interviews with two SRLs about their experiences.    

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Day 6 with Brent Brambury

Two-thirds of cases in family court now include at least one person who’s defending themselves without the help of a lawyer. The stats climb to 70 per cent in civil court. Few do so by choice: they simply can’t afford counsel. They’re forced to navigate complicated legal issues and protocol alone, with little to no support from the judiciary. They often face stigma, or are branded as troublemakers. University of Windsor law professor Julie Macfarlane interviewed over 250 self-represented litigants. [...]

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Law Times

Speaker’s Corner: Bar must examine its role in adapting to self-represented litigants: http://www.lawtimesnews.com/201206252617/commentary/speakers-corner-bar-must-examine-its-role-in-adapting-to-self-represented-litigants

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Global Post

List of recommendations of a new study on self-represented litigants: http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/the-canadian-press/130507/list-recommendations-new-study-self-represented-litigants

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Court House Libraries BC

University of Windsor Research Finds Self-Represented Litigants Going Through “Real Trauma”: http://www.courthouselibrary.ca/training/NewsByCategory/NewsDetails.aspx?Id=fd5cd43d-f5e9-46e4-9874-8d4cfe0a4f0e

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The Guardian of Charlottetown

Acting as your own lawyer a daunting, frustrating challenge, study finds: http://www.theguardian.pe.ca/Canada—World/Society/2013-05-07/article-3241680/Acting-as-your-own-lawyer-a-daunting%2C-frustrating-challenge%2C-study-finds/1

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Dawson Creek Daily News

List of recommendations of a new study on self-represented litigants: http://www.dawsoncreekdailynews.ca/article/GB/20130507/CP02/305079810/-1/dawsoncreek0103/list-of-recommendations-of-a-new-study-on-self-represented-litigants&template=cpart

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Law Times

Public input integral for real equal justice: http://www.lawtimesnews.com/201312273677/headline-news/public-input-integral-for-real-equal-justice

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Day 6: Your Day in Court Without a Lawyer

Two-thirds of cases in family court now include at least one person who’s defending themselves without the help of a lawyer. The stats climb to 70 per cent in civil court. Few do so by choice: they simply can’t afford counsel. They’re forced to navigate complicated legal issues and protocol alone, with little to no support from the judiciary. They often face stigma, or are branded as troublemakers. University of Windsor law professor Julie Macfarlane interviewed over 250 self-represented litigants. [...]

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