For lawyers & paralegals

Licensees and The Law Foundation of Ontario: what you need to know

Lawyers and paralegals have a special relationship with The Law Foundation of Ontario. We are connected through legal obligations and our shared mandates of improving access to justice.

Legal duty

Legal duty to report and direct mixed trust account

Lawyers and paralegals have a legal obligation to report mixed trust accounts. This helps ensure that The Law Foundation of Ontario receives the interest on these accounts, which it uses to advance access to justice.When opening a mixed trust account, lawyers and paralegals must direct their financial institution to pay the interest to The Law Foundation of Ontario.

Lawyers and paralegals must report on each mixed trust account held at any time during the licensee’s reporting year in their Lawyer Annual Report or the Paralegal Annual Report filing through the Law Society of Ontario Portal.

Established by statute in 1974, The Law Foundation of Ontario is the sole foundation in Ontario with the mandate of increasing access to justice. The Foundation’s main source of revenue is interest received from lawyers’ and paralegals’ mixed trust accounts. This revenue goes to The Law Foundation of Ontario to make grants that advance access to justice and to Legal Aid Ontario. The higher the interest rate a bank provides, the more dollars are available for the Foundation to make grants.

Learn more on our Report a mixed trust account webpage.

How the interest is used
Access to justice partners

Report a mixed trust account

Lawyers and paralegals must report annually on each mixed trust account. It is important to direct the financial institution to forward all interest earned from a mixed trust account to The Law Foundation of Ontario.

Read more

Direct a cy-près award

Many courts have approved the Foundation as a fitting and accountable recipient of cy-près awards. The Access to Justice Fund is a permanent fund available to receive such awards.

Read more

Class Proceedings Fund

The Class Proceedings Fund provides financial support to approved class action plaintiffs for legal disbursements and indemnifies plaintiffs for costs that may be awarded against them in funded proceedings.

Read more

What's new

Min Jin
Story

Accessible legal help for domestic violence survivors in rural and remote communities

September 3, 2019

The Law Foundation of Ontario Catalyst granting is helping Luke’s Place to expand its services, including the Virtual Legal Clinic.

Makayla
News

LAWS student reflections: seeing behind the scenes of grantmaking

September 17, 2019

We participate in LAWS’ Summer Job Program and this year we were joined by Makayla. Here are some of her reflections of her time working with us.

Pamela Cross
News

Pamela Cross receives 2019 Guthrie Award

September 11, 2019

The Law Foundation of Ontario is pleased to announce that the 2019 Guthrie Award recipient is women’s rights advocate, Pamela Cross.