The Law Foundation of Ontario was established in 1974 under the Law Society Act. The Foundation receives and uses the interest on lawyers’ and paralegals’ mixed trust accounts to support legal education, legal research, legal aid, and law libraries in Ontario. It does this through grantmaking to nonprofits and providing funds to Legal Aid Ontario. The Foundation also administers the Class Proceedings Fund, which provides cost assistance in class actions.
The Foundation is an inclusive employer. We respect equity, inclusion, diversity, and anti-racism. We are dedicated to creating a workplace reflective of the community we serve and welcome applications from diverse and equity-deserving groups. Accommodation, if required, will be provided throughout the hiring process in accordance with the Human Rights Code.
The Law Foundation of Ontario is the sole foundation in Ontario with the mandate of improving access to justice. A priority for the Foundation is to pay particular attention to groups who have experienced injustice or inequity – past or current – and those who have experienced exclusion or barriers in society.
This is a rare opportunity to become part of an impactful team focused on making a difference in improving access to justice in Ontario. As Associate Counsel, you will join a hybrid work environment and have a challenging and rewarding role supporting and coordinating all legal and administrative matters for the Class Proceedings Committee (CPC) and the nonprofit Class Proceedings Fund (CPF).
Under the guidance of the Director and CPC Counsel, you will:
- Respond to inquiries from the public and legal professionals who wish to make funding applications.
- Review and assess applications for funding, including conducting research and asking relevant questions of class counsel, as appropriate in preparing an assessment of:
- The pleadings of the applicant and whether the factual and legal basis for each cause of action is adequately plead
- Legal opinions submitted by class counsel
- Certification materials, mediation briefs, expert opinions, and other materials submitted in support of funding applications
- Applicable defences, both common law and statutory
- Applicable limitation periods
- Jurisdictional issues
- Whether the certification criteria in the Class Proceedings Act have been established
- Whether the case is in the public interest
- Attend at hearings and provide advice before the CPC as counsel to the Committee members.
- Oversee disbursement claims made by successful applicants.
- Monitor the progress of funded cases.
- Review and assess settlement materials in successful cases.
- Manage the litigation costs claims made against the CPF in unsuccessful cases.
- Ensure the integrity of the database and records to allow for analysis and research.
- Prepare legal opinions and a range of complex materials including annual reports, audit letters, briefing materials and presentations.
Successful candidates will demonstrate the following:
- An L.L.B. or J.D. in good standing with the Law Society of Ontario and a minimum of five (5) years of litigation experience in various practice areas including Crown liability, Charter infringement, Human rights, employment law, negligence, securities law, consumer protection etc.
- Sound legal knowledge and understanding of the Foundation’s and CPC’s legislative and compliance framework and relevant legislation (e.g. Class Proceedings Act, 1992)
- Solid understanding of the Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence.
- Class action experience is an asset but is not necessary.
- Familiarity with current trends and developments in the jurisprudence related to class proceedings is an asset but is not necessary.
- Critical thinking skills with a demonstrated ability to analyse, assess, and advise on a broad range of legal and policy issues related to the mandate of the CPC.
- Strong relationship management and excellent written and oral communication skills to support funded proceedings communications with class action counsel, review disbursement claims, and assess supplementary applications.
- Ability to manage a diverse and complex caseload, prepare legal opinions, and collaboratively engage with applicants and stakeholders, using sound judgment and exercising appropriate discretion.
- Demonstrated organizational, problem-solving, advisory, dispute resolution, and negotiation skills.
- Proven expertise in case management systems and procedures, practices and operations, including application intake, assessment, and processing principles.
- A team player with a high degree of integrity, who can also work autonomously and take appropriate action where required.
Please send your resume and cover letter by February 17, 2023 to The Law Foundation of Ontario at email@example.com. You may also reach out to Lisa Sherin at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions or require an accessibility accommodation.
We thank all external applicants for their interest, however, only those selected for further consideration will be contacted. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.