The Compensation Fund helps clients who have lost money because of the dishonesty of a lawyer or paralegal. It is paid for exclusively by the lawyers and paralegals of Ontario, out of their own pockets. Over the years it has paid out millions of dollars to help clients.
If you've lost money due to a lawyer or paralegal's dishonesty, the fund can reimburse you for all or part of your loss. Typically, the fund will pay for losses involving money from estates, from trust funds held for real estate closings and from settlements in legal actions.
The fund doesn't reimburse in cases dealing with negligence. For information on how to deal with those, see Complaining about a lawyer or paralegal.
Making a Compensation Fund claim
Contact us to get started. We'll ask you to send a letter explaining the loss. The letter should be sent within six-months from the time you first find out about the loss. Once we receive your letter, we'll send you a package with all the details you need to make a claim.
In most cases a staff lawyer assigned to the case will make a recommendation to the Compensation Fund's review committee, which makes a final decision. In certain cases a referee will hear your claim. The referee will then prepare a written report for the review committee.
For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions about the Compensation Fund.