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Call to the Bar

About the Call to the Bar

To be called to the Bar of Ontario, candidates must complete and meet all the requirements established by the Law Society as necessary to becoming a lawyer in this province.

Generally, a call to the bar follows the successful completion of the Licensing Process. Candidates who have successfully completed and met all administrative and program requirements for the Licensing Process, in accordance with By-Law 4 of the Law Society, are eligible to be called to the Bar of Ontario. Candidates must successfully complete the Barrister Licensing Examination and the Solicitor Licensing Examination, fulfill the Experiential Training Component (e.g. Articling or the LPP), file all documents and fees required and be of good character to be called. For some candidates, however, including lawyers transferring from within Canada, and Ontario law deans and professors, completion of some mandatory requirements of the Licensing Process may not be required. These candidates should contact the Law Society for more information.

In the past, in-person call ceremonies have typically been held in June in Toronto, Ottawa and London. The Law Society has also hosted in-person ceremonies in January and September in Toronto only.  In 2020 the Law Society implemented a more frequent process of licensing lawyer candidates called the administrative call process in order to license candidates expeditiously and without requiring their attendance in person.

As candidates become eligible for call, Licensing and Accreditation will contact them through their online account to advise them of next steps to complete in order to be  called.

  • Who is eligible for call to the bar?
    Candidates who have completed the Licensing Process, mobility candidates (licensed in other Canadian jurisdictions), and law deans/professors (from approved Ontario law schools) who successfully complete all requirements of the Law Society, are eligible for call to the bar.
    • Licensing Process Candidates
      To be eligible for call to the bar all candidates must:
      • have successfully completed all components of the Licensing Process as required;
      • have paid all Law Society fees, including the applicable call to the bar fee;
      • have filed the required documents;
      • be of good character, as required by section 27(2) of the Law Society Act - candidates have a continuing obligation to keep the responses to the questions set out in the Good Character Section of their Application current, complete and correct prior to the date of call; and
      • have submitted all the required call to the bar related documents.
     
    • Mobility Candidates
      Mobility candidates are eligible for call to the bar where they have met the requirements for admission as set out in By-Law 4, Section 9(2)(a)(i)(ii)(iii) respectively and have:
      • submitted all documents and fees related to making application for admission to the Law Society of Ontario;
      • submitted all call to the bar related documents.
  • Call to the bar fee

    All candidates (except Mobility Candidates) are required to pay the applicable call to the bar fee as prescribed in the Fees Schedule by the required deadline (under "Fees and Forms').

  • Documents to be filed

    To be eligible for call, the Law Society requires that the following documents be executed correctly and present in the candidate's file. Candidates will be notified when and how to submit the required documents for call. (Mobility candidates may not be required to submit all these documents. Please contact the Licensing and Accreditation Department for further information):

    • an Application for the Licensing Process duly signed and certified  by a guarantor or referee ;
    • certified proof of legal name;
    • a final official law transcript or NCA certificate (issued directly from the institution to the Licensing and Accreditation Department) that confers the LL.B./J.D./NCA;
    • two passport photos;
    • certified proof of legal name change (if applicable);
    • all articling documents including:  
      • Articles of Clerkship
      • Certificate of Service Under Articles
    • All candidates must complete the “Affidavit for taking the Oath” and a "Petition for Call to the Bar and Certificate of Fitness Form". The documents provided to eligible candidates must be fully completed, signed, commissioned and witnessed.
    • Law Deans/Professors must file a "Petition for Call to the Bar and Certificate of Fitness Form (Admission Under By-Law 4 made under the Law Society Act - Without Examination)". 

     

  • Affidavit for taking the Oath, Petition for the Call to the Bar and Certificate of Fitness Form
    These documents will be provided to eligible candidates participating in an in-person ceremony electronically through their online account and must complete and submit the documents in the prescribed form by the applicable deadline indicated.
  • Deferral

    Candidates who wish to defer their call to the bar must send a letter of request to the Licensing and Accreditation Department through their online account indicating the date on which they request to be called.

    Licensing Process candidates are advised that they must be called to the bar within three years of submitting their application for licensing and successfully completing all requirements for call. Any deferment of a call beyond the three years may require the candidate to complete such further experience and studies as may be required by the Director, Professional Development and Competence at the Law Society of Ontario.

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