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Office of the Fairness Commissioner

 

The answers seen below were submitted to the OFC by the regulated professions. 

This Fair Registration Practices Report was produced as required by:

  • the Fair Access to Regulated Professions and Compulsory Trades Act, 2006 (FARPACTA), s. 20 and 23(1), for regulated professions named in Schedule 1 of FARPACTA

  • the Health Professions Procedural Code set out in Schedule 2 of the Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA), s. 22.7(1) and 22.9(1), for health colleges.

Index

  1. Qualitative Information 

  2. Quantitative Information 

1. Qualitative Information

a) Requirements for registration, including acceptable alternatives

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

b) Assessment of qualifications

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

c) Provision of timely decisions, responses, and reasons

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

In 2019, the Law Society continued to evolve the manner in which it supports its communications with candidates in an effort to ensure greater transparency within the licensing process. As part of its application launch for the 2020-2021 licensing cycle, the Law Society has begun to post expected timelines for Law Society responses on several of its processes and for replies to candidate requests for information. For example, we have published information regarding response times on requests relating to candidate extensions, requests for reinstatement, requests to be considered for additional licensing examination writes, application processing times, registration and late registration requests.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

Publishing information pertaining to the Law Society’s response times for the handling of matters enables the candidate to plan more effectively when interacting with the Law Society, and reduces the number of follow up contacts that the candidate may need to have with our licensing department. Making this information available in the registration process helps inform candidates of the expectations that the Law Society sets for itself, and for the candidate. Candidates now have more information at their disposal to navigate the Law Society’s licensing process, which contributes to better candidate planning and decision making. This communication serves to enhance transparency in the licensing process for the candidate.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

The posting of response deadlines to candidates is viewed as a candidate communication quality assurance measure. In addition to ensuring that candidates receive information that directly pertains to their interaction with the Law Society, the changes allow staff to triage candidate interactions in a more timely fashion, improving efficiency and transparency.

d) Fees

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

e) Timelines

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

As a feature of the Law Society’s 2020-2021 application launch, which was implemented on October 1, 2019, candidates who enter the licensing process and who reasonably believe that they will require an accommodation to write the licensing examinations, are now requested to submit their application for accommodation and any supporting documentation at the time the licensing application is due. In previous years, the Law Society required new candidates to the licensing process to submit requests for accommodations 30 business days prior to the date of a licensing examination. As a result of the short period of time between the deadline and the examination, the Law Society and the candidate had only a very limited period of time to consider requests, and work with each other to implement an approved accommodations in the time available.

In an effort to manage the pressures that result from the need to implement approved accommodation requests while providing continuing support to candidates seeking accommodations in the period of time immediately before a licensing examination, the Examination Administration team has set up a dedicated email for candidates who apply for registration and accommodations beyond the prescribed deadline. Candidates who are late in submitting the required documentation now send their request to this email address, which is monitored by Counsel, Licensing and Accreditation. Late licensing examination registrants continue to be received and considered in accordance with human rights principles as outlined under the Human Rights Code, R.S.O. 1990, c. H. 19.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

Since the initial filing deadline for candidates seeking accommodations for the licensing examination now occurs earlier in the process, applicants can be provided with confirmation of an approved accommodation in a more timely fashion. Also, in cases where the documentation supporting a request is insufficient, both the candidate and the Law Society now have more time to interact with each other on accommodation requests in the period leading up to an examination administration. This ensures that candidates are given sufficient time to obtain and provide the necessary information to support their accommodation requests.

The late registration process has also had a positive impact for candidates in that it affords those candidates who were not able to meet the examination registration deadline with a clear set of guidelines and structure for administering their late accommodation requests. Even in cases where late registration has been denied, candidates have expressed their appreciation in having the response communicated to them clearly and quickly, and with regard to their unique circumstances.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

The implementation of the new accommodations process has allowed the Examination Administration team to process accommodations earlier while administering examination delivery operations in a more efficient fashion. The quality of information that is received to support accommodation decisions has also improved. Seeking accommodation information from candidates earlier permits the Law Society to better forecast the resource requirements that might be necessary to implement the accommodations it approves. This is particularly important considering that in many instances the Law Society must obtain these resources, such as venue space, in a competitive commercial market. Finally, the implementation of the late registration process has resulted in a better redistribution of internal workload immediately before an examination is delivered.

f) Policies, procedures and/or processes, including by-laws

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

Changes to the Policy and Procedures for Accommodations for Candidates in the Paralegal Licensing Processes (Accommodation Policy) were made to reflect the new timelines and the late registration process. 

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

The changes to Accommodation Policy to include information on timelines and the late registration process provides candidates with greater transparency in the licensing process.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

The changes to the Accommodation Policy translates to fewer staff interactions with candidates seeking information on timelines and processes for late registration.

g) Resources for applicants

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

In 2019, the Licensing Process unit created a new online document that is available to all candidates that outlines many key points for obtaining licensing examination study materials from the Law Society. The document outlines how candidates may obtain these materials electronically, in person or by placing a shipping order. This information includes trouble shooting information, and a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) segment. Information, including information available on the Law Society’s website for candidates seeking accommodations on licensing examination(s) were also revised and improved in 2019.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

These new documents and webpage updates contribute to candidate awareness and understanding of the Law Society’s licensing processes.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

These new documents and webpage updates contribute to enhancing the suite of available resources that the Law Society may utilize to communicate is licensing processes.  

h) Review or appeal processes

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

i) Access to applicant records

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

j) Training and resources for registration staff, Council, and committee members

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

Law Society staff attended a number of relevant conferences, training events and regulatory industry events, including but not limited to Ontario Regulators for Access Consortium (ORAC) Managing Cultural Differences Workshops, ORAC sessions on top legal issues for regulators and testing accommodations, Council on Licensure, Enforcement and Regulation (CLEAR) Annual and Regional conferences, Canadian Network for Agencies for Regulation (CNAR) Annual conference, National Association of Law Placement (NALP) meetings, Association of Test Publishers (ATP) Innovations in Testing  Conference, Schulich School of Business Certificate in Management Skills for Supervisors, and National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE), and the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) certificate in adult education and instructional design. Staff also participated in internal training focussed on best practices in accommodations, mental health, and dealing with difficult individuals. Additionally, staff participated in a teaching led by an Indigenous elder, where they learned more about Indigenous medicines and cultural traditions. Finally, staff members continued to attend classes in American Sign Language and French.

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

This training and development help staff to remain apprised of best practices in registration, licensure, accommodation, cultural competence and demographic changes so that they may apply these principles to their management of the candidate during the licensing process.

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

Principles derived from this training are applied to the analysis, design, development, evaluation and validation of licensing processes that support candidate entry level competence and the Law Society’s regulatory function. Training and development that is focussed in areas, such as adult education and instructional systems design helps support the continuation of best practices in the delivery of Law Society programming.

k) Mutual recognition agreements

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

l) Other (include as many items as applicable)

i. Describe any improvements / changes implemented in the last year.

No changes this year

ii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on applicants.

No changes this year

iii. Describe the impact of the improvements / changes on your organization.

No changes this year

m) Describe any registration-related improvements/changes to your enabling legislation and/or regulations in the last year

No changes this year

 


2. Quantitative Information

a) Languages

Indicate the languages in which application information materials were available in the reporting year.

Language

Yes/No

English

Yes

French

Yes

Other (please specify)

 

Additional comments:

b) Gender of applicants 

Indicate the number of applicants in each category as applicable.

Gender

Number of Applicants

Male

381

Female

1067

None of the above

0

Additional comments:

c) Gender of members 

Indicate the number of members in each category as applicable. Select the option that best corresponds to the terminology used by your organization.

Gender

Number of Members

Male

 4195

Female

7992

None of the above

0

Additional comments: 

d) Jurisdiction where applicants obtained their initial education 

Indicate the number of applicants by the jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario

Other Canadian Provinces

USA

Other International

Unknown

Total

1448

0

0

n/a 0
Total 0

0

1448

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

e) Jurisdiction where applicants who became registered members obtained their initial education 

Indicate the number of applicants who became registered members in the reporting year by the jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario

Other Canadian Provinces

USA

Other International

Unknown

Total

1057

0

0

n/a 0
Total 0

0

1057

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

f) Jurisdiction where members were initially trained 

Indicate the total number of registered members by jurisdiction where they obtained their initial education1 in the profession or trade.

Ontario

Other Canadian Provinces

USA

Other International

Unknown

Total

12,187

 

0

n/a 0
Total 0

0

12,187

1 Recognizing that applicants may receive their education in multiple jurisdictions, for the purpose of this question, include only the jurisdiction in which an entry-level degree, diploma or other certification required to practice the profession or trade was obtained.

Additional comments:

g) Applications processed

Indicate the number of applications your organization processed in the reporting year:

Jurisdiction where applicants were initially trained in the profession (before they were granted use of the protected title or professional designation in Ontario)

from January 1st to December 31st of the reporting year 

Ontario

Other Canadian Provinces

USA

Other International

Unknown

Total

New applications received

1448

0

0

0

0

1448

Applicants actively pursuing licensing (applicants who had some contact with your organization in the reporting year)

1388

0

0

0

0

1388

Inactive applicants (applicants who had no contact with your organization in the reporting year)

0

0

0

0

0

0

Applicants who met all requirements and were authorized to become members but did not become members

0

0

0

0

0

0

Applicants who became FULLY registered members

1057

0

0

0

0

1057

Applicants who were authorized to receive an alternative class of licence3 but were not issued a licence

0

0

0

0

0

0

Applicants who were issued an alternative class of licence3

0

0

0

0

0

0

1 An alternative class of licence enables its holder to practice with limitations, but additional requirements must be met in order for the member to be fully licensed.

Additional comments:

Pursuant to By-Law 4, candidates are entitled to 3 years to complete the licensing process requirements. Therefore, the number of candidates actively pursuing licensing at any given time will exceed the number of applicants in a reporting year.

h) Classes of certificate/license

Indicate and provide a description of the classes of certificate/license offered by your organization.

You must specify and describe at least one class of certificate/license (on line a) in order for this step to be complete.

#

Certification

Description

a)

P1

A licensee who holds a P1 Licence is entitled to:

 

1. Give a party advice on his, her or its legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or the subject matter of a proceeding.

 

2. Represent a party before,

    i. in the case of a proceeding in the Small Claims Court, before the Small Claims Court,

    ii. in the case of a proceeding under the Provincial Offences Act, before the Ontario Court of Justice,

    iii in the case of a proceeding under the Criminal Code, before a summary conviction court,

    iv. in the case of a proceeding before a tribunal established under an Act of the Legislature of Ontario or under an Act of Parliament, before the tribunal, and

    v. in the case of a proceeding before a person dealing with a claim or a matter related to a claim, before the person.

 

3. Anything mentioned in subsection 1 (7) of the Act, provided the activity is required by the rules of procedure governing a proceeding.

 

4. Select, draft, complete or revise, or assist in the selection, drafting, completion or revision of, a document for use in a proceeding.

 

5. Negotiate a party’s legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or the subject matter of a proceeding.

 

6. Select, draft, complete or revise, or assist in the selection, drafting, completion or revision of, a document that affects a party’s legal interests, rights or responsibilities with respect to a proceeding or    

    the subject matter of a proceeding.

 

Additional comments:

i) Reviews and appeals processed

State the number of reviews and appeals your organization processed in the reporting year (use only whole numbers; do not enter commas or decimals).

Jurisdiction where applicants were initially trained in the profession (before they were granted use of the protected title or professional designation in Ontario)

from January 1st to December 31st of the reporting year 

Ontario

Other Canadian Provinces

USA

Other International

Unknown

Total

Applications that were subject to an internal review or that were referred to a statutory committee of your governing council, such as a Registration Committee

229

0

0

0

0

229

Applicants who initiated an appeal of a registration decision

0

0

0

0

0

0

Appeals heard

0

0

0

0

0

0

Registration decisions changed following an appeal

0

0

0

0

0

0

Additional comments:

j) Paid Staff

In the table below, enter the number of paid staff employed by your organization in the categories shown, on December 31 of the reporting year.

When providing information for each of the categories in this section, you may want to use decimals if you count your staff using half units. For example, one full-time employee and one part-time employee might be equivalent to 1.5 employees.

You can enter decimals to the tenths position only. For example, you can enter 1.5 or 7.5 but not 1.55 or 7.52.

Category

Staff

Total staff employed by the regulatory body                

622.2

Staff involved in appeals process

183.1

Staff involved in registration process

38.7

Additional comments:

The number of staff indicated in the Appeals Process area above refers to the department that handles the Good Character Review procedures, which are a pre-requisite to licensure.

 


If you have specific questions about the Licensing Process, you may contact:

Licensing and Accreditation - Professional Development and Competence Department
Law Society of Ontario
130 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N6
Email: licensingprocess@lso.ca
Telephone: 416-947-3315 Toll Free: 1-800-668-7380, extension 3315

Terms or Concepts Explained