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Contingency Fees

Effective July 1, 2021, a new contingency fee regime comes into force. It includes changes to the Solicitors Act and the introduction of a new regulation, O. Reg. 563/20, Contingency Fee Agreements. As a result of these amendments
  • both lawyers and paralegals can accept a contingency fee in certain matters
  • costs can now be included when calculating a contingency fee
  • subject to limited exceptions, lawyers and paralegals must use the new Standard Form Contingency Fee Agreement, and
  • where the standard form is not required, lawyers and paralegals must include certain provisions in their non-standard form contingency fee agreement.

The new regime also includes amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct, the Paralegal Rules of Conduct, and the Paralegal Professional Conduct Guidelines. These amendments seek to improve transparency and fairness for clients by requiring that lawyers and paralegals

  • disclose the maximum contingency fee percentage charged
  • provide clients with the Law Society’s Contingency fees: What you need to know consumer guide before they enter into a contingency fee agreement, and
  • provide certain fee-related reporting to clients on completion of the contingency fee agreement. 

The above amendments and transparency measures only apply to contingency fee arrangements entered into on or after July 1, 2021.  

Supports and Resources

For questions relating to a lawyer or paralegal’s obligations regarding contingency fees and contingency fee agreements, please contact the Law Society’s Practice Management Helpline.  

Lawyers and paralegal may also wish to consult and/or use the following:

FAQs and Checklists

Related Resources

Legislative Authorities and Law Society Rules

Convocation Materials

 

Last updated: May 28, 2021

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