ACE provides free legal services for low-income older adults 60 years of age and over in the Greater Toronto Area. ACE may also provide services to older adults outside the GTA if the case is of significance to the older adult community. ACE’s legal services include summary legal advice, brief legal services, referrals, and legal representation.
ACE may provide free legal representation to clients who meet case and financial eligibility guidelines, and whose legal problem is within our Areas of Legal Practice. As with any professional service, an offer of representation is always subject to our professional judgment and discretion as to the merits of the case and our capacity to provide service.
We do not practice in all areas of law and are not able to take on all cases. We do not:
- prepare wills or power of attorney documents,
- give advice on estate administration,
- real estate,
- criminal law,
- family law matters.
If ACE is unable to provide representation, we will do our best to provide legal advice, information, or referrals to other services including local community clinics. Although ACE provides a free service to low-income older adults, in some cases a client may be asked to contribute to out-of-pocket disbursements.
ACE’s Area of Legal Practice Include:
- Health care consent and advance care planning
- Consumer protection
- Elder abuse
- Home care
- Long-term care homes
- Pensions and income
- Retirement homes
While ACE primarily provides legal services to low-income seniors, we do not have the resources to provide legal services to all eligible low-income seniors. ACE will consider several factors in deciding whether it will provide legal services to you, including your income level, the importance of your case to legal issues affecting the seniors’ community, and the availability of a community legal clinic within your geographic area. Please note that you will not become a client of ACE unless ACE agrees to represent you.
ACE Lawyers & Staff Can:
- Provide you with information on your legal rights
- Assist you in dealing with government offices
- Represent you in court and before legal tribunals
- Consult with lawyers and organizations representing older clients with legal problems
- Deliver workshops and public legal education programs for seniors’ organizations, health and social services providers, and other groups interested in seniors’ issues
What Can ACE Do For You?
Examples of types of cases we handle:
- Denial of government pension benefits or services or problems with other community services
- Poor care in a long-term care home or other seniors’ residence
- Inappropriate use of the power of attorney you have given to a relative or a friend
- Money or property taken by someone in a position of trust or authority without your consent or without fully informing you
- Refusal by retirement home to allow you to return from hospital because they say you need too much care
- Problems with hospital admission, detention, or discharge
- Pressure to move out of your home or retirement home or problems with care services
- Information about your rights after there has been a finding that you are incapable of making decisions, and information about how to challenge this finding
- Abuse, or threats of abuse, whether physical, emotional or financial
Law reform or legal reform is the process of examining existing laws, and advocating and implementing change in a legal system.
ACE staff prepare briefs, analyze proposed and proclaimed legislation, engage in research, and engage in other work necessary to advocate for changes in legislation or policy to improve the status of seniors in Ontario.
Browse ACE’s library of consultation submissions and reports below. Use the magnifying glass to search the folders by topic and key words.