Getting legal help

Settlement conferences

Legal Aid Ontario's settlement conferences are private meetings between you and the other person, supported by both your lawyers. The objective of these meetings is to work toward a resolution. An increasing number of jurisdictions provide settlement conferences for child protection matters.

Legal Aid Ontario settlement conferences are not the same as the ones that are part of the family court process, where the conferences are conducted by a judge and require a court appearance.

Unlike mediation sessions, you and the other person must already have legal aid certificates to use the settlement conference service. You will need to ask your lawyers to schedule the appointment. Each session may last up to three hours. When they end:

  • if you have entered into an agreement, your lawyer may file the minutes of settlement with the court

  • if you have not reached an agreement, your lawyer may request an additional settlement conference or proceed with litigation.