Hot Bytes

The new OLA Portal is going strong

Posted on: Friday, February 22 /2008

Based on the early results, the Online Lawyer Acknowledgement portal (OLA) -- one of LAO's latest web service initiatives for lawyers -- is clearly popular with lawyers using the new enhancement.

OLA acknowledged 3,026 certificates online and 588 individual lawyers used the system portal between the launch in December 2007 and the middle of February.

The new upgrade allows lawyers to submit certificate acknowledgements electronically online through the lawyers' portal.

Previously, lawyers were required to fax or mail a certificate acknowledgement form to their local area office. The form was then manually entered into the system and a hard copy was filed on site.

Area offices were required to confirm that the lawyer acknowledging a certificate was empanelled by Legal Aid Ontario to accept the kind of case - such as criminal or family law - their client was involved in.

The new process confirms from LAO's database that the lawyer submitting the acknowledgement is on the panel for which the certificate has been issued.

The new OLA service is tied into the Peoplesoft system, LAO's client management software platform. Lawyers can bill LAO electronically through a secure Internet connection.

PeopleSoft aligns all of LAO's client and lawyers' accounts, records and bookkeeping on one centralized platform.

With over 3,000 legal aid certificates acknowledged online in just a few months through LAO's web based Online Lawyer Acknowledgement portal, there seems no question it's popular.