Judges, attorney general arm-wrestle over stingy legal aid

One lawyer will be paid higher than the normal amount in a legal aid case she's representing

By Graham F. Scott

On Thursday May 29th, 2008


penniesMr. Justice Colin McKinnon of the Ontario Superior Court essentially told the province to shove it this week when he ordered that a lawyer in a murder trial be paid more than the standard legal-aid fee she would normally receive. Catherine Huot will now be paid $150 per hour to defend Allen Tehrankari, instead of the standard $87 she would normally receive under the province’s legal aid regime.

The Globe and Mail has the full story. A spokesperson for the Attorney General’s office is quoted as saying that lawyers should be paid “at the same rate regardless of the source of funding — be it through Legal Aid Ontario or the Ministry.” Justice McKinnon and plenty of others apparently feel otherwise, leading the Globe to call the ruling a ‘mini-revolt.’ We think it sounds like a full-sized one.