- The information on the website is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. If you require legal information or legal advice specific to your circumstances, please contact us (link to contact us page). CELA does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of any information on the website, and anyone acting or refraining from acting based on it does so at his or her own risk.
- A lawyer-client relationship is only formed when CELA has agreed to act for you and we have confirmed the relationship in a retainer agreement.
- All communications prior to a lawyer-client relationship being formed will not be considered confidential.
- Unless you are an existing client or we advise you, please do not send us confidential information through the website, email, telephone, or fax. Communications through the website or otherwise may not be 100% secure.
- Links to external websites do not signify CELA’s endorsement of those sites. CELA makes no representation as to the security of those documents or websites, or the accuracy of the information contained in them.
The Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA) is a non-profit and independent community legal clinic that has been serving Ontarians since 1970. CELA receives its funding from Legal Aid Ontario (LAO). We provide free legal services and assistance to low income individuals and communities who live in Ontario.
CELA recognizes the importance of privacy and the sensitivity of personal information.
Your Privacy Rights
Personal information is any information that identifies you, or by which your identity could be deduced. CELA is responsible for the personal information we collect and hold under the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, and the Canadian Standards Association Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information. As lawyers and paralegals, we will meet our Law Society of Ontario obligations to protect personal information.
Why Does CELA Need Personal Information?
CELA’s funding agreement with LAO, as well as our Board of Director’s policies, require the collection of personal information from our clients, including to assess financial eligibility for our services. We are unable to provide legal services if we do not collect and use your personal information.
As lawyers and paralegals, we will also meet the standards in the Law Society of Ontario’s Rules of Professional Conduct, which requires the collection of personal information from clients to avoid conflicts of interest and for other purposes.
Under certain rare circumstances, CELA may be required to disclose your personal information, including if the disclosure is required by law.
What personal information do we collect?
The basic personal information that we collect is your legal name, address, contact information, source and amount of income, and date of birth. At our discretion, we may collect additional information.
Wherever possible we collect your personal information directly from you. We will try to obtain your consent to collect, use or disclose your personal information.
If CELA holds information about you and you can establish that it is not accurate, complete and up-to-date, CELA will take reasonable steps to correct it.
Is My Personal Information Secure?
CELA takes reasonable precautions to ensure that your personal information is kept safe from loss, unauthorized access, modification or disclosure. Among the steps taken to protect your information are:
- securing our office space and physical premises against unauthorized entry and theft;
- restricting file access to personal information;
- deploying technological safeguards like security software and firewalls to prevent hacking or unauthorized computer access;
- internal password and security policies.
Access to Your Personal Information
You may access any personal information we hold about you, unless there are valid reasons for withholding the information, which will be explained to you.
Requests for Access
If you have any questions, or wish to access your personal information, please speak to our Office Manager at 416-960-2284, ext. 7210. If you are not satisfied with our response, the Privacy Commissioner of Canada can be reached at 112 Kent Street, Ottawa Ontario, K1A 1H3 1-800-282-1376.