If you have money or property disputes, filing for small claims with the help of a small claims Toronto paralegal is the most reasonable and reliable decision. If the amount you are claiming is low ($500-$1500) or you are low on budget, consider representing yourself. However, if the amount is ($2000 – $35000), you should consider hiring a qualified Toronto paralegal.
You are probably asking why?
See our article on who is a paralegal for more explanation.
What is small claims?
People can settle their differences in any small claims court in Ontario where the amount doesn’t exceed $35,000 — You must go to the superior court if you are claiming more than this amount.
What can be claimed in small claims court?
Unpaid loans, unpaid rent, unpaid services, or unpaid goods, to mention a few, are claims often dealt with in small claims court. You may also claim damages for damage to property, breach of contract, or personal injuries. See our article on the step-by-step process for small claims in Ontario.
Who is a Toronto Paralegal?
A Toronto Paralegal is an individual who provide legal services to the public in Toronto, Ontario. They are licensed and regulated by the Law Society of Ontario and provide services related to Small Claims Court, Provincial Offences Act matters, Landlord and Tenant Board matters, and more.
They are an essential part of the legal system in Ontario and provide cost-effective legal services to those who may not be able to afford a lawyer.
Why Hire a Paralegal in Toronto who specializes in small claims?
A small claims court is a suitable avenue to settle minor disputes, which is why self-representation is allowed. But while self-representation is possible, legal matters must be dealt with seriously to ensure that you will receive compensation and retribution or avoid facing fines and penalties.
Getting legal representation or advice from a Toronto paralegal who specializes in small claims can be an excellent decision for many reasons, as they can so they can provide valuable advice and guidance throughout the process.
They can also help manage and streamline the paperwork involved in filing a claim and representing you in court if needed.
Reasons to hire a paralegal in Toronto for your small claims matter
Below are some of the top reasons to hire a paralegal for your small claims case:
— Paralegals have legal acumen
If you have no idea how to go about your case in a small claims court, hiring a professional who can do it for you would work in your best interest. When you work with a qualified paralegal, you can be confident that your case will be handled skillfully and professionally without any issues.
— Paralegal services are budget-friendly
Small claims courts handle low compensation value cases up to $35,000 or less. Hiring a lawyer for such cases can blow your budget because their rates might even be more expensive than the amount you are claiming.
On the other hand, a small claims Toronto paralegal can provide the same services but at a much lower rate. Depending on the case’s complexity, a lawyer may be the right choice. See our article on Paralegal vs Lawyer: who do you hire?
— Paralegals help with gathering evidence
Self-representing plaintiffs or defendants may need help gathering sufficient evidence, i.e., calling witnesses, filing and serving subpoenas, and requesting disclosure, which can be crucial to winning their case.
However, a small claims Toronto paralegal has the essential legal training and experience for effective collection, submission, and documentation of evidence. These paralegals will also oversee the collection of supporting evidence to ensure that the evidence you present to the presiding judge will be admissible.
— Paralegals can put your mind at ease
Most people will get cold feet from the mere thought of representing themselves in court, especially those who suffer severe nervousness speaking publicly. Hence, it is best to hire a small claims Toronto, as awkward pauses or a complete lack of composure may jeopardize your chances of winning your case.
Paralegals also have the vital training to take on your protection with full competence. They will devise a strategy tailored to the facts of your case that will relieve you of the stress of having to defend yourself so you can relax and follow the proceedings instead.
— Toronto paralegals can negotiate on your behalf
Additionally, a paralegal may be able to negotiate a settlement during a settlement conference on your behalf, saving you both time and money.
— A paralegal is familiar with the rules of small claims
When you hire a paralegal, you can receive professional advice on how and when to file documents and motions because they are conversant with the small claims rules and procedures.
Furthermore, your Paralegal will word your legal argument with legal terminologies to ensure the deputy judge decides in your favour or ensure that you receive the best outcome possible.
How Much are Small Claims Paralegal Fees in Toronto?
Remember that every case is different, and fees vary from Paralegal to Paralegal. If you hire a Paralegal from the filing of Plaintiff Claim phase to the enforcement phase, you may be looking to spend approximately $2,500 with additional disbursements. Again, this is subjective to the case, the amount claimed and the Paralegal.
As expected, paralegal fees will be lower if the case settles at the settlement conference and doesn’t go to trial — since they will spend less time on the case.
There is also a possibility of finding Paralegals who charge on a contingency (10% to 40% of the amount you get) or hourly ($100 – $700) basis. Remember that the Law Society doesn’t regulate the fees paralegals charge clients. Essentially, the marketplace largely determines the fees charged by paralegals.
A paralegal may even provide free legal service (Pro Bono) if they want to.
With that said, discuss the specifics of your case with the Paralegal so you can reach a fair fee agreement.