Services in Ontario - Renting a new place to live
Community legal clinics
During the COVID-19 situation, many community legal clinics are no longer meeting with people in person, but will provide services over the phone. Call ahead for more information.
Legal Aid Ontario funds community legal clinics across Ontario to give free legal services to people with low incomes. Lawyers, community legal workers, and law students can help people with some legal problems, like social assistance, housing, and workers’ rights.
To get help from a clinic:
- your legal issue must be one the clinic deals with
- you must live in the area the clinic serves
- you must have a low income
Most clinics also give brief advice or what’s called “summary advice”, without asking about your financial situation. If your local clinic can’t help you, they may be able to refer you to someone in your community who can.
Housing Help Association of Ontario
Tribunals Ontario – Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB)
Contact InformationPhone 416-645-8080 Toll-free 1-888-332-3234 Toll-free TTY 1-800-855-0511 (Bell Relay Service)
The Landlord and Tenant Board is the tribunal that decides issues between landlords and tenants.
You can also call the Board for information. The Board can’t give legal advice.
The Human Rights Legal Support Centre (HRLSC)
Contact InformationPhone 416-597-4900 Toll-free 1-866-625-5179 TTY 416-597-4903 Toll-free TTY 1-866 612-8627
The centre gives free legal information and advice to people who have experienced discrimination. They can:
- help you fill out an application to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario
- give legal advice about how to deal with discrimination
- provide legal representation at mediations and hearings, in some situations
They have an online tool that can help you figure out if your situation might be discrimination.
Centre for Equality Rights in Accommodation (CERA)
Contact InformationPhone 416-944-0087 Toll-free 1-800-263-1139
CERA is an organization that works with tenants mainly by telephone and email. Their staff are not lawyers or paralegals.
Tenants facing eviction can get information about the eviction process and services that can help them. CERA’s human rights services include helping tenants who:
- are being discriminated against when looking for housing
- are being harassed
- need accommodation for a human rights reason, such as a disability
- want general information about human rights or the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario
Francophone legal advice lines
LAO has 4 free regional advice lines that give legal information and advice in French over the telephone to people living in:
- Eastern Ontario
- Northern Ontario, and parts of central Ontario including:
- Parry Sound
- Muskoka and Kawartha Lakes regions
- Greater Toronto Area
- Southwestern Ontario
The advice lines do not help with family law or criminal law matters.
Ontario Legal Information Centre
Contact InformationPhone 613-842-7462 Toll-free 1-844-343-7462
Pro Bono Ontario – Free legal advice hotline
Contact InformationPhone 1-855-255-7256
The hotline can give you 30 minutes of free legal help and advice over the telephone on civil law matters, which include:
- consumer issues
- Powers of Attorney
- corporate law for charities, non-profits, and small businesses
It doesn’t help with family law or criminal law problems.
The hotline generally accepts calls Monday to Friday between 9:30 a.m. and 12 noon, and from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
York Region Housing Mediation Services
Contact InformationPhone 905-505-2535
The York Region Housing Mediation Services provides free mediation services to help resolve disputes between landlord and tenants, and between tenants. Both sides must agree to mediation. If you agree, you will each meet with a different mediator to discuss your issues and how you would like resolve them. Everyone will then meet together to see if an agreement can be reached.