Artists’ Legal Advice Services (ALAS) is looking for volunteer lawyers with experience in arts and entertainment law to volunteer for the ALAS Legal Clinic and/or for speaking engagements at our educational workshops and seminars.
ALAS’ mission is to empower Ontario’s creative community by providing access to summary legal advice, information and education. As a volunteer-run organization, the fulfillment of our mission is made possible through the generosity and efforts of our volunteer lawyers, law students and fellow creators.
Volunteer Clinic Lawyer
Overview: ALAS offers creators 30-minute free legal consults (via Zoom) almost every Tuesday (5-7pm), Thursday (5-7 pm) and Friday (12 – 1pm). Our volunteer lawyers (“duty counsel”) can choose how often they volunteer. We ask that volunteers sign up for a minimum of 5 shifts a year. Duty Counsel provides summary legal information to clients. The issues usually relate to contract or copyright law; however, it can be related to any part of a creator’s practice.
The summary legal advice provided through ALAS is not intended as part of on-going legal services, and is offered without any requirement or expectation of preparation, research or follow-up. ALAS provides onboarding for all new duty counsel and will help ensure you are comfortable running your own sessions before setting you off on your own.
ALAS Duty Counsel also get to provide mentorship and education to law students who take care of all the administration for setting up the clinic. If permitted by the creator, the law students will join the session and get to hear the advice provided. After the clinic session is over, the Duty Counsel holds a follow up meeting with the students to answer any questions they may have.
Duty counsel for the ALAS program must:
- Be a member in good standing of the Law Society of Ontario, licensed to practice law in the Province of Ontario;
- Be insured to practice law in Ontario (Law Pro) — ALAS is not insured, and volunteer lawyers are required to be covered by their own individual professional insurance when acting as duty counsel;
- Have at least two (2) years of experience in practice (in private practice or as in-house counsel) in arts and entertainment law, or have some equivalent form of experience with the arts and the law;
- Coordinate with the volunteer student administrators of ALAS and the chair or vice-chair of ALAS on operational matters (including scheduling), adhere to the policies of the ALAC board, and (if required) report to the ALAS board or the chair and vice-chair of ALAS (for greater certainty, not on individual meetings with artists or arts entities);
- Ensure that they are not in a conflict situation with respect to any persons seeking advice via the ALAS clinic (including with respect to any parties that the artist may be dealing with or inquiring about);
- Maintain confidentiality with respect to any services provided;
- Engage with and mentor student volunteers at appointments;
- Understand that summary legal advice services are provided on a pro bono basis; and
- Not advertise or offer their services to artists visiting the ALAS legal clinic, or subsequently advise artists met via the ALAS legal clinic in a professional capacity as part of their private practice regarding the same matter discussed via the ALAS clinic.
If you wish to join the ALAS duty counsel roster, please send your resume and a covering letter to firstname.lastname@example.org using the subject line “Volunteer Lawyer for Duty Counsel with ALAS.”
Volunteer Seminar Speaker:
Overview: ALAS is looking to expand its roster of speakers willing to provide pro bono seminars and webinars on a variety of legal topics that may address issues faced by artists across all disciplines.
-Called to the bar in Ontario
– Be energetic and comfortable providing legal information seminars to artists and creators
– We have an immediate need for lawyers who can give presentations in French.
If you are interested in joining our roster of volunteer speakers, or would like additional information about our educational events, please write to email@example.com using the subject line “Volunteer Speaker with ALAS.”