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Stephen Parker

Paralegal Candidates
Stephen Parker

Candidate bio description

Prior to defending drivers in 1986, I served as a police officer for 15 years. I have been practicing in the POA courts for over 32 years. I was appointed in 2006 to the original Paralegal Standing Committee which worked to establish the paralegal competencies, rules of conduct and regulations. I was licensed in March of 2008. I later served on the working group with the Law Society to revise the competencies for the new paralegal licencing exam. I was the first President of the Ontario Paralegal Association between 2014 and 2018, where I was instrumental in the cancelling of the Attorney General’s proposed AMPS for moving violations and I also participated in the Family Legal Services Review. I am also a member of the LSO's Coach & Advisor Network.

What inspired you to run for bencher this year?

Having served on the Paralegal Standing Committee between 2006 and 2010, there is some unfinished business in the areas of education and paralegal licence exemptions that I would like to finalize. As the original president of the Ontario Paralegal Association for the past four years, I worked closely with the Law Society on several issues and I would be privileged to be given the opportunity to return to Convocation to continue to work for access to justice.

What do you believe is the biggest issue facing the legal profession?

Providing adequate and affordable access to justice. The raising the bar on paralegal education.

What would be your first priority upon election?

To listen to the concerns and issues of fellow Benchers and to work towards a mutual understanding as to how to work together to improve and maintain the relationship between lawyers and paralegals to be able to advance the professions in the public interest.

What do you hope to achieve over the next four years as a member of Convocation?

• Elimination of paralegal licence exemptions • Allowing paralegals to appear on Appeals from the Small Claims Court • Expanding the education on appeals from the Small Claims Court • Complete the requirements for paralegals to start education towards obtaining a Family Law Services Licence • To push for the current paralegal licencing and regulation regime in Ontario to be considered a program under s. 802.1 of the Criminal Code for the purpose of permitting paralegals to appear on summary conviction matters. • To explore paralegals becoming Notaries. • To explore paralegals coming under the Federal immigration rules to permit the preparation of documents

What's the most pressing concern for the profession in your region of the province?

• Allowing paralegals to appear on Appeals from the Small Claims Court • Expanding the education on appeals from the Small Claims Court • Complete the requirements for paralegals to start education towards obtaining a Family Law Services Licence • To push for the current paralegal licencing and regulation regime in Ontario to be considered a program under s. 802.1 of the Criminal Code for the purpose of permitting paralegals to appear on summary conviction matters. • To explore paralegals becoming Notaries. • To explore paralegals coming under the Federal immigration rules to permit the preparation of documents

Do you support the requirement to create and abide by a statement of principles?

Embracing diversity and inclusion can never be a bad thing. It is something that is expected anyway so i do not really see much of an issue in signing a piece of paper to that effect.

Poll Question


The Law Society of Ontario is in the midst of a major overhaul of the role of paralegals in family law — and a proposal on the issue could become an imminent issue for the regulator’s newly elected benchers. Do you agree with widening the scope of family law matters that paralegals can address?