This tipsheet is a publication of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta. It looks at the key differences between providing legal information vs. legal advice.
The following services answer questions by phone, internet chat or e-mail. Some provide general information while others are limited to specific topics.
CPLEA Suggested Resources
Not sure where to begin finding answers to your questions. Get started with our suggested resources. See additional resources below for more information.
211 is an easy to remember three-digit telephone number that connects callers to a full range of social, health, government and community services (including some legal services). In Alberta, the 211 service is currently (Nov. 2010) being delivered to residents of Calgary, Chestermere, Cochrane, Edmonton, Parkland County, Leduc and Strathcona County.
Non-emergency 311 call systems, used increasingly in Alberta cities, offer a number of advantages. They give citizens a quick, convenient way to kvetch about problems in their neighborhoods, and get a response. Assistance with civic information and services.Service offers:
- telephone assistance on civic information and services
- online system to request a City service
- information including but not restricted to Animal Services, General Bylaw Services, Fire Prevention Bureau, Parks, Recreation Programs and Facilities, Waste and Recycling Services, Waterworks and Waste Water
The Research Centre undertakes research on contemporary civil liberties and human rights issues that are of concern to Albertans.The Centre responds to members of the public who call with questions about civil liberties and human rights. They receive hundreds of calls every year, and provide information or refer callers to other resources.
The Resolution and Court Administration Services Division provides administrative support to all the courts within the province, including electronic legal information services through Alberta Law Libraries. Topics in this section of the Alberta Courts website include: Mediation Programs; Family Justice Services; Court Forms and Orders Services (formly known as the Family Law Information Centre (FLIC) and LInC - Law Information Centres); Judgments; Jury Duty; ; Sheriff - Civil Enforcement; Review / Assessment Office; Rules of Court; Transcript Management Services; Publications; Video Conferencing. They also offer: Information services for the public on court procedures and legal services options; assistance with locating and filling out court forms; and referrals to other community legal services, as well as assessment services, dispute resolution services for child support, family and child medication, conflict intervention, family mediation, and civil mediation to help parties who filed an action in small claims court to reach a negotiated settlement.
The Alberta Seniors and Community Supports department provides information about financial, health-related, and protective services for seniors. This webpage lists the contact information for regional offices. Or call the Alberta Supports Contact Centre Toll-free in Alberta: 1-877-644-9992, Monday to Friday 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Alberta Works helps unemployed people find and keep jobs, employers meet their need for skilled workers, Albertans with low incomes cover their basic costs of living. They offer services in different ways through: Employment Services, Employment and Career Resources,Training Supports, Alberta Job & Career Fairs., Workforce Partnerships, Income Support, and Health Benefits. See also: Information on the Alberta Supports Contact Centres.
This webpage describes the types of information that can be provided and offers a web form for submitting a question.
This webpage provides an instant messaging (chat) window and link to submit a question by e-mail; or you can call 403-220-8895. Reference service is available to the University of Calgary community, to visitors to the University community, and to the Southern Alberta community at large.
This webpage provides links to ask a question by chat service or e-mail or you can call 780-492-4174.
This service is offered by Alberta Child and Youth Services, Family Violence Prevention Unit. Help is provided in more than 170 languages. If you are looking for advice on supporting bullying prevention, or support to deal with bullying, please call the Bullying Helpline, 1-888-456-2323, toll-free 24/7.
The Calgary Chinese Community Service Association is an ethnocultural community service agency. CCSA offers four core programs: Children and Youth, Integration and Civic Engagement (ICE), Health Program, and Legal Program. Their Law and Advocacy Program is funded by the Alberta Law Foundation and provides a range of services including: basic legal information and referrals, Commissioner for Oaths and Notary, a free legal outreach clinic. and free Wills & Estates Document Drafting Services (CCCSA provides free drafting services for Personal Directives, Enduring Powers of Attorney, and Wills for low-income seniors (ages 65+). Asset screening will be conducted for eligibility. and will and estate documents drafting services.)
The Central Alberta Women's Outreach Society provides basic needs and emotional support for individuals as well as providing education and support in specific areas such as domestic violence, family law, and the effects of crisis on families. The Society offers a legal information and referrals program. This program provides legal information and referrals to individuals as they navigate through the legal and judicial system. Their staff will assist clients to identify legal issues and prioritize legal needs.
The Distress Centre offers a main crisis and addictions line as well as specialty phone lines providing crisis intervention and information and referral services 24/7, 365 days a year. Short-term crisis counseling is also available in person. 24 hour Crisis Line 403-266-4357.
For information about Alberta Employment Standards call the province-wide toll-free line 1-877-427-3731 or in the Edmonton calling area dial 780-427-3731. The web page provides a form to submit a question or concern online.
This service is offered by Alberta Child and Youth Services, Family Violence Prevention Unit. Help is provided in more than 170 languages. If you think someone you know is experiencing family violence, reach out by calling the Family Violence Info Line at 310-1818, toll-free 24/7.
The Support Network is located in Edmonton, Alberta, and provides community information services, crisis intervention, and suicide prevention. Its help lines are free, anonymous, confidential, and available every hour, every day. Help is also available in person and online. 24-Hour Distress Line: 780-482-HELP(4357)
Youthlaw.ca is a website of the Children's Legal and Educational Resource Centre (CLERC) in Calgary. If you are unable to find the information you are looking for in the Law Topics section of the Youthlaw.ca site, or you need further assistance with your legal problem, you can complete the form on this page to ask your question.
Service Canada offers single-window access to a wide range of Government of Canada programs and services. For general enquiries call toll-free 1 800 O-Canada (1-800-622-6232), Monday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., your local time. In addition, this web page provides contact information for a variety of specific programs and services.