Legal problems that are left unaddressed can have a domino effect, leading to other problems such as medical issues, employment issues and homelessness. Recognizing legal problems early on and taking action when problems are identified may help reduce the chance of additional problems occurring.
To that end, the Canadian Bar Association has created a series of Legal Health Checks that can assist individuals with identifying their own legal matters, and provide lawyers with a way to start conversations with people about the law. There are a total of 29 Legal Health Checks, and are all available in English and in French.
The Legal Health Checks are available in a variety of areas including:
Each Legal Health Check offers a checklist of issues to keep in mind, which will help avoid problems and understand what legal issues to look out for in various circumstances.
For instance, what financial issues should you think about before you get married or move in with your partner? Have you considered how to handle major expenses together, or how to handle debt while together or if the relationship ends? How will you handle property and financial issues if one partner dies during the relationship? The “Marrying or Moving In?” Legal Health Check will help you consider these and other questions so that you are prepared to make the choice about whether or not to have a written prenuptial or cohabitation agreement.
These Legal Health Checks are just the first step in addressing and identifying some common legal issues. We encourage you to check with your local public legal education organization, such as the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta for more information, or to speak to a lawyer (or visit a volunteer lawyer at one of Alberta’s pro bono legal clinics) about your particular situation.