Some Points on How VLAF Funding Works
Rather than providing direct legal advice or representation to veterans, the VLAF provides funding so that veterans can retain their own legal counsel. This funding is provided on a discretionary basis to ensure it supports cases that may affect veterans more broadly. Our Board assesses funding requests, and supports cases that have the potential to set a precedent and thereby assist the wider veteran community.
For example, we have funded applications in Federal Court seeking to overturn decisions made by the Veterans Review and Appeal Board or internal Veterans Affairs. Generally, the cases funded by the VLAF would not include civil cases seeking damages.
Our process is to screen cases through legal counsel. We ask veterans to find legal counsel and have counsel provide us with a summary of the proposed case, a review of the merits, and a funding request.
When you submit a request, we will ensure it is brought forward at the next monthly Board meeting. We typically advise veterans shortly after that meeting.
If you have a legal matter that you feel may have an impact on fellow veterans, we would encourage you to seek legal counsel and make a formal funding request to the VLAF.
Before You Apply for Legal Expense Support
1. Check That You
a) Meet the definition of a Canadian Veteran under Veterans Affairs Canada criteria; and,
b) Have a legal issue that, if resolved, could be helpful to other veterans who may have a similar need.
Identify a lawyer who is prepared to assist you and help you apply. You will be required to submit a letter from your lawyer stating their intention to assist. For a list of potential lawyers, visit Finding Legal Help.