The Law Commission of Ontario is an independent organization that researches issues and recommends law reform measures to make the law accessible to all members of Ontario’s communities.

The Law Commission of Ontario is made up of legal researchers and other staff who have a genuine interest in the issues they serve. Each member contributes to improving the lives of Ontarians – because the law affects everyone.

Mandate

The LCO was originally established by Agreement dated July 6, 2007, and subsequently renewed for five years on January 1, 2012 and January 1, 2017. Through this partnership, the Law Commission of Ontario has a mandate to make recommendations to:

  • make the legal system more relevant, accessible and efficient
  • simplify or clarify the law
  • use technology to increase access to justice
  • stimulate critical debate about law, and
  • promote scholarly legal research

Guiding Values

1

Excellence

in our work, our employment and our administrative practices

2

Innovation

reshaping the law where appropriate, and using technology to reform how law reform is approached

3

Inclusiveness

working and collaborating with interested groups and individuals – legal and non-legal

4

Integrity

ethical practice in all of our work

5

Multidisciplinary

focusing on diverse areas of legal/social issues and going beyond the law to conduct our research and form our recommendations

6

Relevance

focusing on topical and forward-looking projects

7

Transparency

open process for project proposals, selection and progress – public feedback and contributions are welcome

8

Pragmatism

our recommendations are to the point and capable of implementation

9

Accountability

we are accountable to our partners – and to the general public

Our Approach

Recommending Law Reform Measures in Doctrinal & Broad Contexts


The Law Commission of Ontario recommends law reform measures using two approaches:

  • Broad projects – assesses the relationship between law and social circumstances
  • Doctrinal projects – focus on individual laws and analyze ways to “improve” and “modernize”

The Law Commission of Ontario conducts research on a number of key projects throughout the year. Our broad range of research combines a focused analysis of the law with the insights of non-legal disciplines.

Using Multidisciplinary Analysis to Improve the Law


We approach law reform as an activity that is centered on law, but that must involve multidisciplinary analysis and recommendations. Although we research focused areas of law, many of our major projects involve large social questions. This requires research using a combination of non-legal disciplines to complete the story – social, economic and, psychological, for example – because only then will we truly understand the impact of law on those affected. Our multidisciplinary approach helps us to provide context and:

  • Look beyond individual laws to analyze the broader social issues themselves
  • Consider how Ontario laws impact those affected by these social issues
  • Make recommendations to change these laws to better serve Ontarians