Join Us

The Association has three main classes of membership to choose from:

1. Active Member (Full Member)

  • Junior Active members have been called in the last two years
  • Senior Active members have been called for 3+ years


2. Student Member

  • Current law students
  • Articling students (articling in criminal defence)


3. Observer Member

  • Junior Observer members have been called in the last two years
  • Senior Observer members have been called for 3+ years


Membership applications may be submitted any time between December 15, 2017 to September 15, 2018 and will provide the applicant with a membership up to March 31, 2019. Memberships are non-refundable or transferable.

NOTE: Membership applications are not processed between December 15 and January 1. Any applications received during this period will be processed when the CLA office opens on January 2, 2018.

Please allow up to 15 business days for applications to be reviewed and fully processed.

Benefits of membership:

Membership benefits for both Active (Full) and Student members:

  • CLA Membership ID card. Personalized photo identification cards are available to active and student members at no charge. Through special arrangements with the Ministry of Correctional Services, these cards have been designated as an acceptable form of identification for purposes of obtaining unobstructed access to the various detention facilities.
  • CLA voting privileges (Active members only – for director position votes, applicable to region/city noted in your CLA membership record)
  • Can run for any director positions on CLA Board (Active members only)
  • Include in online membership directory
  • Listserv access (e-mail discussion forum with more than 850 criminal lawyers)
  • Access to members only section of website
  • Member rates on Spring and Fall Conference
  • Special rates to all CLA professional development programs
  • Conference materials at member pricing
  • Subscription to For The Defence newsletter


Active (Full) Membership:
If you are a practicing criminal defence lawyer in Ontario in good standing with the Law Society of Upper Canada and a significant portion of your practice is devoted to the defence of criminal charges or you are a lawyer who devotes a significant portion of your efforts to the interests of the defence bar, then you are eligible for Active membership in the Criminal Lawyers’ Association.
Download application.

$169.50 ($150 + $19.50 HST)
Called to the bar after January 1, 2016

$339.00 ($300 + $39.00 HST)
Called to the bar on or before December 31, 2015



Student Membership:
If you are a student-at-law, articling student (in criminal law) or a student in an accredited law school, you may apply for a Student membership.
Download application.

$84.75 ($75 + $9.75 HST)

Please note that student members are required to notify the CLA office once they have passed the bar. In order to maintain a membership with the CLA after passing the bar, the individual must then be a practicing criminal defence lawyer. Those that end up not becoming practicing criminal defence lawyers will have their membership lapsed with no refund.



Observer Membership:
For practicing criminal lawyers OUTSIDE of Ontario who do NOT practise in Ontario at all.
Download application.

$56.50 ($50 + $6.50 HST)
Called to the bar after January 1, 2016

$113.00 ($100 + $13.00 HST)
Called to the bar on or before December 31, 2015

Benefits that WILL be provided to Observer Members:

  • Include in online membership directory
  • Listserv access (e-mail discussion forum with more than 850 criminal lawyers)
  • Access to members only section of website
  • Member rates on Spring and Fall Conference
  • Conference materials at member pricing
  • For The Defence newsletter

Benefits that WILL NOT be available to Observer members:

  • CLA Membership ID card
  • CLA voting privileges
  • Cannot run for any director positions on CLA Board



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Criminal Lawyers’ Association

189 Queen Street East, Suite 1
Toronto, ON M5A 1S2
P. 416-214-9875
F. 416-968-6818
[email protected]

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