VSA

Consumer

Other places to go for help

If you’re looking for translation services:

Society of Translators and Interpreters of British Columbia
Find a translator or Interpreter from their certified member directory.

Mosaic BC
Interpretation and translation services operates on a fee-for-service basis, coordinating the work of over 300 language specialists in more than 70 languages.

The Yellow Pages
Search for a local translator or interpreter by city.

If you’re looking for legal advice:

Access Pro Bono
This for those that cannot afford a lawyer, legal advice in most areas of law is given through free clinics held throughout Vancouver. Appointments can be booked by calling 604-878-7400 or 1-877-762-6664, or online.

Clicklaw
Provides access to legal information and offers several options on solving legal problems. It is available online.

Dial-a-Law
Provides access to free information of the law in British Columbia, including knowing your legal rights for buying or repairing a car.  Visit their website or listen to information on the telephone by calling 604-687-4680 or 1-800-565-5297.

Lawyer Referral
This is not a stand-alone organization – it is Access Pro Bono which is for those that cannot afford a lawyer, half hour of free legal advice. The consultation will determine if there is a legal problem. The service operates by telephone and can be reached at 604-687-3221 or 1-800-663-1919. Clicklaw Provides access to legal information and offers several options on solving legal problems.

UBC Law Students’ Legal Advice Program (LSLAP)
LSLAP assists low-income earners who live in the Greater Vancouver area with various legal issues.  Everything that students put out needs to be confirmed by supervising lawyers, therefore their response time is about 2 – 3 weeks.  Call 604-822-5791 to book an appointment to speak to a clinician or visit their website.

University of Victoria – The Law Centre
The Law Centre provides free legal representation to people in the Greater Victoria area who qualify for legal assistance.  Call 250-385-1221 to discuss your eligibility for their services.  To determine your eligibility there is an income and asset test, as well as many other factors that will be taken into account to determine the services that might be available to you or visit their website.

If you’re looking for consumer protection information:

Consumer Protection BC
Is a non-profit corporation established to strengthen consumer protection in BC. They enforce consumer protection laws (except regarding motor dealers, lawyers and some other professions) and encourage fair business practices. Complaint handling and resource guides are available on their website. They are also accessible at 1-888-564-9963.

Better Business Bureau (BBB)
Includes an accredited business and charity directory, consumer tips, alerts, and guides. Those in the Lower Mainland call 604-682-2711; the rest of BC call toll free at 1-888-803-1222. More information can be found online.

Canadian Motor Vehicle Arbitration Plan (CAMVAP)
Helps consumers resolve disputes with a manufacturer on vehicle defects or warranty through arbitration. All services are free. To see if you qualify, visit their website or call 1-800-207-0685.

Office of Consumer Affairs, Canada
Gives information on consumer issues and provides tools and resources. Also offers a step- by-step roadmap on how to make a consumer complaint.

Mediate BC
Specializes in dispute resolution through mediation and offers mediation information and services, as well as a directory of available mediators.

Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT)
Has an online Solution Explorer will diagnose your problem and give you legal information and self-help tools. If the dispute remains unresolved, a formal complaint process can be started. For small claims disputes of $5,000 and under, the use of the CRT for dispute resolution is mandatory. For more information, visit their website.

Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for B.C. (OIPC)
Oversees B.C.’s access and privacy acts and works to protect the privacy rights of B.C. residents. They can investigate privacy and access complaints.

Office of the Ombudsperson
Investigates complaints about unfair administrative actions from provincial public authorities. Call them toll-free at 1-800-567-3247 or visit their website for more information.

If you have any questions, please contact VSA Consumer Services.

NOTE: This is to provide general information and is not intended to be legal advice.