Law Clerk

The rule of law is the backbone of society. It ensures we all enjoy the same access to our freedoms and rights, roles and responsibilities. In many ways, the law field is the most crucial institution in the country and law clerks play an important role. If being a part of this prestigious career intrigues you, Fanshawe’s Law Clerk program will provide you with the training needed to become a valuable member of a legal team.


In the Law Clerk program, you will develop a solid understanding of several areas of law that will provide a number of career opportunities in a growing field. In-class labs will provide you with practical hands-on training and you will receive extensive training on leading software and online applications used by law firms and legal departments in Canada. The program also provides a paid co-op work term that lets you earn while you learn. As a graduate of the Law Clerk program, you will be ready to confidently enter the legal profession where there is high demand for those who can provide critical legal team support.

The program offers intakes in both September and January and is often waitlisted. Ensure you apply prior to the equal consideration deadline to secure your spot.

Program Overview

Fanshawe's Law Clerk program is a two-year Ontario College Diploma designed to provide students with a solid understanding of the legal principles that students will need to enter the diverse, fast-paced field of law. 

You will study several areas of Canadian law including civil litigation, corporate/commercial, debtor and creditor rights, real estate, landlord and tenant, estate administration, family law and contracts. Experiential learning opportunities allow you to refine your communication and information processing skills as you learn how to research, analyze and write in the legal environment. You will develop an ability to work with a variety of leading-edge legal software applications and online commercial legal databases and services.

Depending upon your choice of career path, you could find yourself preparing motion records and trial documentation, interviewing witnesses, arranging trial dates and adjournments, drafting corporate/commercial documentation, completing Family Law Act financial statements, administering estates, negotiating leases, administering contracts, completing legal research, searching titles or processing real estate transactions. A co-op version of this program is also available.


Career Information

Graduates of Fanshawe’s Law Clerk program find career opportunities in law firms, corporate legal departments, financial institutions, insurance companies, title insurance companies, Federal, Provincial and Municipal governments, court offices, registry offices, government boards and tribunals, legal aid, legal technology and legal services providers. A career as a law clerk offers challenge, diversity, flexibility and advancement in the fast-paced, constantly changing legal environment. Graduates are also well prepared to succeed in Fanshawe’s Paralegal program.


Did you know Fanshawe consistently ranks high in graduation employment rates among large colleges in Ontario? 

Here are some examples of career opportunities for graduates of Fanshawe’s Law Clerk program:

Class Action Law Clerk
Support a class actions department by researching and filing documents related to court proceedings.

Real Estate Law Clerk
Support a lawyer’s work on real estate files from start to finish.

Family Law Clerk

Play an integral role in a family law firm by providing administrative support to legal counsel.


The Law Clerk program can be challenging and rigorous at times, but the support of the professors, and the student support centre, instill confidence and understanding for student’s individual success. Professors put a great deal of effort and time into lectures both in the physical and virtual classrooms to provide students with the highest level of education.

Julie Russell
Law Clerk student
Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Support the needs of clients and legal professionals through the use of accurate terminology and professional communication strategies, both orally and in writing;
  2. Complete all work within routine and unexpected time lines and limitation periods within the legal environment;
  3. Use current and relevant electronic and print resources, within the legal environment, to conduct legal research, to assist with file and evidentiary management, to facilitate communication and generate legal documentation, complying with current regulations and procedures;
  4. Research and summarize the presenting legal issues, applying knowledge of substantive law, to support the legal team;
  5. Apply rules of procedure to support best legal practices;
  6. Conduct oneself professionally in adherence to the guidelines of the Law Society of Upper Canada;
  7. Carry out clerical and administrative duties for the operation of a variety of legal environments;
  8. Outline strategies for ongoing professional development to ensure continuing competence as a Law Clerk;
  9. Act equitably and justly with diverse populations*;
  10. Provide support for legal professionals in courts and administrative tribunals within the legal system.


Program Availability

Canadian Students

Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2022 September
2023 January

International Students

Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2023 January

Program Details

Program Code

Program Coordinator:

Barbara Bidner, B.A., LL.B.

Day Time
Ontario College Diploma
60 weeks

Admission Requirements

OSSD with courses from the College (C), University (U),
University/College (M), or Open (O) stream WITH:
- English ONE OF:
    -Any Grade 12 English (U)
    -Any Grade 12 English (C) (minimum final grade required is 65)
- Mathematics ONE OF:
    -Any Grade 11 Mathematics (U) or (M)
    -Any Grade 12 Mathematics (U)
    -Grade 12 Mathematics for College Technology (C)
    -Grade 11 or Grade 12 Foundations for College Mathematics (C) (minimum final grade required is 65)
Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE) WITH:
    -Core Mathematics
(Note: minimum final grade required for each course is 65)
Public Safety Fundamentals Ontario College Certificate AND:
-Minimum final grade of 'C+' or 65 in the required courses stated above
General Arts and Science Ontario College Certificate AND:
-Minimum final grade of 'C+' or 65 in the required courses stated above
Ontario High School Equivalency Certificate (GED) WITH:
    -The combined Language Arts - Reading AND Language Arts - Writing test results having a minimum average Standard Score of 520 AND:
- Mathematics ONE OF:
    -Any Grade 11 Mathematics (U) or (M)
    -Any Grade 12 Mathematics (U)
    -Grade 12 Mathematics for College Technology (C)
    -Grade 11 or Grade 12 Foundations for College Mathematics (C) (minimum final grade required is 65)
Mature Applicant with standing in the required courses and grades stated above
English Language Requirements

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English by one of the following methods:

  • A Grade 12 College Stream or University Stream English credit from an Ontario Secondary School, or equivalent, depending on the program's Admission Requirements
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) test with a minimum score of 79 for the Internet-based test (iBT), with test results within the last two years
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic test with an overall score of 6.0 with no score less than 5.5 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years. SDS Program Requirements. 
  • Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) test with an overall score of 60 with no score less than 50 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years
  • Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE) with a minimum score of 53, with test results within the last two years
  • A Cambridge English Test (FCE/CAE/CPE) with an overall score on the Cambridge English Scale of 169 with no language skill less than 162, with test results within the last two years
  • An English Language Evaluation (ELE) at Fanshawe College with a minimum score of 70% in all sections of the test, with test results within the last two years
  • Fanshawe College ESL4/GAP5 students: Minimum grade of 80% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 8, 75% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 9, or 70% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 10
Recommended Academic Preparation

Recommended Academic Preparation

  •  Grade 11 Understanding Canadian Law (M) OR Grade 12 Canadian and International Law (U)
  •  Grade 12 English (U) is strongly recommended.  Advanced writing skills are essential. 
  •  Grade 12 Business and Technological Communication (O)
  •  Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE): Computer Skills course
Recommended Personal Preparation

Recommended Personal Preparation

  • Students should possess excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Students should possess basic computer skills
  • Students should develop a high degree of responsibility, maturity, conscientiousness and the ability to work independently with little supervision
  • Students should speak to a Law Clerk, Paralegal or Lawyer to acquire some knowledge of the duties of a Law Clerk
Applicant Selection Criteria

Applicant Selection Criteria

Where the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
  1. Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
  2. Receipt of Application by February 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
  3. Achievement in the Admission Requirements

Note: Admission to the Fanshawe College Public Safety Fundamentals program does not guarantee admission in a subsequent year to the Law Clerk program.  Successful completion of the Fanshawe College Public Safety Fundamentals program does, however, enable the student to be given additional consideration when applying to the Law Clerk program.  The Public Safety Fundamentals program is the preferred designated preparatory program for admission to the Law Clerk program.

Tuition Summary


Canadian Costs
Total Cost of Program
International Costs
Total Cost of Program

*Total program costs are approximate, subject to change and do not include the health and dental plan fee, bus pass fee or program general expenses.



Level 1
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:

Group 1
LAWS-1077Legal Materials-Intro3
Introduces students to the Canadian legal system. The course focuses on sources of Canadian law. Students are given the opportunity to become familiar with primary and secondary legal sources. The course will familiarize students with the process of finding legal materials to the extent necessary to follow instructions and to assist in legal research by locating and updating relevant legal materials.
LAWS-1007Civil Procedure4
This course is designed to provide a basic understanding of the rules of civil procedure and the necessary skills to assist in the processing of the various steps involved in a civil action, including drafting various documents required for civil litigation. Topics include commencing the action in the Superior Court of Justice, service of documents, pleadings, motions, discovery, listing for trial, orders and costs.
LAWS-1036Torts & Contracts4
An introduction to the law of torts, including intentional torts against persons, property or economic interests, and primarily the law of negligence. Included are the fundamentals of contract law including the requirements for the formation of a valid contract, different types of contracts and remedies for breaches of contract.
DEVL-1051Professionalism & Client Relations3
This course introduces students to professionalism in the legal field and adherence to the guidelines of the Law Society of Ontario as it relates to the role of a law clerk.Students explore appropriate professional boundaries with legal professionals, co-workers and clients; professional appearance and demeanor, and conflicts of interest. Requirements of confidentiality and the Law Society's Rules of Professional Conduct are introduced. Ongoing professional development is critical to ensuring continuing competence as a Law Clerk. Students will investigate professional development opportunities by outlining the roles of professional organizations and associations,articulating the value of continuing professional education, and identifying personal strengths and weaknesses. All students will complete a professional development plan to showcase their ongoing professional development strategy.
COMP-1529Computer Applications 13
This course introduces students to Microsoft® Word, Excel, and Outlook to prepare them to work efficiently and productively in the legal field. At the conclusion of this course students will be able to use Microsoft ® Word to create professional legal documents using correct formatting, spelling and grammar; Microsoft® Excel to create basic spreadsheets; and Microsoft® Outlook to assist with scheduling and organizing information. Students are introduced to the Law Society of Ontario's file and time management guidelines (the "Guidelines") and to Soluno® time, billing and accounting software and complete basic law firm accounting tasks that incorporate the Guidelines' principles and standards. To help students work towards achieving the industry standard for keyboarding, a minimum speed of 30 WPM is required for successful completion of this course.
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