Last updated March 11, 2020
Welcome to People’s Law School (“People’s”, “we”), a source of everyday legal information for all British Columbians. We’re so glad you found us.
Plain language use (as much as possible!)
At People’s, we pride ourselves on explaining everyday legal concepts in language everyone can understand — not just lawyers! No “thereunto”s and “notwithstanding”s here.
That said, some of the legal concepts below are complicated. And sometimes we have to go into the legal weeds, well … for legal reasons. But whenever we do that, we first offer a plain language summary of the legal terms that follow. We hope it helps.
Use of this website is governed by the laws that apply in the province of British Columbia.
Any questions you submit
Don’t submit personal information
No solicitor-client relationship
It’s very important that you understand that we aren’t acting as your lawyer. Using the website, submitting a question to the website, or emailing our staff is not intended to create a solicitor-client relationship.
The question and any response may be published
When you submit a question to People’s Law School, you agree that the question and any response may be published on the site. People’s Law School reserves the right to edit your question before publishing it. We also reserve the right not to publish your question.
Any comments you post
We appreciate your feedback and comments, but we also want to keep things civil
People’s Law School encourages and appreciates comments to or about our website, Facebook or other social media pages that contribute to thoughtful, constructive, and respectful discussion. Comments may or may not be published to our website. Comments reflect the views and opinions of the user that posted them.
We reserve the right to review, monitor, and prohibit comments, without notice, for any reason. But we might not catch all the ones that don’t belong. (We’re a non-profit, after all, and so our resources are limited!) We assume no responsibility for users’ comments. Nor do we assume any obligation to monitor, modify, or remove any inappropriate comments. We reserve the right to edit or delete any comment we feel is contrary to our best interests and reputation.
This one is important — People’s Law School does not give legal advice
At People’s Law School, we believe accurate, plain English information can help people take action to work out their legal problems. The information on this website explains in a general way the law that applies in British Columbia. It is not intended as legal advice.
Information provided in any email or response from staff or volunteers associated with People’s Law School explains in a general way the law that applies in British Columbia.
Templates provided on this website are samples only. They are not intended as legal advice.
What’s the difference between legal information and legal advice?
Legal information explains the law in general terms. It can discuss options and possible next steps.
Legal advice applies the law to a client’s unique situation. It includes recommending a particular option or next step, or assuring a client that, indeed, this information applies to them.
We recommend that you consult a legal professional in British Columbia if you want recommendations on what steps to take next, or assurance that certain information is appropriate to your circumstances.
We use user stories to bring our content to life
The cases we refer to reflect real experiences, but names and images have been changed to protect people’s privacy. The cases are included to help you think about how to deal with your own problem.
We link to other websites, and generally make sure their information is correct, but we can’t guarantee it
The inclusion of a link to another site should not be taken as an endorsement by People’s Law School of that other site. Nor should it be taken as establishing any association with the operators of that other site. People’s Law School has no control over the availability of the linked pages.
Where another website has embedded content from this website, People’s Law School assumes no responsibility for any other content on that website. The inclusion of People’s Law School content on another site should not be taken as an endorsement by People’s Law School of that other site. Nor should it be taken as establishing any association with the operators of that other site.
Availability of the website
Availability of our website 24/7 can’t be guaranteed. Downtime happens, so don’t rely on us as your sole source of legal information.
We cannot guarantee that our website remains available at all times. And sometimes, laws change. We update our information continuously, but there may be instances where People’s content is out of date. We disclaim any liability for damages resulting from such problems.
The website may be available through certain mobile devices. You acknowledge and agree that we are not responsible for ensuring that your mobile device’s software is compatible for you to access the website through your mobile device.
We may immediately terminate your ability to access the website at any time, for any reason, with or without notice.
The broad disclaimer
Here’s a broad disclaimer our lawyers make us include. Basically: you use this website at your own risk. We can’t guarantee it will be free from viruses, nor can we guarantee that the information will always be 100% accurate. (We certainly aim for that, but the laws that we break down for you do change, and it takes time to update things.)
We, our affiliates, subsidiaries, directors, officers, employees, advisors and agents make no representations or warranties of any kind that access to the website will be uninterrupted, without delay or failure, or the accuracy or the completeness of the data provided. To the fullest extent permitted by law, all warranties of any type, express or implied, are expressly disclaimed. Any information or material accessed or otherwise obtained through the use of the website or services by any means of access whatsoever is at your own discretion and risk and you will be solely responsible for any damage to your computer system, loss of data, failure to transmit data or any other loss that results from accessing, using or relying on any such material. We do not warrant that the website is free of contaminating or other harmful components.
We do not warrant, endorse, guarantee, provide any conditions or representations, or assume any responsibility for any product or service advertised or offered by linked sites and we will not be a party to any transaction that you may enter into with any such third party.
Limitation of liability
This next paragraph deals with limitation of liability. More fifty-dollar words. This follows on the last section, and confirms that you won’t hold us liable for any problems that result from your use of the website.
You expressly agree that your use of the website or services is at your sole risk. We are not liable under contract law, tort law, or otherwise, for any damages of any kind arising from your use of this website or any information on the website. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, in no event will we be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, exemplary, or other damages (including damages for loss of data or profit, or any other pecuniary loss, arising out of the use, or inability to use, the website). These limitations will apply even if we have been advised of the possibility of such damages. These limitations will apply to the fullest extent permitted by law.
In this next bit, you’re agreeing to cover any costs we incur as a result of your wrongful use of the website. (For example, if you try to infect our server with a virus. But who would want to do such a thing?)
You will indemnify and hold People’s, its affiliates and each of their officers, directors, employees, and agents from and against any and all claims, threats, actions, proceedings, demands, damages, losses, obligations, costs, and expenses including reasonable lawyers’ fees, made by any third party due to any violation by you of these terms, or any violation by you of any rights of another (including all intellectual property rights and rights of publicity, personality or privacy).
Use of content published on this website
The content on the this website, except for the images and videos, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (“CC BY-NC-SA 4.0”).
CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 is an open license — an alternative to traditional copyright that enables and encourages sharing of intellectual property. Except for the images, you are free to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format, and to adapt, remix, and build upon the material under the following terms:
Attribution. You must give credit to People’s Law School. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests People’s Law School endorses you or your use.
Non-commercial. You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
ShareAlike. If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your work under the same CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license.
Limits on use of images and video
Support for open licensing
People’s Law School is pleased to be part of a global movement of public institutions, governments, and not-for-profit organizations who have chosen to adopt open licensing policies. Open licenses provide a standard way for content creators to grant someone else permission to use their work. In doing so, we believe we are demonstrating our commitment to information sharing and building capacity for social innovation in the community.
The People’s Law School open licensing approach is adapted from the Hewlett Foundation Open Licensing Toolkit for Staff from the Hewlett Foundation and the Vancouver Foundation Open Licensing Policy from the Vancouver Foundation.
Questions about these terms
If you have any questions or comments about these terms, please contact us.