A detailed budget must be submitted with every application for Court Challenges Program funding. All budgets must be in sufficient detail to permit the Panel to assess the overall cost of the project and the contribution the Program is being asked to make. If you do not have all the information you need to complete your budget, tell us as much as you can.
The budget information you submit is very important. It is used to prepare the budget which is submitted to the Panel for approval. If the Panel grants funding, an Approved Budget is prepared, on which we list the categories of expenses the Program will cover and the maximum amount available in each category. You will only be reimbursed for amounts which appear on the Approved Budget.
Budgets for equality and language rights cases (Case Funding and Case Development Funding) should be submitted on the Program's Model Budget Form. A copy of the form is included at the end of this guide.
Budgets for Negotiation Funding, Impact Study Funding and Program Promotion and Access Funding may be on the Model Budget Form but are not required to be.
Following is an explanation of the Model Budget Form. Even if you will not be using the Model Budget Form when you prepare your budget, you should read this information carefully. There are certain rules about budgets and limits on funding that you should be aware of. These rules and limits come from the Program's Funding Guidelines and are summarized below.
The Columns in the Model Budget Form
The first column describes the types of expenses which may be included in the budget and in some cases asks for numbers to be filled in; the second is called "Applicant or Pro Bono Contribution"; the third (on the right hand side) is "Request for Funding to Court Challenges Program".
The Program is not always able to pay the full cost of a case or project. Maximums have been established for the amount you can get for a case or project and also for the amount we will pay per hour for the people who work with you. The reason for setting maximums is that the Program wants to be able to provide funding to as many important cases as it reasonably can. If the cost of your case is more than the amount you receive from the Program, you will have to find a way to cover the difference.
For example, let's assume that your lawyer will be doing 20 hours of research work and usually charges $175.00 per hour for her time. As you will see as you read the rest of this guide, you can only ask the Program to cover $150.00 per hour of that cost. The entry in the Model Budget Form would look like this:
This indicates that the full cost of the research work is 20 X $175.00 = $3,500.00. Of that, you are permitted to ask the Program for 20 X $150.00 = $3,000.00.
You are responsible for finding a way to pay the other $500.00. Sometimes, lawyers will agree to work for less than their full rate (the part they do for free is called pro bono work); sometimes applicants are able to pay part of the cost themselves; sometimes contributions come from other groups or individuals who want to help with the cost.
Even if you are not using the Model Budget Form, we would like you to tell us the full cost of your project and, separately, the amount you are asking the Program to pay.
The Lines in the Model Budget Form
1. Timeframe for Funding - As a general rule, you may only ask us to repay you for expenses you will have after the funding application is submitted. If you already have expenses and are asking us to repay you for them, you must give us the exact amounts and explain why you didn't apply for funding before they came up. If you have a good reason for waiting, the Panel may agree to pay them.
We do not pay for the time spent preparing the application for funding.
2. Fees for Lawyers and Others - Often, much of the money that the Program gives you goes to pay for lawyers and other qualified people who provide services in your case or project. With the Panel's approval, you may be paid for some of the work you do yourself. We will reimburse you for the actual rate you are charged by these people but only up to the maximums set out below:
On the budget, you should tell us how much time will be spent in each fee category, how much your lawyer actually charges and how much you are asking the Program to pay. Be as specific as you can.
Travel time is only available for out of town travel.
If you do not know how much time will be spent in each category, please estimate the amount of time. It is possible to make an adjustment in your budget later if your estimate does not turn out to be correct.
You may want to ask the person who will be doing the work to estimate the amount of time it will take. If you do not know who will be doing it, just do the best you can.
3. Co-counsel - If your lawyer or you think it is necessary to hire a second lawyer from a different office to work on your case, you may ask us to repay you for that cost. We consider this an expense which requires special approval so you will have to explain why the other lawyer is necessary and what s/he can add to your case.
4. Consultations - If you are asking for consultation funding, with Case Development or as part of Program Promotion and Access, time for organizing the consultation goes in the Administrative Fee category called "coordination" (maximum $50.00 per hour), even if your lawyer does it.
If your lawyer attends the consultation to discuss the legal issues in your case, his/her time goes in the Research and Consultation fee category under "consultation" (maximum $150.00 per hour).
5. Disbursements - Disbursements are the out of pocket expenses that you or your lawyer has to pay to other people. If you look at the Model Budget form, there is a long list of disbursements which the Program can pay. Following are a few comments to help you understand what they are and how to ask for funding for them:
6. Taxes - If you are required to pay taxes, you must include them in your budget. You are asked to separate the GST (and PST in some provinces) on legal fees, administrative fees and disbursements. We will need to know the GST registration number of any person you are paying GST to.
7. Leaving blanks - If you do not think you will have expenses in one or more of the categories on the budget, leave them blank.
8. Things that don't fit - If you have expenses that do not fit on our form, tell us what they are and explain why they are necessary to your case or project. We will determine whether they are things we may be able to pay for and, if so, where they should go on the form.
9. Explaining your budget - You must explain any expense on your budget which requires special approval. You may also want to explain expenses which are unusually high or will not be clear to the Panel when they look at the budget. You can give your explanation right in your application or on a sheet attached to your budget. If we have questions about your budget, we will let you know.
We understand that it is not always easy to meet our requirements and that you may not have access to a lawyer to help you. We will try to help you complete your application.
We can photocopy the documents you need to include with your application and return them, if you cannot pay for copying.
If you are having any difficulty, please call us at (204) 942-0022, or call us toll free at 1-866-942-002.
Provide estimates of all hours, fees, and disbursements to be associated with the case or project.
Applicants are expected to contribute to the costs of client or pro bono work. Include in kind contributions such as the value of time spent on the case by a legal committee or board staff, co-ordinating time, etc. In addition, the difference between the CCP and lawyer's hourly rates should be calculated as a pro bono contribution by the lawyer and/or contribution by the client, if paid by them.