(cf SCR Part 66A, rule 4; DCR Part 28C, rule 4)
(1) If satisfied that it is in the interests of the administration of justice, the court may, by order, refer a litigant to the registrar for referral to a barrister or solicitor on the Pro Bono Panel for legal assistance.
(2) For the purposes of subrule (1), the court may take into account--(a) the means of the litigant, and(b) the capacity of the litigant to obtain legal assistance outside the scheme, and(c) the nature and complexity of the proceedings, and(d) any other matter that the court considers appropriate.
(2A) The court may not refer a litigant for assistance under this rule if the litigant has obtained assistance under a previous referral at any time during the immediately preceding period of 3 years unless the court is satisfied that there are special reasons that justify a further referral.
(3) The power to refer may be exercised in the absence of the public and without any attendance by or on behalf of any person.
(4) If a litigant is referred for assistance under this rule, the registrar must attempt to arrange for legal assistance to be provided to the litigant by a barrister or solicitor on the Pro Bono Panel.
(4A) If the registrar is unable to arrange legal assistance for a litigant who is referred under this rule within 28 days after the litigant's referral, the registrar may make an order terminating the litigant's referral.
(5) The registrar may refer a litigant to a particular barrister or solicitor only if the barrister or solicitor has agreed to accept the referral.
(6) A referral to a barrister does not prevent a referral also being made to a solicitor and a referral to a solicitor does not prevent a referral also being made to a barrister.