STC Framework for Recovery: Legal and Clerks Services

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Restoring Services

Under the STC Framework for Recovery the City is using a risk-based approach to guide decisions for resumption of services and reopening of facilities. Each City service has been assessed based on the criteria of safety, feasibility and community impact.

  • Safety: Can the service be delivered safely? Can the service be modified to achieve safety in delivery?
  • Feasibility: What is the cost associated with safely delivering the service? Is it fiscally responsible to expend those financial resources?
  • Community Impact: How does this service and related cost fit in the larger context of recovery for the community? Will it serve a broad section of the community? Is the service available through other partners?

Based on these criteria some Legal and Clerks Services were initially suspended during the initial response to COVID-19. Most services are once again being offered, albeit in a modified format as the City advances through Stage 1 of its recovery framework.

Given current staffing levels there is the potential for the timelines outlined below to changed based on demand and other factors.

Current Service Level: Stage 3

Please continue reading for a complete breakdown of Legal and Clerks Services currently being offered, and their method of delivery, during Stage 2 of the STC Framework for Recovery. Click the links for more information on service delivery procedures and processes. Please note, with staffing limitations and enhanced safety protocols service delivery may not meet usual timelines.

With many staff working from home there can be delays in accessing voicemails and documents. For the most timely response email is the preferred method of communication.

Legal Services

  • Claims: accepted online, by mail, or via the City Hall James Street entrance drop box
  • Noise Complaints: written letters for persistent noise complaints accepted by mail or via the City Hall James Street entrance drop box

Clerks Services


Legal and Clerks Services: Recovery by Stage

Aligning with the Province of Ontario, and guided by the recommendations of Niagara Region Public Health, recovery efforts will roll out across three initial stages while the risk of COVID-19 remains in our community. The fourth, and final stage, represents a time when a vaccine has been administered or COVID-19 is deemed to no longer pose a risk.

Stage 1

Stage 1 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered in altered format; civil marriage ceremonies suspended; public counter closed; Council meetings continue electronically

Stage 2

Stage 2 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered; potential that civil marriage ceremonies resume based on Provincial direction; public counter open; Council meetings continue electronically

Stage 3

Stage 3 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered; potential that civil marriage ceremonies resume based on Provincial direction; public counter open; Council meetings return to altered in-person format based on Provincial direction if possible

Stage 4

Stage 4 of Recovery Plan


Legal and Clerks Services return to pre-COVID-19 levels of service


Restoring Services

Under the STC Framework for Recovery the City is using a risk-based approach to guide decisions for resumption of services and reopening of facilities. Each City service has been assessed based on the criteria of safety, feasibility and community impact.

  • Safety: Can the service be delivered safely? Can the service be modified to achieve safety in delivery?
  • Feasibility: What is the cost associated with safely delivering the service? Is it fiscally responsible to expend those financial resources?
  • Community Impact: How does this service and related cost fit in the larger context of recovery for the community? Will it serve a broad section of the community? Is the service available through other partners?

Based on these criteria some Legal and Clerks Services were initially suspended during the initial response to COVID-19. Most services are once again being offered, albeit in a modified format as the City advances through Stage 1 of its recovery framework.

Given current staffing levels there is the potential for the timelines outlined below to changed based on demand and other factors.

Current Service Level: Stage 3

Please continue reading for a complete breakdown of Legal and Clerks Services currently being offered, and their method of delivery, during Stage 2 of the STC Framework for Recovery. Click the links for more information on service delivery procedures and processes. Please note, with staffing limitations and enhanced safety protocols service delivery may not meet usual timelines.

With many staff working from home there can be delays in accessing voicemails and documents. For the most timely response email is the preferred method of communication.

Legal Services

  • Claims: accepted online, by mail, or via the City Hall James Street entrance drop box
  • Noise Complaints: written letters for persistent noise complaints accepted by mail or via the City Hall James Street entrance drop box

Clerks Services


Legal and Clerks Services: Recovery by Stage

Aligning with the Province of Ontario, and guided by the recommendations of Niagara Region Public Health, recovery efforts will roll out across three initial stages while the risk of COVID-19 remains in our community. The fourth, and final stage, represents a time when a vaccine has been administered or COVID-19 is deemed to no longer pose a risk.

Stage 1

Stage 1 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered in altered format; civil marriage ceremonies suspended; public counter closed; Council meetings continue electronically

Stage 2

Stage 2 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered; potential that civil marriage ceremonies resume based on Provincial direction; public counter open; Council meetings continue electronically

Stage 3

Stage 3 of Recovery Plan


Legal Services: Claims and persistent noise complaints continue to be accepted
Clerks Services: Licensing, burial permits, marriage licences continue to be offered; potential that civil marriage ceremonies resume based on Provincial direction; public counter open; Council meetings return to altered in-person format based on Provincial direction if possible

Stage 4

Stage 4 of Recovery Plan


Legal and Clerks Services return to pre-COVID-19 levels of service


If you have any questions not addressed here or via the links above don't hesitate to reach out, leave a question below and our Legal and Clerks Staff will do their best to respond as soon as possible.

Legal and Clerks Services Recovery Q & A

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    is there an update on the city's commissioning services? When can we expect this service to be restored to the citizens of St Catharines?

    gloroia Asked about 2 months ago

    That's an excellent question thanks for reaching out. Residents will once again be able to access commissioning services via the Citizens First desk, by appointment only, starting on Aug. 10. Bookings are now open for appointments, head over to stcatharines.ca/CitizensFirst for more information and to book a time.

    All the best

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    Hi, there, can I know when the Inside inspections of occupied dwellings will resume? Thank you.

    chrisyang1984 Asked 2 months ago

    Hey Chris,

    Thanks for reaching out. Currently we are still setting timelines for the resumption of inspections of occupied dwellings. It will take place sometime during Stage 3 of the STC Framework for Recovery, please note the stages of the City's recovery plan does not neccesarily coincide with the Province's recovery stages. If you have a question related to a specific complaint you have filed, please call Citizens First at 905.688.5600 to inquire about an exact timeline for your specific issue.