Canada’s online legal magazine.

Monday’s Mix

Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canada’s award­-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from more than 80 recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.

This week the randomly selected blogs are 1. Condo Adviser 2. Family LLB 3. Canadian Privacy Law Blog 4. National Magazine 5. Michael Spratt

Condo Adviser
This is What the New Condo Tribunal May Look Like

There is still a fair bit of mystery surrounding the new Condo Tribunal, despite the fact that it is

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Earlscourt Legal Press at 20

One that got away

In my time at Carswell (now Thomson Reuters) I took a very aggressive approach to product development and was never very happy when an author signed with another publisher. Even more distressing was a decision by an author to go his or her own way and self publish a title that was originally published by Carswell. I always believed that publishing with an well established major legal publisher was the key to acceptance by the legal community and the key to commercial success. I was wrong.

One request by an author for the return of publishing . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Summaries Sunday: SOQUIJ

Every week we present the summary of a decision handed down by a Québec court provided to us by SOQUIJ and considered to be of interest to our readers throughout Canada. SOQUIJ is attached to the Québec Department of Justice and collects, analyzes, enriches, and disseminates legal information in Québec.

FAILLITE ET INSOLVABILITÉ : Les fiducies présumées créées aux termes de la Loi sur les régimes complémentaires de retraite, de la Loi de 1985 sur les normes de prestation de pension et de la Pension Benefits Act de Terre-Neuve-et-Labrador ne sont pas applicables à une restructuration effectuée aux termes . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Good Old Hyperlinks

By the time I was figuring out my stance on artificial intelligence, the legal tech talk had already moved on to blockchain. So I decided to write about something even more outdated – hyperlinks.

Links are the backbone of (legal) information systems

In research information systems we use citation information heavily. In the legal field, the cited-citing connections allow us to group documents into smaller universes. This feature of legal information is being exploited by virtually all providers for use in hyperlinking, to create citators, to provide the ability to note-up documents, and to rank search results. Citations can be . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

Quebec’s Religious Neutrality of the State Bill Passed

An amended version of Bill 62, An Act to foster adherence to State religious neutrality and, in particular, to provide a framework for religious accommodation requests in certain bodies to foster respect for religious neutrality of the state and aimed in particular to frame requests for religious accommodations in certain organizations passed third reading on October 18, 2017, with a vote of 66-51. It is now awaiting royal assent to become law. . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Miscellaneous, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

On the LSUC Dialogue on Licensing, Pt 2: Where Is Access to Justice?

This blogpost addresses a second shortcoming in the foundational framing and materials for the Law Society of Upper Canada’s unfolding Dialogue on Licensing. In Part 1, I argued that the initial arguments and subsequent materials that have framed the Dialogue do not provide a clear or compelling demonstration of a ‘need for change’ in the current system for licensing of lawyers in Ontario. In this Part 2, I argue that a further shortcoming is a failure to adequately acknowledge the relevance of the ongoing inaccessibility of justice in Ontario. Proper recognition of access to justice issues could provide the . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Revisiting the Case for Project Management in Legal Practice

I hesitate to write further about project management in legal practice because there has been so much said about it, but I just finished my exam to be a “Project Management Professional” (PMP), and I want to share some thoughts on why it’s a good fit for legal practice and how it fits into legal information work.

There are many “projects” in law offices or libraries—offices get moved, IT systems get upgraded, and new systems generally get rolled out periodically, but those kinds of projects are not the reason I think it’s worth talking about project management in legal practice . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and which French-language case have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

For this last week:

1. Zheng v Your New Car Calgary Inc, 2015 ABQB 121

[17] The Plaintiff refers to Bhasin v. Hrynew, 2014 SCC 71 (CanLII), 2014 Carswell Alta 2046 (S.C.C.), Spartek Systems Inc. v. Brown, 2014 Carswell Alta 1496, (Q.B.), and Tirecraft ( supra). Bhasin deals with the duty of good faith in contractual dealings. The latter two cases provide some guidelines . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Tips Tuesday

Here are excerpts from the most recent tips on SlawTips, the site that each week offers up useful advice, short and to the point, on research, writing, and practice.

Practice

New Lawyers: Document All Client Interactions
Ian Hu

New lawyers, I hope this tip will follow you well for your whole career. Begin doing this now and do it every time, to the point where it becomes a habit. It will both help your practice and protect you in the event of a malpractice claim. …

Research & Writing

Keep Your Cultural References Current and Universal
Neil Guthrie

This

. . . [more]
Posted in: Tips Tuesday

Technology Remains an Afterthought for Many Within the Legal System

Back in late September, the Court of the Future Network, in partnership with the Institut des hautes études sur la justice and the Cyberjustice Laboratory, organised its annual Court tour which – this year – took place in California, home of Silicon Valley and many technological innovators. For this very reason, the tour took a technological turn and focussed on some of the key technological issues confronting courts, such as:

  • The paperless courtroom: digital documents and evidence display
  • Cyber security
  • Immersive video-conferencing
  • Integrated courtroom management
  • Social media for courts
  • Remote interpreting
  • Online Dispute Resolution and Artificial Intelligence

The purpose of . . . [more]

Posted in: Dispute Resolution

Monday’s Mix

Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canada’s award­-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from more than 80 recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.

This week the randomly selected blogs are 1.Environmental Law and Litigation 2. Startup Source 3. University of Alberta Faculty of Law Blog 4. Eloise Gratton 5. Barry Sookman

Environmental Law and Litigation
Teck Coal Fined $1,425,000

On October 5, 2017 Teck Coal Limited (“Teck”) in British Columbia court pled guilty to three counts of

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Are Components of Competence

What does it mean to be a lawyer?

Is it to possess an encyclopedic knowledge the law? To use this knowledge to make money? Is being a lawyer simply just another way to make money (as some who correctly identify the lack of business skills among lawyers as one of the major challenges for innovation or reform point out)?

What differentiates the law from other businesses are the professional responsibilities imposed on a lawyer, through the Model Code of Professional Conduct and its implemented versions across Canada. Some of these responsibilities, such as the duty to the court and to . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Justice Issues