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Use Your Words

Nostalgia title for this post – I can’t tell you the number of times I said to the now grown, employed and, after this evening, all moved out on their own, Mireau Giggles, “Use your words”. Actually, it wasn’t too often come to think of it, but as you read the phrase you may hear your mother or fathers voice. Use your words is a more recent theme as well. Yesterday, I was delighted to share some tips for deploying knowledge management initiatives in mid-sized law firms with a group of engaged participants from the BCLMA KM Subsection. My presentation . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information: Information Management

Be Careful of Being Too Critical of the Trial Judge

In an appeal, everyone who has lost a case has sometimes felt the urge to viscerally complain about some aspect of the decision.

A recent decision of the Quebec Court of Appeal reminds us of the importance of making tempered criticism of the trial judge. Overstated criticism can even affect the overall credibility of an argument. In Dunkin Brands Canada Ltd. v. Bertico Inc., the Court of Appeal began its reasons with a dissection of the language used by the appellant in the factum, referring to “gross errors of law”, evidence that was “almost completely ignored” and “blatant” mistakes . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

LSUC’s Vexing Voting Scheme

As a recent call, I first approached this year’s LSUC bencher election with a kind of trepidation that I remember from student politics. But while the stakes have grown and the candidates improved, the voting system itself feels like a step in the wrong direction. Under this system, each voter may vote for up to 40 candidates from a pool of 95. While a few seats are filled based on the votes cast in each region, most benchers are chosen by voters across the province as a whole. This process burdens voters, hinders meaningful choices, and makes campaigning more . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

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 technology, research and practice.

Research

Plan Ahead
Shaunna Mireau

Yesterday at Slaw, I wrote about preparedness. Today’s Tip is to be perfectly prepared before you start your legal research question. I think that there are two steps to perfect legal research preparedness. Please comment if you agree or disagree! …

Practice

Use Evernote to Capture Your Tweets
David Bilinsky

Having just returned from ABA TECHSHOW in Chicago my mind is buzzing with everything that . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

Preservation Week: Pass It On!

The American Library Association has declared the week of April 26-May 2 to be Preservation Week. In recognition of this event, I thought I’d take the opportunity to present Slaw’s readers with an overview of some of the large-scale partnerships, projects and initiatives working to preserve our print heritage, particularly in law. As you’ll see, there’s lots going on, though Canada’s barely at the party.

Centre for Research Libraries, JSTOR and the JSTOR Print Archive

One of the leaders in developing and encouraging collaborative partnerships for the digitization and preservation of our print heritage is the Center for Research . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Inside the Lawyer’s Mind: Urgency

Following up on his previous posts on lawyers’ personality traits (autonomy and skepticism), Ian Hu (practicePRO and Claims Prevention Counsel at LAWPRO) discusses “urgency”, which measures a lawyer’s need to get things done and degree of impatience.

Consultant Dr. Larry Richard states in his LAWPRO article that such lawyers are more likely to finish others’ sentences, jump to conclusions, and be impulsive. . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Is Digitization Preservation?

That was the question that welcomed us on the morning of Day 2 at the law repositories conference in Williamsburg, Virginia. This session was billed as a “debate” between Sharon Bradley, University of Georgia School of Law, and Beth Williams, Louisiana State University Law Center, but it turned out that the two speakers didn’t really have much to disagree on; they both considered digitization a form of preservation.

Bradley stressed the need for libraries to get started. “Digitization can’t wait,” she said, “your books are deteriorating.” She sees digitization as a way to both protect the physical . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management

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 sixty 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. Clio Blog  2. FamilyLLB 3. Youth and Work  4. Blogue du CRL  5. Canadian Legal History Blog

Clio Blog
Three Cybersecurity Safeguards for Law Firms

Cybersecurity is big worry for law firms. Confidential information is entrusted to law firms by their clients, and hackers are starting to notice. Law . . . [more]

Posted in: Monday’s Mix

What Do You Get When You Cross a Puppy Video With Downton Abbey? a Champion.

As a small business owner, I seek out and use tools to help with efficiencies – one of which is an online invoicing system, FreshBooks. I’m nothing more than a happy customer with a story to tell about how they engaged with and dazzled me.

Like many lawyers, billing is my least favourite activity. After much belly-aching, whining and sniveling with a colleague, I was referred to an online invoicing system that made this dreaded time-consuming task a little easier, and I’m now well underway.

On one particular recent evening, I settled in to start billing. All my billable time . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Law Graduates Still Struggling in Job Market

An editorial in today’s New York Times highlights the plights of law school graduates in the U.S.,

About 20 percent of law graduates from 2010 are working at jobs that do not require a law license, according to a new study, and only 40 percent are working in law firms, compared with 60 percent from the class a decade earlier. To pay the bills, the 2010 graduates have taken on a variety of jobs, some that do not require admission to the bar; others have struck out on their own with solo practices. Most of the graduates have substantial student

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

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.

PÉNAL (DROIT) : La version anglaise de l’article 439.1 du Code de la sécurité routière est la plus claire et est celle qu’il faut privilégier; en outre, elle n’exige pas que l’appareil soit «tenu en main», mais simplement tenu («holding»).

Intitulé : Pedneault-Turmel c. Directeur des poursuites criminelles et pénales, . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Old Wine in New Bottles

Borrowing a well-worn title for this post seemed appropriate. I trust Milton Freidman, Noam Chomsky, the Pacific Lutheran University Wind Ensemble, or the countless others who have used the title before me won’t mind.

I’m spending my Saturday cleaning up and organizing a 4-year accumulation of papers, ideas, knick-knacks and other items that have marked my time at CanLII. To keep me company, I needed to select just the right musical mix and I’m very happy to have set the dial on Songza’s “funky” mood channel. The music offers the ideal groove for the act of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice