Canada’s online legal magazine.

‘Justice Doit Être Ouvert Vers La Société’

This was the core message in the opening address of minister Mamadou Konaté to the first conference of public prosecutors of Mali held under the theme ‘the public ministry for public action’ early November. ‘You are’, he said to the prosecutors, ‘a key advocate of the public interest and an advance post into society for justice.’ Minister Konaté wants this conference to take place every year – a gathering at which to reflect on standing up for the public interest and better serving the citizens of Mali.

He is an impressive and hugely driven figure: a lawyer with more than . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

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. Robeside Assistance  2. IFLS Osgoode 3. Combat Sports Law  4. University of Alberta Faculty of Law Blog  5. Clio Blog

Robeside Assistance
Upcoming Research Training

We’re busy planning our training for this year, and are happy to announce the following upcoming sessions are now open for registration! . . . [more]

Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Orthodox Jews in Civil Legal Disputes in Canada

Orthodox Jews are no strangers to court in Canada. We have them to thank for the seminal s. 2(a) case in Syndicat Northcrest v. Amselem and the infamous “ghet” case in Bruker v. Marcovitz (where arguably only one party was observant).

Civil disputes between Orthodox Jews are less prevalent though, in part given a perceived belief by some that it is prohibited. Consider Maimonides’ (Rambam) statement in Hilchos Sanhedrin 26:7 in the 12th c. CE,

Whoever has his case judged by non-Jewish laws or courts, even if their laws are the same [as the Torah]… It is as if he

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

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 tenue d’un nouveau procès est ordonnée dans le cas de l’accusé, reconnu coupable de menaces de causer la mort ou des lésions corporelles aux journalistes syriens pro-el-Assad et d’avoir conseillé à autrui de commettre un meurtre — qui n’a pas été commis — en raison d’un . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

New Minister, Same Focus?

Outgoing Minister John McCallum received a standing ovation at the CBA conference for immigration lawyers in 2016. It was evident from his keynote address and from fielding questions, that he understood key issues and he had a plan for fixing some of the problems. His leadership at the department has been brief but they have managed to accomplish significant milestones. As of 10 Jan 2017, we have a new Minister, the Honourable Ahmed D. Hussen. The questions become: will this disruption in the department cause further delays to the proposed changes? And, will Minister Hussen change the focus of . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Legal Information

Subscribing to Open Access for Research and Scholarship

Among those of trying to imagine an alternative economic arrangement for scholarly publishing that will result in public access to research and scholarship, the journal subscription has become seemingly immovable impediment to the wider distribution of this form of intellectual property. This had led me to do a bit of historical digging into the commercial transaction of the subscription, as part of a larger project on learning’s role in the formation of intellectual property concept over many centuries.

I have come to discover that subscriptions were first used to raise money for scholarly publishing in the early 17th century. The . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Cannabis Legalization Report

On November 30, 2016, the Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation released their final report which contains more than 80 recommendations to governments on how to better promote and protect public health and safety, especially among young Canadians. Particularly, the Task Force recommends: establishing a minimum age of access and restrictions on advertising and promotion; well-regulated production, manufacturing and distribution that can displace the illegal market; and that governments educate Canadians about the new system to improve the public’s understanding of cannabis, including risks such as impaired driving, for example.

Note that the Task Force prefers to use the . . . [more]

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

A Modern Associate Manifesto (Beta)

A spectre is haunting law firms — the spectre of #NewLaw.

There are three things every law firm associate hates: long hours, working on weekends, and their boss. Oh, you think your junior does not hate you? Oh, ok.

Here is the low-down on the traditional law firm:

1) Partners who own the firm make money by selling associates’ labour.

2) Partners sell associates’ labour by billing clients by the hour.

3) Partners pay associates’ fixed salaries regardless of overtime (but they do, sometimes, pay bonuses).

4) At least in Ontario, Canada, statutory employment standards with respect to hours, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology, Practice of Law

Electronic Filing: Can We File Pleadings Electronically in Ontario?

In Ontario some small claims pleadings can be filed electronically.

In December 2016, Regulation 487/16:Rules of Civil Procedure,
filed December 23, 2016 under the Courts of Justice Act was approved.

The Regulation speaks to, among other things, electronic filing:

ELECTRONIC FILING OF ORIGINATING PROCESS FOR ACTION

14.04 (1) A statement of claim (Form 14A (general) or 14B (mortgage actions – foreclosure)) or a notice of action (Form 14C) may be filed electronically, if the statement of claim or notice of action may, under rule 13.1.01, be filed in a court location for which the software authorized by the

. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology

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. Vanshaw Enterprises Ltd v Mayfield Investments Ltd, 2016 ABQB 619

[25] The landlord argues forcefully that the missing schedule is a red herring. The obligation to pay rent was not subject to schedule “A”, and furthermore the tenant, through at least two different representatives, was on-site during the entire construction period. They knew what was being built. They had access to . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Will Your New Year’s Resolution Be to Be More Organized and Productive?

I usually pledge to be more organized, but that goal gets lost quickly in the paperwork surrounding my desk and the messages clogging my email. Very recently I participated in an American Association of Law Libraries webinar on getting control of email. I was one of the many participants who had to confess to having over 1,000 emails in my inbox. And I was told by the presenter Randall Dean that the average person spends about two hours a day dealing with email and checks email up to 20 times per day. Dean is the author of a 2009 book, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

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.

Research & Writing

Beginnings and Endings
Neil Guthrie

Openings and closing of business correspondence, that is. My father, an old-fashioned lawyer if there ever was one, once said there are only two ways to start and close a business letter: either Dear Sir/Yours faithfully or Dear Mr So-and-so/Yours truly, depending on one’s level of acquaintance with the recipient. (And not very truly: one is true or one is not, no . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday