Canada’s online legal magazine.

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 Silicone 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

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.

VENTE : La somme à laquelle les acheteurs de pièces de navire ont droit en raison d’un bris prématuré causé par un vice caché est limitée à 78 900 $; en outre, c’est le régime de la responsabilité délictuelle de la common law qui s’applique au contrat visant la fourniture . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Summaries Sunday: Supreme Advocacy

On one Sunday each month we bring you a summary from Supreme Advocacy LLP of recent decisions at the Supreme Court of Canada. Supreme Advocacy LLP offers a weekly electronic newsletter, Supreme Advocacy Letter, to which you may subscribe. It’s a summary of all appeals and leaves to appeal granted, so you know what the S.C.C. will soon be dealing with (August 24 –October 13, 2017 inclusive).

Appeals

Aboriginal Law: Document Retention/Destruction
Canada (Attorney General) v. Fontaine, 2017 SCC 47 (37037)

The Indian Residential Schools Settlement records can be destroyed. Interpreting the Agreement is a question of mixed fact . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Compliment or Sexual Harassment: Where Do You Draw the Line?

Written wholly by Doug Macleod Employment and labour lawyer at MacLeod Law on First Reference Talks

Despite a number of legislative initiatives that are intended to reduce and ultimately eliminate sexual harassment in society, sexual harassment continues to be a problem in Ontario’s workplaces.

One of the more nuanced areas of sexual harassment law is what kind of language a male can direct towards a woman in the workplace. Sometimes there is a fine line between complimenting a female co-worker and sexually harassing her.

An occasional non-sexualized compliment is usually not a problem but a comment of a sexual nature . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

The ABCs of Client Classification

How can you save time and money marketing your law firm? Drop a few clients.

Yes, drop. Some lawyers are better than others at saying no to taking on certain clients. Some groups can more easily spell out the criteria for their ideal client than others. And some firms are better than others about enforcing client intake policies. But very few lawyers, practice groups, or firms have committed to regularly culling their client lists for The Clients Who Aren’t Worth the Trouble.

But how do you know who those clients are? That’s where client classification comes in. Classifying your clients . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Cars and the Data They Share

Anyone interested in cars and the data they will increasingly collect should read the article in the November Automobile magazine titled The Big Data Boom – How the race to monetize the connected car will drive change in the auto industry.

It talks about how much data might be generated (4,000 GB per day), how that sheer volume will be handled, and how it might be monetized. And the challenges of cybersecurity and privacy.

Auto makers are well aware of the privacy issues. Challenges will include how to deal with privacy laws that vary dramatically around the world. Will . . . [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. R. v. Lloyd, 2016 SCC 13

[1] Parliament has the power to proscribe conduct as criminal and determine the punishment for it, and judges have the duty to apply the laws Parliament adopts on punishment to offenders. But individuals are also entitled to receive, and judges have a duty to impose, sentences that are constitutional having regard to the circumstances of . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Women Know Who the Predators Are

In the past few years, sexual harassment allegations against several high-profile media executives have generated significant discussion, including on social media. Last week’s New York Times story titled “Decades of Sexual Harassment Accusations Against Harvey Weinstein” is no exception. My Twitter feed was alight with comments and commentary moments after the story was published. A couple of tweets in particular grabbed my attention:

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Ethics

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

Check the Source Law (Not the Consolidation)
Susannah Tredwell

If you’re having difficulty finding the amendments made to an act by another act, make sure you’re consulting the original act rather than the consolidation. Consolidations generally omit amendments to other acts. …

Writing

Just How Frequently Is That?
Neil Guthrie

Bi– H.W. Fowler refers in Modern English Usage to the ‘misshapen brood’ of bi– words that are . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday