January, 2018 Archives – Slaw
Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for January, 2018

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. Maclean v. The Barking Frog, 2013 HRTO 630

[2] The facts of the case before me are relatively straightforward. The applicant is a young man who lives in London, Ontario. Late in the evening on September 6, 2012, he and some friends went to a local bar, The Barking Frog, and approached the doorman to inquire as to the cover charge. . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

CanniMed Sues Aurora Cannabis for $725,000,000

2018 began with a bang in the Canadian cannabis industry.

After the markets closed this past Friday, January 12, 2018, CanniMed Therapeutics Inc. (“CanniMed”), announced that it had commenced a lawsuit against Aurora Cannabis Inc. (“Aurora”) and a number of large CanniMed shareholders.

In the announcement, CanniMed indicated that the claim was for $725 million in damages resulting from the defendants’ (alleged) “unlawful actions that have negatively affected the appreciation of the value of common shares of CanniMed and prevented CanniMed from pursuing alternative change of control transactions for the benefit of the CanniMed shareholders.”

While the press release contained . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment

What Lawyers Need to Know About Blockchain

As I am writing this, one bitcoin is traded at about USD$17,600. In 2013, bitcoin traded at about USD$100. I thought it was a scam at the time and did not buy any. Since then I’ve changed my mind and started thinking, writing, and building about and around bitcoin and other blockchain technologies. It helped that I am both a computer programmer and a lawyer and that I had economics training. So if you are a lawyer and you missed the bitcoin rush but interested in catching up in your knowledge, read on.

Bitcoin is one way of using a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology, Practice of Law

Pulling the Plug on Big Tech

One of the biggest changes the technological revolution has given rise to is the rise of the dominant business model of providing free services to people in exchange for an extraordinary wide licence to exploit their data. There is a cost to us that we don’t see, but we are starting to see that it is having a large and incremental impact on our communities, our societies, and our lives. The “Big Tech” digital gatekeepers such as Facebook, Google, Snapchat, etc. refine and exploit our data and have by now laid waste to the advertising multiverse and turned that once . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

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. Eloise Gratton 2. Barry Sookman 3. Legal Post Blog 4. Canadian Combat Sports Law Blog 5. The Court

Eloise Gratton
VTech Data Breach Enforcement Actions – Guidance for Data Security and Privacy Law Compliance

The January 2018 OPC finding and settlement of VTech data breach enforcement actions

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Keeping Kitchen on the Bench

Late last year, with the appointment of Sheilah Martin to the Supreme Court of Canada, Penny Collenette of University of Ottawa Law reflected in the Toronto Star on whether we appreciate our Supreme Court justices enough,

…it is not uncommon for justices to retire from the bench before their retirement date. The case load and the isolation of the position can be wearing. Working intensely with eight colleagues from different backgrounds and different regions of the country in an austere setting can cause friction.

She refers to a new book by Prof Backhouse, A Life, which covers the life . . . [more]

Posted in: 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.

FISCALITÉ : L’article 1138 paragraphe 4 de la Loi sur les impôts ne distingue pas les «opérations intervenues entre la société de personnes et ses membres» selon qu’elles sont de nature courante ou en capital; les éléments d’actif qui peuvent être retranchés en vertu du paragraphe 3 b) in fine . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Evidence Versus Prediction

What is the point of all that time-consuming and expensive study of and training in law, jurisprudence and rational thinking if, once into the real world, it is all thrown aside in favour of feelings and emotions, fairground fortune-telling, astrology, belief in the power of positive thinking and gambling like a sad addict?

It seems to me that people attempting to influence serious lawyers or sell to them should realise that the latter are sometimes cautious and risk-aware for the very good reason that they are supposed to rely primarily on evidence and logic before making judgments. While, obviously, the . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Seeing (And Feeling) the Family Justice System Through the Eyes of the Therapy Dog

On behalf of the BC Family Justice Innovation Lab, I’m lucky enough to be part of a team that is working with families and family-serving agencies and services in Kamloops BC to improve the family justice system. We call the initiative “Pathfinder” and it is a collective of people, organizations and government supported by Access to Justice BC. We are using a human-centred service design approach that tries to see the system from the perspective of the families who are transitioning through separation and divorce. I hope to share more about this fascinating initiative in a future post. . . . [more]

Posted in: Dispute Resolution

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 Vader, 2018 ABQB 1

[21] Applying that test to this case, leads to these conclusions. In this case, the evidence as found by the trial judge supported the inference that the Accused possessed both items as weapons. Again, on the evidence found by the trial judge, the possibility that the items were possessed for a non-violent use was not . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Beware the Legal Precedent

Any legal tech company or firm that tries to systematize legal agreements have faced the challenge of finding that perfect agreement as the precedent for automation. That perfect agreement, be it shareholder agreement, employment agreements, or a master service agreement that all lawyers can agree on, that will be the perfect epitome of that agreement. Without such a thing, firms and legal technology companies alike are left with little hope of standardizing and automating a key legal task: the drafting of legal agreements.

There are many reasons law firms and legal tech companies would want to identify a model agreement: . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

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

A New Way to Look at Law Firm Marketing Plans
Sandra Bekhor

You’ve been hemming and hawing about whether or not it would be worthwhile to develop a marketing plan for your firm. Meanwhile, there’s been no change to the status quo, even though you’re not actually satisfied that you’re meeting your practice goals. Well, here’s a new way to look at the problem. …

Writing

Miscellaneous Little Things

. . . [more]
Posted in: Tips Tuesday