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Where Law, Information, and Technology Meet

Author: Stephen M Ahad, Program Lawyer, Osgoode Professional Development

The law is built on information. And with rapid advances in technology, the volume of legal information is immense and growing exponentially. It can be difficult to keep up. There are countless gigabytes of digital data on computers, phones, tablets, servers, and the Cloud, accessed anywhere and everywhere through the interface of a digital screen. Emails, text messages, and attachments are sent and replied to and forwarded hither and yon; electronic records are stored and deleted, sometimes following established protocols, often not. Technology evolves, and the hard drive of today soon becomes the floppy disk drive of tomorrow.

The law is not known as a particularly innovative field, by its very nature. It’s a system intended to deliver stability and predictability. But it is by no means immune to the technological changes sweeping society. Certain key attributes of litigation and transactional legal work have gone through great transformation in recent years, and practitioners will need to adapt to this technological evolution in order to thrive.

Meanwhile, an emerging duty to be technologically competent has been noted in many places recently, including the pages of SLAW. The New York Law Journal identified six areas of technological competence required for the legal professional of today: data security; the technology used to run a law firm and practice law; social media competence; technology used by clients to build products or offer services that lawyers have to defend; electronic discovery; and technology used to present information in court. (cite: Anthony E. Davis and Steven M. Puiszis, New York Law Journal, March 01, 2019). Whether this requirement is incorporated into the rules of professional regulators or not, everyone needs a modicum of technological know-how nowadays, and increasingly so in the future.

The Osgoode Certificate in E-Discovery, Information Governance and Privacy serves as a guide to the crossroads of law, information, and technology. It’s a unique program designed to help professionals navigate and organize the increasingly complex and sophisticated world of legal information management, while addressing the challenge of developing a technological skill-set that reflects the ongoing transformation of law and practice.

Over five days, you will learn the key knowledge and competencies you need when working in e-discovery, records management, information governance, privacy, confidentiality, cybersecurity, and the emerging realm of Artificial Intelligence in the legal context. Whether your work involves litigation, legal transactions, support, analytics, records management, or legal support, you need to know the latest tools, procedures, and protocols. In-house counsel must also be familiar with these subjects, which they may deal with on a daily basis. This intensive program will provide the opportunity for hands-on learning and interactive sessions and class discussions focusing on the practical.

Offered both in-person and online via webcast, the Certificate will be held from September 16 to 20. Led by Program Chair Susan Wortzman of MT>3 and an Advisory Board drawn from practice, industry, and government, the multidisciplinary faculty of experts will address a rich panoply of topics, including:

  • E-Discovery overview: legal and technology issues
  • Evidence: preserving, collecting, storing, and processing e-documents
  • How to conduct effective case assessments and project management
  • Hands-on demonstrations of the latest forensics and analytics tools
  • Privacy, confidentiality, cybersecurity, and AI issues in legal information
  • The struggle between privacy and data retention
  • Information governance strategies now and in the future
  • Electronic advocacy in courts and tribunals
  • Important developments in case law and legislation

Register now for this comprehensive program in technical competence in the legal sphere. If you are a new licensee or professional, you will receive 50% off the registration fee. We also have special rates for Government delegates. Financial assistance is also available; for more information, please contact financialaid-opd@osgoode.yorku.ca

To register or learn more about the program, please visit the program website. Eligible CPD Hours for Law Society of Ontario licensees are 34h 45m CPD (26h 30m Substantive; 7h 30m Professionalism; 45m EDI). To inquire about CPD credits available for other jurisdictions, please contact cpd@osgoode.yorku.ca.

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