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Archive for ‘Education & Training’

Clio Conference More Than Food Trucks and Yoga

When my company started working with Clio back in 2008, I had a gut feeling they were onto something. But frankly, I never would have predicted the immense success this cloud-based software start-up would see over the next six years. Even without my admitted bias, I think most would agree that today, Clio has evolved into a major player in the legal software sector and one of the most engaged companies within the North American legal community. And by many accounts, they’re also the brains behind one of the most unconventional and enjoyable legal conferences we’ve seen to date. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Miscellaneous

Litigation Coaching by Judges

We often speak of litigation coaching for clients as a form of unbundled services, as one of the new frontiers for providing cost-effective legal services. But I’ve also identified the challenges that young lawyers have in developing the practical skills in litigation, especially given the strong emphasis in the system to resolve issues outside of the courtroom.

At the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) Canadian Legal Conference in St. John’s, Newfoundland this weekend, I had the opportunity to speak in greater depth with some vendors and discovered a product of interest.

Taran Virtual Associations, a domestic legal outsourcing company who . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Practice of Law: Practice Management

Final CBA Futures Report Is Now Available

2 years in the making.

7 key findings.

22 recommended actions.

Those are the numbers behind the CBA’s Futures: Transforming the Delivery of Legal Services in Canada report, released today.

The initiative was established in 2012 to “examine the fundamental changes facing the Canadian legal profession and to help lawyers understand and respond to those changes.”

The 106-page report identifies seven key findings, the result of thousands of hours of work through commissioned research and extensive online and in-person consultations with “a broad cross-section of lawyers, clients, law students, and other legal stakeholders,” and in-depth interviews with selected innovators. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Competence for the Low-Tech Lawyer

Is saying no to technology even an option for lawyers in modern practice? The Federation of Law Societies of Canada’s Model Code of Professional Content defines competence as follows:

3.1-1 1 “Competent lawyer” means a lawyer who has and applies relevant knowledge, skills and attributes in a manner appropriate to each matter undertaken on behalf of a client and the nature and terms of the lawyer’s engagement, including:

(j) pursuing appropriate professional development to maintain and enhance legal knowledge and skills; and (k) otherwise adapting to changing professional requirements, standards, techniques and practices.

If lawyers do not have certain . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Practice of Law: Practice Management

Slaying the Internal Giants to Maximize Your Career

At the heart of ancient Palestine is the region known as the Shephelah, a series of ridges and valleys connecting the Judaean Mountains to the east with the wide, flat expanse of the Mediterranean plain. It is an area of breathtaking beauty, home to vineyards and wheat fields and forests of sycamore and terebinth. It is also of great strategic importance.

This is how Malcolm Gladwell begins his new book, released last fall, David and Goliath.

The Shephelah, Gladwell notes, was where John Hyrcanus of the Maccabees fought the Seleucid Empire (he calls “Syria”), before forcibly converting the inhabitants . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Identifying Extra Steps

I have been working with some advisors on a project to map a process that we think could use some improving. An aspect of this is identifying waste.It is an interesting exercise to think about how you do something and identify where waste occurs.

Slawyers will appreciate the acronym DOWNTIME to think about waste in their organizations.

D defects (mistakes that mean something has to be done over)
O over-production (printing 30 handouts for 20 people)
W waiting (delays in the ability to move on to the next step)
N non-utilized talent (both over qualified and under utilized)
T transportation . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training

What Access to Justice Can Look Like

In February 2011, Legal Help Centre (“LHC”) first opened its doors to the public. Since then, more than 5000 individuals have been served through the Centre’s drop-in clinics. The sole criteria to access LHC’s drop-in clinic services is household income <$50,000 per year, ensuring that those who are ineligible for Legal Aid but cannot afford private legal services have a place to go for information and support.

The LHC’s pro bono legal clinic model is unique in Canada in two key ways:

  • LHC was started by and continues to be supported by two universities – the University of Manitoba and
. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Justice Issues

Debt and Access to the Legal Profession

Today is the payment deadline for the $3,164 fee levied by the Law Society of Upper Canada to fund its controversial new Law Practice Program, an alternate pathway to licensing for those unable or unwilling to secure articles. Regular readers of Slaw will recall that when the fee was announced in February, law students rallied against it – a petition calling for a more just and equitable model of funding the experimental program garnered more than 800 signatures.

While a few sympathetic benchers spoke up at Convocation in favour of the petition, the Law Society took no action. The chair . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

#Cbafutureschat Recap: Law & Design

What if every law firm and court had a basement lab where developers and designers hung out and built solutions?

That was a question posed by host Margaret Hagan during Tuesday’s CBA Twitterchat on the topic of law and design.

Hagan, who works at Stanford’s d.school and will soon work at the university’s law school, focuses on bringing user-centred design to legal services.

One of the key findings of the CBA’s Legal Futures Initiative is that the client needs to become the centre of the legal universe if the profession is to maintain its relevance in the face of transformative . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology

Ethics and Civility in the Practice of Law

My colleague Greg Harding an active member of the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice. He recently alerted me to an upcoming half-day seminar taking place on Friday, September 26, 2014 titled Ethics and Civility in the Practice of Law. As the program describes, this session will address some tough questions:

Do the courts, and law societies have a role in regulating civility and, if so, how do their roles differ? What role is there for professional bar associations? What unique ethical and civility issues arise in the context of administrative proceedings? What special ethical and civility issues

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD

Facilitating

I attended a Stakeholder Consultation today for the Alberta Queen’s Printer. Our QP is asking questions of their wide variety of clients to learn where their investments in time and dollars are best spent. My post is not about the outcomes or input shared at that meeting but rather some observations about the excellent meeting facilitation that I observed.

According to Merriam-Webster, a facilitator is one that helps to bring about an outcome (as learning, productivity, or communication) by providing indirect or unobtrusive assistance, guidance, or supervision.

The session I attended was lead by Kim Ghostkeeper. Kim is . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training

SLA 2014 Awards: Bennett Jones Are Big Winners

This week I am at the SLA (Special Libraries Association) conference being held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This morning at the Bloomberg BNA SLA Legal Division Breakfast & Business Meeting, the following awards were given:

  •  The Bloomberg BNA Outstanding New Member Contribution award is presented to Christine DeLuca of Bennett Jones LLP in Toronto, ON, CA.
  • The Wolters Kluwer Law & Business Innovations in Law Librarianship award is presented to Zena Applebaum of Bennett Jones LLP in Toronto, ON, CA.
  • The Thomson Reuters Westlaw Award for Career Achievement award is presented to Tracy Maleeff of Duane Morris LLP in
. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Legal Information, Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Practice of Law: Practice Management