Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for ‘Legal Information’

Québec National Assembly Guide on History of the Civil Code

The website of the Québec National Assembly has created a thematic guide to the history of the Civil Code of the province from its origins in France’s Napoleonic Code of 1804 t0 today.

The guide outlines the major amendments and repeals up to and including those affecting the new Civil Code of Quebec that came into force in 1994.

For each change, the guide provides a detailed historical description with associated documents (bills, parliamentary debates, briefs or “mémoires” submitted by stakeholders in front of parliamentary committees etc.)

All the documents mentioned are available from the legislative library of the National . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation

Petition to House of Commons to “Fix” Crown Copyright

University of Alberta Copyright Librarian Amanda Wakaruk is asking people to sign the petition she started to get the Canadian government to fix Crown copyright.

Her text has been shared widely in the past few days on social media and on various librarian discussion lists:

“Canada is one of many countries stating a commitment to Open Government. It is also, conversely, one of a decreasing number of countries to retain a legal provision that gives the government the sole right to reproduce and distribute works produced for public consumption. For example, the vast majority of federal US government works

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation

Table of Concordance for Ontario Child and Family Services Act and Bill 89

Prepared by Windsor Law Student Lois Boateng, this Table of Concordance sets out a side-by-side comparative view of Part III (Child Protection) of the Child and Family Services Act, RSO 1990, c C 11, and Part V (Child Protection) of Bill C-89, An Act to enact the Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2016, to amend and repeal the Child and Family Services Act and to make related amendments to other Acts (41st Parl, 2nd Sess) Ontario (2017).

A very helpful tool for anyone who is interested in quickly seeing the proposed changes to this Act. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Substantive Law: Legislation

The Case for Redesigning Caselaw

To a jurist or a legal draftsperson, caselaw probably looks like a reliable, elegant way to record what legislation really means, in context.

To a programmer, it looks like a collection of bugs, for a program that was badly written in the first place and isn’t being maintained by its authors any more.

The programmer then goes looking for the bug-tracker for the criminal code and there isn’t one. At this point their head explodes.

Introduction

When a statute fails to deal with an unexpected situation, the courts fix it. This is a lot like fixing bugs in programs, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing

2017 Law via the Internet Conference Call for Papers

The organizers of the 2017 Law via the Internet conference have posted a call for submissions.

The event takes place at the Rutgers Law School in Newark, New Jersey, October 19-21, 2017.

The conference brings together people from the Legal Information Institutes (LIIs) from different countries and continents that together form the Free Access to Law Movement.

The submission deadline for abstracts is July 30, 2017. Organizers are looking for papers on the following topics:

  • Development and Implementation of Standards for Preserving and Presenting Legal Information
  • New Initiatives in Free Access to Law
  • Technical initiatives and developments in
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Technology: Internet

Immigration Lawyers: Use Provincial Resources

This week is Bring a Buddy to a Section Meeting for CBA/MBA groups. For the fun of it, I attended my first meeting with the General Practitioners Section. Our resident research guru, Karen Sawatzky gave a lively and information presentation on services provided by the Law Society of Manitoba. These are free for members but the services are not widely advertised and, apparently, not widely known. Let’s fix that!

Caught in my immigration bubble, I did not expect to learn about useful services from a provincial service. I am so used to relying on our CBA Immigration listserv for . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Google’s Dominance Doesn’t Require Anti-Competition

Google permeates everything we do. Our society could be described as a “Google generation,” for better or worse.

Some suggest that Google undermines our democracy, specifically by fostering greater inequality and eroding our notions of privacy. Others point to Google’s potential role in fighting back against “fake news,” and the crucial role that flows of information and media play in a democracy.

Google’s market share in search engines in Canada is estimated between 60% to over 90%. It’s Google’s dominance in the market that has some concerned about the centralization of power and information flows.

The broader practices of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Technology

Canadian Association of Law Libraries Letter on Eliminating Print Version of Statutes of Canada

Connie Crosby, President of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL), has written a letter to The Honourable Judy M. Foote, Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada, explaining the many concerns law librarians have about the idea of discontinuing the paper publication of the annual Statutes of Canada.

The letter is in response to a CBC News report that the federal government might consider changes to legislation that requires that Canada’s annual laws be made available in print.

In her letter, Crosby calls on the government to take care before any move to a digital-only policy, in . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Legislation

University of Virginia Website on US Supreme Court Nominee Neil Gorsuch

The University of Virginia School of Law has launched the Gorsuch Project, a website devoted to the career of Neil Gorsuch, US President Donald Trump’s nominee to fill the vacancy left on the US Supreme Court by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016:

“Hearings on the nomination of the Honorable Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court are scheduled to begin March 20 and interest in the nominee’s judicial record is high. To assist researchers, we’re proud to announce the launch of the Neil Gorsuch Project, a website that assembles all of Gorsuch’s written opinions, as well

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Quebec Legal Info Service CAIJ Adds Commentary From McCarthy Tétrault

CAIJ, the Centre d’accès à l’information juridique (the network of courthouse law libraries associated with the Québec Bar Association), has signed resource sharing agreements with many major law firms in Québec that make their legal commentary freely available on the organization’s website.

This week, CAIJ announced that it will now feature texts written by lawyers from the firm of McCarthy Tétrault. This means there are 29 law firms that share material with CAIJ in English and French.

Their material will be added to a collection that already includes full-text commentary and textbooks including the Développements récents  (annual reviews of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

LII’s Thomas Bruce Testifies Before the Judiciary Committee

Thomas Bruce, Director of the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School, spoke before the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee specifically to the Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet who are exploring issues related to judicial transparency and ethics. Bruce mainly provides comments about PACER the “electronic public access service that allows users to obtain case and docket information online from federal appellate, district, and bankruptcy courts”.

The whole session was live streamed on February 14 and is a couple of hours long so I thought it might be useful to zoom in on . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

#Research4Refugees: A Cross-Canada Law Student Effort

An inspiring event began late last week and rose to a crescendo on Saturday: the law student-driven Research-a-thon for Refugees. The 12-hour distributed pro bono legal research marathon was kickstarted in a whirlwind of spark of initiative, quick communication, outreach, collaborative effort, and perhaps a bit of collective consciousness.

Volunteer law students receiving an immigration and refugee law overview from UVic Professor Donald Galloway

The goal of #Research4Refugees was to produce a collaboratively researched document for a Canadian NGO, focusing on interpretation and application of the US-Canada safe third country agreement for arriving refugees, on a project managed by . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Justice Issues, Legal Information: Libraries & Research