Practice of Law Archives – Slaw
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Archive for ‘Practice of Law’

Artificial Intelligence: What Is AI and Will It Really Replace Lawyers?

This article appeared in the February 2018 issue of LAWPRO Magazine.

If you scanned social media or the headlines in many online or print-based newspapers or magazines published in 2017, you were pretty much guaranteed to see posts and articles on artificial intelligence (AI).

Most of these articles suggest that AI is in the process of fundamentally changing our lives at work, home and play. And if you believe the comments in these articles, the good news is that we will have more free time to enjoy virtual-reality worlds and have our self-driving cars take us around the countryside. The . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Deloitte Class Action Indicative of Legal Future

Earlier this year, Justice Perell approved a replacement class representative in Sondhi v. Deloitte Management Services LP on a motion for what has already been an exhausting certification process in a class proceeding.

The matter involves a class, who although technically are lawyers, have not been considered as such by their employer or the parties procuring their services. These members typically consist of younger lawyers and new graduates who have been unable to otherwise find employment as lawyers in a traditional context.

I do know many of these young lawyers. I know that they are bright and talented, and would . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

HR and Payroll Related Measures in the 2018 Federal Budget

On February 27, 2018, the federal government tabled its 2018-19 budget, the third budget for the sitting liberal government. The 2018-19 budget focuses on gender equality, economic growth, job creation and a strong middle class.

In his budget speech, federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau stated, “The Canadian economy is doing well-remarkably well. Over the last two years, hard-working Canadians have created nearly 600,000 new jobs, most of them full-time. Unemployment rates are near the lowest levels we’ve seen in over 40 years.”

The updated fiscal 2018-19 forecasted deficit is $18.1 billion, improved from the fall economic statement estimate of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Tax Impacts on Female Self-Employed

When the federal government proposed changes on tax policies for private corporations last summer, some lawyers expressed significant concerns.

The Canadian Bar Association (CBA), the largest legal organization in Canada, launched a campaign against these measures. In one letter, as part of a coalition for small business tax, they stated,

These are not minor amendments, but are sweeping changes that will affect all sectors of Canada’s business community and we ask that you not move forward with these proposals. Instead, the organizations listed below stand ready to meet with you and your officials to offer our support and ideas for

. . . [more]
Posted in: Practice of Law

Outcomes From the Calgary Symposium on Children’s Participation in Justice Processes

Children’s Participation in Justice Process: Finding the Best Ways Forward was a two-day national symposium held in Calgary, Alberta on 15 and 16 September 2017 that brought together a broad, multidisciplinary spectrum of leading stakeholders to share information and dialogue about how the voices of children and youth are heard, how their interests are protected and how their evidence is received in justice processes. The symposium was preceded by a half-day conference on the fundamentals of family law in Canada on 14 September 2017, designed for mental health professionals and symposium participants who were not justice system professionals, intended to . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law

Cryptocurrencies, Discovery and Financial Statements

One of a family lawyer’s main duties is to have their client’s back when it comes to financial consequences of marriage and separation, whether it’s a cohabitation agreement, a trial, or an application to vary support because of a change of circumstances. Reasonable precautions to probe and investigate the parties’ financial affairs, including investments and business activities, are almost always required. And sometimes proactive measures are needed to protect assets pending distribution by agreement or court order.

The law has evolved, both substantively and procedurally, to equip lawyers with a variety of tools to ensure honest financial disclosure—from simple financial . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Perspectives on the Future of Law – How the Professional Should Respond to Major Disruptions

This article appeared in the February 2018 issue of LAWPRO Magazine.

The legal profession is in the midst of significant change, and is headed into a period where there will be even greater change. These changes are driven by disruptions that alter the very nature of how traditional legal services have been performed and provided to clients for decades. These disruptions include:

  • access to justice
  • client empowerment
  • technology
  • alternative legal service providers

This article will give some insights into these disruptors and suggest how members of the legal profession can respond to them.

What is a non-lawyer?

To start, a . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Cloud Data Should Stay Grounded in Border Searches

Crossing the American border with electronic devices has long been a concern for both the public and lawyers in Canada. Border officials have always had more power to inspect or search electronic devices than domestic police, but this has also raised some concerns for American citizens as well.

While the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), does not apply to data stored on a personal device, this information is still protected in the U.S. under the Fourth Amendment. The notable exceptions to this include search incident to arrest and border searches. The Supreme Court of the United States has justified this . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology

Welcome to 2018 With New Employment and Labour Law Rules and Obligations Across Canada

Welcome to 2018 and a load of new employment and labour law rules and obligations across Canada.

As most of you already know, a number of new or amended laws and regulations came into effect on January 1 or will come into force later in 2018 across Canada, including marijuana legalization and higher minimum wages in Ontario, Alberta and other jurisdictions. Here is a brief reminder of the new or amended rules you need to be aware of and implement to ensure compliance. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Spam, Cold Calls and Triage

We receive dozens of unsolicited messages everyday from people seeking help with immigration problems. Every case is different and there are certain situations where we are not the best representatives to assist. For those cases, we have contacts in other jurisdictions for referrals. As a boutique law firm, we also regularly make referrals to our colleagues who practice, for example, family law or criminal law. For the remaining contacts, we have developed three (3) methods to make sure that we are a good fit for the client and that it makes sense for us to help.

Triage

In a medical . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law: Practice Management

A Glance at ESA and OHSA Requirements Under Bill 148 With Implementation Dates

On November 27, 2017, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017 (Bill 148) received royal assent and is now law. Bill 148 makes significant amendments to Ontario’s Employment Standards Act, 2000, Labour Relations Act, 1995 and the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The amendments are significant and have various implementation dates. This article deals with providing a timeline for provisions in force from the date of assent to January 1, 2019 under Ontario’s Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) and the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA). Changes to the Labour Relations Act, 1995 will be dealt with in . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Book Review of the Mighty Hughes

A reader in search of a new book could be forgiven for taking a pass on The Mighty Hughes. After all, what could be interesting about the life and times of a saint who was neither mutilated nor martyred?

Such a reader should think again.

The story of the life of Ted Hughes QC, OC is a tale of aggressive virtue. His pursuit of honest outcomes and dishonourable individuals has brought him respect and fame throughout Canada. In the pages of Craig McInnes’s biography, Hughes is depicted as a heroic figure who has, at times, brandished the sword of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Practice of Law