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Archive for ‘Practice of Law’

Applying Artificial Intelligence in the “Legal Aid Space”

I’ve never been more optimistic more excited about where we’re going with technology than I am today. This is just an absolute, I mean, we’re in the middle of a revolution and I think it’s going to completely impact how we deliver legal services. And I actually think that in this space, in the nonprofit legal aid space, we’re going to make great strides in this, and kind of lead the way in many ways.”–IV Ashton


 

IV Ashton is a Chicago-based attorney and founder of LegalServer, a “web-based case management platform for the legal aid community.” . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice

SlawTips and Practice Management

It goes without saying that law school does not teach us how to run an office. For that, I have had to learn on the job, one step at a time. When I founded this firm 2 1/2 years ago, I blocked off Friday afternoons for managing the business end. Of course, the busier I got on the legal side, the more time I needed to spend on business tasks. Thankfully, there is no need to reinvent the wheel and there are many easy solutions out there for sole practitioners – once you find them. For office management and . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

October 1, 2017 and Upcoming Minimum Wage Increases

Five Canadian provinces are increasing the general minimum wage rate October 1, 2017 as follows: Alberta ($13.60), Manitoba ($11.15), Newfoundland and Labrador ($11.00), Ontario ($11.60) and Saskatchewan ($10.96). The general minimum wage rate increase results in corresponding increases to other rates in the respective provinces.

Note that British Columbia’s general minimum wage increased September 15, 2017 to $11.35 per hour. Other provincial minimum wage rates were also adjusted at that time. . . . [more]

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

A Sign of the Times

A new Practice Direction from Manitoba’s Court of Queen’s Bench reflects increasing acceptance of the fact that litigants without lawyers are no longer an anomaly in civil litigation. The notice sets out that contested motions and applications involving at least one self-representing litigant must be set for a case management conference before a contested hearing takes place. This is already the norm for contested motions in the Family Division of the Court of Queen’s Bench, regardless whether there is a self-represented party, but is new in the Civil Division.

Other than the procedural change, two specific aspects of the . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law

The Struggle Is Real

We’ve made great advances in recent years in Canada in examining mental health in the legal profession, and prior, in law school.

In large part this can be attributed to Orlando da Silva, former President of the Ontario Bar Association, who used his term as the head of the largest legal organization in Ontario to bring attention to his own personal plights. Da Silva was awarded the Law Society Medal last year for these contributions.

Similar conversations are occurring south of the border as well. One of the most prominent ones is a new series on Above the Law called . . . [more]

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

On the LSUC Dialogue on Licensing, Pt 1: Is There a Need for Change?

Over the summer months, the Law Society of Upper Canada has been conducting a Dialogue on Licensing to prompt information sharing, discussion, input and reflection on the future of the requirements for licensing of lawyers in Ontario. Based on materials disseminated as part of the Dialogue, a series of discussion sessions were held and summary reports released. Submissions were also invited through a broad call open into August. According to a late June update, the Professional Development and Competence Committee (PDCC) of the LSUC will spend the remainder of 2017 reviewing the input, with a view to producing . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Tribunal Addresses Disabled Employee Resignations

In addition to affirming that an employee’s resignation must be clear and unequivocal to be valid, this case tells us that employers do not have a greater onus when it comes to long-term disabled employees who resign. The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal did not accept the employee’s claim that it was unreasonable in the circumstances for her employer to conclude that she wished to resign without further inquiry. . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

The Authentic Lawyer?

There’s a bit of buzz in Winnipeg this week about the International Downtown Association’s 63rd annual conference taking place here. The theme of the conference is Authenticity, which seems apt in these days of fake news and fake nudes.

Living authentically is an ideal espoused by many authors and speakers in the self-improvement sector, whether that path to authenticity is found through meditation, spiritual transformation or some other means. The general idea is simply that an individual aspires to and works toward being the best possible version of themselves, with their interior self in alignment with their exterior . . . [more]

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

The Chronic Pain of Using Brain Imaging in Legal Proceedings

Aside from a robust knowledge in anatomy and physiology or radiation physics, there’s not much I can use my background in nuclear medicine technology in the practice of law. Which is why in 2009 I noted here the growing and emerging use of diagnostic imaging in sentencing and trials.

Since that time there has been quite a bit of developments in diagnostic imaging and its use in medico-legal work. One of the newest developments is its use for chronic pain. The economic costs of chronic pain are estimated to be over $600 billion in the U.S. Part of the challenge . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Technology

Privacy Information: Cookieless Identification and Tracking of Devices

This blog post is entirely written by Christina Catenacci, BA, LLB, LLM, for First Reference Talks. Christina is currently pursuing a PhD at the University of Western Ontario with a focus on privacy law.

On August 21, 2017, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada released an informative piece regarding cookieless identification and tracking of devices. Interestingly, there is a new technique called, “fingerprinting”, which can work to enable website operators, advertising companies, and other organizations to track users – even when they clear their cookies. The document explains the implications and what people can do to protect their . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet

Asking the Right Questions at the 2017 Isaac Pitblado Lectures

It is said that change is the one constant in life. While personally, I’ve no reason to doubt the truth of that statement, as a member of the legal profession for the past 20(+) years, I sometimes have questioned whether others in the profession would argue against it. We are a profession reliant upon precedent, adept at identifying and avoiding risk and often, slow to adapt to the changing world around us.

Taking on this inherent resistance to new ways of lawyering, I’ve heard Jordan Furlong ask his audiences some variant of the question: If you weren’t already doing it . . . [more]

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

Crossing Borders With Digital Devices

Lots of lawyers have been worried about having their digital devices inspected at the U.S. border in recent years, and more so under the current administration – but there are other countries that are not generally trusted either.

The New York City Bar Association has issued an ethics opinion telling lawyers they need to take special steps to protect confidential and privileged client information in such circumstances – possibly including using ‘burner’ phones or laptops (ones with no confidential info, and that the owner can burn or otherwise just throw away after coming back from the country in question).

The . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list