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Archive for ‘Practice of Law’

A Monday Miscellany

Hats off to the judges present and past (four retired judges) of the Prince Edward Island Court of Appeal who are giving up evenings in November to provide educational sessions for islanders on PEI’s courts, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, public law, criminal law, civil law and family law. It will also include a tour of the Sir Louis Henry Davies Law Courts building where participants can see the courtrooms, holding cells, law library and public areas.

The free sessions will take place November 8, 15 and 22 starting at 6:45 p.m. and registration is limited to 50 people. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading: You might like..., Technology: Internet

Ontario Public Interest Articling Positions – Host Deadline October 24th

The Law Foundation of Ontario is helping to coordinate articling positions in the Public Interest community, in conjunction with Pro Bono Students Canada (PBSC). From the LFO’s information page:

The Law Foundation of Ontario (LFO) is pleased to announce that it is now accepting applications from prospective host organizations for its groundbreaking Public Interest Articling Fellowship Program for the 2013-14 articling period.

The Public Interest Articling Fellowship was conceived to meet both a significant need for legal assistance within the public interest community and to allow law students to gain valuable experience in public interest law. The program expands

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

BC Privacy Commissioner Releases Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks

The OIPC BC released Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks yesterday. The Guidelines were developed “to help organizations and public bodies navigate social media background checks and privacy laws.”

The Guidelines outline the privacy risks associated with the use of social media to screen and monitor current and prospective employees, volunteers and candidates, including:

The collection of potentially inaccurate personal information;

The collection of too much or irrelevant personal information;

The inadvertent collection of third-party personal information; and

The overreliance on consent for the collection of personal information that may not be reasonable in the circumstances.

The Guidelines also provide . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading: Recommended, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology: Office Technology

Law Firm Merger Mania

I’m sure most Canadians law firm denizens have heard about some of the latest firm merger news, but I thought it might be good to catch up with a few links to the news stories.

Macleod Dixon & Norton Rose

Probably the biggest news in Canada for some months now is Norton Rose. You may recall they merged in June with Ogilvy Renault to create Norton Rose OR in Canada. They now have plans to merge with 250 lawyer Canadian firm Macleod Dixon and will be rebranding the newly expanded Canadian arm as Norton Rose Canada. From the press . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

IRPP: No National Securities Regulator Needed

The Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP) released a study by Pierre Lortie today concluding that Canada does not need a national securities regulator. The report details how decentralization has allowed flexibility in the different provinces, allowing them to respectively adopt best practices, and finds a higher degree of performance as compared to other nations.

One notable finding was that Ontario is not a participant in the “passport” system, which allows dealers to register and companies to file prospectuses and have them apply in all other jurisdictions. The report strongly urges Ontario to join this system for it to . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Screening & Confidentiality v. Knowledge Sharing

This morning’s Intapp Law Firm Risk Management Blog features a piece I recently published in Managing Partner Magazine in London entitled: “Managing Screens,” which explores the tension between tightly controlling access to sensitive client (and firm) information and fostering internal sharing, which I characterize as: “the potential of exploiting collective professional knowledge.”

“What has changed is that, in the past decade, so-called ethical screens have proliferated within law firms. Ethical screens are what used to be called Chinese walls: institutional mechanisms combined with technological safeguards and personal undertakings which ensure that confidential information is tightly protected.”

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Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Office Technology

Probability, Nike Trainers, and Murder: English Court Case Bars Bayes and Raises Ruckus

Last year at about this time the Court of Appeal for England and Wales overturned the conviction of one T (R. v. T. [2010] EWCA Crim 2439) on the charge of murder. It was an identification issue and a critical element in linking the defendant to the crime had to do with a shoeprint left at the scene. The judgment is heavily redacted, reminiscent of some grudging government compliance with a FOI order; nevertheless, it’s clear that shoes found at the defendant’s house had soles that matched the patterns found at the scene of the crime. The important . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

iPad Software Update (IOS 5) and the iCloud

Not that Research in Motion needs more bad news and Apple more positive press, but today Apple launches a significant update to its operating system along with its new cloud service.

I am looking forward to testing out both new developments since I continue to more heavily integrate my iPad into the practice of law (in addition to amassing more Zombie games, including the highly addictive Call of Duty: Zombies HD; my joy in slaughtering zombies, albeit only in a video game app, is causing me concern, although there are apparently no moral issues in killing the undead . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Technology

Chas Rampathal and the Future of Legal Practice – LiveBlog From PLTC

Chas Rampathal, the General Counsel and Vice President of LegalZoom is giving the lunch keynote at today’s PLTC 2011 in Vancouver on the Future of Legal Practice.

LegalZoom is a company that is responsible for 20% of the corporate formations in the US last year.

This is a live post: . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Reading: You might like..., Technology: Internet

Making Your Message Multicultural: Notes on Working With Translators & Interpreters

Suzanne Deliscar is a Canadian lawyer-linguist who translates in the French-English and Spanish-English language pairs. She focuses on legal and official document translation. Ms. Deliscar was called to the Bar of the Province of Ontario in 2004. She can be reached via her website at 

There are few efforts more conducive to humility than that of the translator trying to communicate an incommunicable beauty. Yet, unless we do try, something unique and never surpassed will cease to exist except in the libraries of a few inquisitive book lovers.
Edith Hamilton (American Educator and Author. Known for popularizing classical Greek

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Posted in: Practice of Law

Confidentiality and Clients

I couldn’t help being struck by the contrast between two seemingly unrelated events last week: Eddie Greenspan attacking his former client Conrad Black in the Globe and Mail, and the B.C. Supreme Court striking down money laundering laws insofar as those laws apply to lawyers.

In Federation of Law Societies of Canada v. Canada 2011 BCSC 1270, Madam Justice Gerow found that federal money laundering laws violate section 7 of the Charter to the extent that they apply to legal counsel and law firms. She further found that the violations could not be justified under section 1. Justice . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law