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Archive for ‘Practice of Law: Practice Management’

Massive Spike in Bad Cheque Frauds Targeting Lawyers Worldwide

Over the last four days there has been a massive spike in bad cheque frauds targeting lawyers in across Canada (BC, Ontario and Quebec), the U.S. (NC, NY) and several other countries around the world (including Australia, Fiji, Italy, Scotland, Sweden, Turkey and the U.K.).

Almost 300 lawyers notified us that they received an initial contact message on one of these frauds. As LAWPRO would receive reports on a fraction of the attempted frauds, it would appear that thousands of lawyers have been targeted over the last four days. Several thousand lawyers have visited the AvoidAClaim blog for more information . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Internet

Frauds Targeting Lawyers Continue at High Level: Don't Be Duped

[This is the text (updated for SLAW) of a Fraud Alert that LAWPRO sent to Ontario Lawyers December 15, 2011.]

LAWPRO continues to see high numbers of bad cheque frauds targeting lawyers across Canada and the U.S., as well as several other countries around the world. On a monthly basis, 250-300 lawyers advise us that have been targeted by bad cheque frauds. We are seeing the same types of scams over and over again, and on a weekly basis we are seeing two or three new fraudster client names. And these frauds are becoming more sophisticated. Very experienced lawyers have . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

Sitting on a Non-Profit Board: A Risk Management Checklist

Serving as a director of a charitable or not-for-profit corporation can be a rewarding but potentially risky experience. A director can be held personally liable for his or her own actions or failures to act, as well as jointly and severally liable with the other members of the board of directors. Directors with specialized knowledge and expertise, such as lawyers, are held to a higher standard of care. Ontario lawyers should note that LAWPRO’s standard professional liability insurance policy provides coverage only for the “professional services” that a lawyer provides as a lawyer. It does not provide coverage for liability . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

LSUC Guide to Implementing Accessibility for Ontarians With Disabilities Act

This 2005 legislation was enacted to improve accessibility for persons with disabilities. Customer Service Standards adopted under the Act are effective on January 1, 2012 for providers of goods and services, including law firms. The Law Society has created a guide which is meant to assist legal service providers in developing the resources to comply with the Standards. The guide and suggestions for compliance with the Standards can be downloaded from the Law Society website and found in Appendix 1. This is an obligation imposed by the Province that must be observed to respect those with disabilities and avoid unfortunate . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

LSUC Releases a Guide to Developing a Customer Service Accessibility Policy

The Law Society of Upper Canada, pursuant to the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 ("AODA") has released their Guide to Developing a Customer Service Accessibility Policy. This guide is to assist law firms in Ontario in developing the resources to comply with the Customer Service Standards [The Accessibility Standards for Customer Service Regulation (the Customer Service Standards) was adopted in 2007 under the AODA, and are effective on January 1, 2012 for providers of goods and services.] The goal is to make Ontario accessible by 2025 for everyone, including persons with disabilities.
Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

Surviving a Disaster: A Lawyer’s Guide to Disaster Planning

We all like to avoid thinking about bad things like earthquakes, tornadoes and other natural disasters. We also tend to avoid thinking about other things that might impact on our personal and professional lives. However, major and minor disasters abound, are a fact of life, and will occur whether we like it or not, due to natural causes or by human error or malicious actions.

And while major natural disasters are typically the ones that get the most attention and headlines, even minor disasters – a burst pipe in the server room or the sudden and unexpected departure of a . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

North Carolina Revisits Cloud Computing Ethics Opinion

The North Carolina State Bar has revisited its proposed Formal Ethics Opinion (FEO) on cloud computing and addressed many of the concerns the legal cloud computing community had previously expressed.

The main point of concern with the previous opinion was a list of minimum mandatory requirements that an attorney had to ensure was met by their cloud computing provider. In an open letter to the NC State Bar, the Legal Cloud Computing Association outlined its concerns with the proposed FEO; prominent bloggers such as Carolyn Elefant, Stephanie Kimbro, Erik Mazzone and Niki Black also outlined their concerns about . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

A Typeface Designed for Lawyers

We’ve talked a bit before on Slaw about Matthew Butterick’s great book, Typography for Lawyers, copies of which should be found wherever lawyers’ thoughts are committed to print (digital or otherwise). Now Butterick’s created Equity, a typeface specifically for lawyers. He says, in an article in Co. Design, that he designed Equity:

to be every bit as space-efficient as TNR [Times New Roman], but eminently more readable—and a tad sexy. “I wanted Equity to be like a navy-blue Armani suit: a classic updated with contemporary virtues.”

The typeface includes 24 fonts—a face is a design and a . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management

Six Technology Tools for Improving Client Communication

This article originally appeared in the Fall 2011 issue of LAWPRO Magazine. All issues of the magazine can be found at

Technology is becoming an ever greater part of our lives, both personally and professionally. On a daily basis most of us use a cellphone or smartphone, a desktop computer and the Internet. Many of us will have an iPad or other tablet device and be posting updates on Facebook, Twitter or other social media tools.

Clients expect their lawyers to be technology literate – and there are always new and improved ways for communicating with clients. Here . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology

LexisNexis PCLaw Practice Suite

At yesterday’s 5th Annual Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers (FACL) Conference, Avvy Go and Julian Falconer spoke about mentorship and noted that large firms presumptively have resources that small and solo firms do not.

The future of legal practice management will invariably lie in technological solutions to strategic problems, especially for those with limited resources. I had a private tour earlier this week of the new LexisNexis product launched in Ontario, PCLaw Practice Suite, intended primarily for firms with 1 to 5 lawyers. The platform was developed after years of research and communication with small practitioners to assess . . . [more]

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

Thoughts on Time Management

Over at the Small Firm Innovation blog there’s been a number of terrific posts with some of the legal industry’s top minds sharing their thoughts on time management.

Niki Black kicks the discussion off with a discussion of how the just-released iPhone 4S’s digital assistant Siri can be used to more efficiently manage our time. Niki describes how Siri’s voice recognition facilities not only allow iPhone 4S users to efficiently and easily create appointments, tasks to help with managing their time, but how they can save time by dictating these items while we would otherwise be unproductive (such as while . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading: Recommended, Technology

Huge Collection of Fake IDs, Documents and Cheques Given to Lawyers by Fraudsters

Fraud attempts against lawyers can involve a great deal of counterfeit documentation, starting with the initial client ID (passports, licenses), various agreements, loan documents and bank statements, and ending with the cheque that finally arrives at the lawyer’s office. When we add posts about a fraud to the AvoidAClaim blog, we also provide images of these fake documents that lawyers have provided to us.

On a new page on the AvoidAClaim blog we have post a large selection of the fake passports, licenses, documentation and cheques in one place. The page is called “Huge collection of fake IDs, documents . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Internet