Canada’s online legal magazine.
CBA Banner

Archive for ‘Reading’

Communications Breakdown: When a Lawyer Uses Jargon

“We’re [McLeish , Orlando LLP] in the process of retaining an ad agency for some of our marketing,” says Dale Orlando. “And it’s really frustrating when they use acronyms we don’t understand. You don’t want to ask because it seems like everybody else in the room knows what that means, so maybe I should.

“One agency came in to talk about a service agreement, and they were trying to explain to us the services they were going to provide. After listening for 30 minutes I still had no clue what they were going to be doing.” . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Communications Breakdown: When a Lawyer Has No Sense of Time

A few years ago, Judith Huddart, collaborative family lawyer at Dranoff and Huddart, Barristers and Solicitors had to visit the doctor.

She checked in, provided her health card and settled in with a book. Patients who came in after her came and went.

“I suddenly realized there was no one left in the waiting room. An hour had gone by and I was still sitting there. When I got up and looked around – which I probably should have done earlier – I realized there was no one around at all,” she says. The doctor had left and when she . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading

Chatting in Secret

The Intercept has an article entitled Chatting in Secret While We’re All Being Watched that’s a good read for anyone interested in how to keep communications private. It was written by Micah Lee, who works with Glenn Greenwald to ensure their communications with Edward Snowden are private.

Even if you don’t want to read the detailed technical instructions on how to go about it, at least read the first part of the article that explains at a high level how communications can be intercepted, and the steps needed to stop that risk.

Communicating in secret is not easy. It takes . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading, Technology

What Do Title Insurers Expect From Lawyers?

This article first appeared in LAWPRO’s July 2015 real estate webzine “Bringing critical thinking to real estate deals.”

Still relatively new in Canada, title insurance is not fully understood by many consumers. Even certain less-sophisticated lenders lack detailed knowledge of the product. The responsibility for explaining title insurance to those who purchase it – and for supporting insureds in obtaining coverage that suits their needs – falls squarely on lawyers’ shoulders.

Lawyers are also responsible for communicating accurately with the proposed insurer about the details of a real estate transaction, the property to be purchased, and the expectations and needs . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Communications Breakdown: When a Lawyer Doesn’t Share

After getting some work done on his cottage, Dale Orlando, partner at McLeish, Orlando LLP in Toronto, had a dispute with the contractor over fees.

“He was doing work that needed to be done but without clearing it with me first,” Orlando says. As a result the project went over budget. “I should have been communicated with before the work was done, not afterwards.”

Imagine going for surgery without the doctor telling you where they will be cutting. That would be unthinkable. Similarly, why should the client allow the lawyer to proceed without knowing what was being done?

Clients need . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Digital Currency – the Senate Reports

Are you keeping track of the law on digital currency such as Bitcoin? Are your clients using it, or wanting to? Are you?

The Senate of Canada has issued a report supporting its use. Here’s a story on the report (in case you don’t subscribe to Crypto Coin News…).

Objects in the future are closer than they appear (sometimes). . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

Communications Breakdown: When a Lawyer Doesn’t Listen

A study for the Law Society of England and Wales by Hilary Sommerlad, quoted in “What Clients Want” by Clark Cunningham, found that 50% of clients polled had worked with lawyers they did not like. The study concluded it was, more often than not, the way lawyers interacted with clients that was the issue. Indeed, the paper describes a true situation “where a specialist lawyer with a ‘big reputation’ had interrupted the client because she believed she had heard enough to ‘get the picture.’”

This had the unintended consequence of leaving the client too frightened to speak up in future . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Communications Breakdowns: When a Lawyer Doesn’t Care

Why, if lawyers are supposed to be good communicators, are the majority of LAWPRO claims related to communication issues? In 2014, for example, the broad category of communications accounted for about almost a third of claims reported and claims costs. In the article “Let’s Get Talking: A Look at Communications Breakdowns“, from LAWPRO Magazine we asked some lawyers to give their opinions on how lawyer-client communications can break down. This excerpt deals with lawyers giving clients the impression they don’t really care:

How can lawyers understand what clients truly want if they don’t listen? And how can lawyers . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

New LAWPRO Resource for Wills & Estates Lawyers: A Malpractice Claims Fact Sheet

With such a large amount of claims prevention information available in LAWPRO Magazine articles and practicePRO resources, we had the idea to create simple fact sheets to help lawyers in their day-to-day practice and as well as CPD providers, who could use them developing their program material or as handouts. The latest in our series of “malpractice claims fact sheets” covers wills & estates law.

The sheets includes quick claims facts, the main causes of claims against lawyers, hot topics in the particular areas of law, tips for avoiding claims and links to practicePRO resources.

We are also developing . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Inside the Lawyer’s Mind: Managing Our Traits

Following up on his previous week’s posts on lawyers’ personality traits (autonomy, skepticism,urgency), sociability, and resilience.) Ian Hu (practicePRO and Claims Prevention Counsel at LAWPRO) looks at how lawyers face an uphill battle to keep turnover low, keep colleagues happy, and maintain civility across the profession.

I spoke with consultant and lawyerbrainblog.com blogger Dr. Larry Richard, who provided strategies to manage or overcome these problems in his LAWPRO article. Dr. Richard pointed out that personality traits are expressions of preference. As such, we are not stuck with our personality traits forever. We can learn . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Inside the Lawyer’s Mind: Resilience

Following up on his previous posts on lawyers’ personality traits (autonomy, skepticism,urgency), and sociability) Ian Hu (practicePRO and Claims Prevention Counsel at LAWPRO) discusses “resilience”, a measure of how well lawyers bounce back from setbacks.

A lawyer high in resilience is receptive to criticism and feedback and is not defensive. He is less likely to take criticism personally and is better at focusing on accomplishing the task at hand. If he suffers a loss or is rejected, he will bounce back easily. With all the challenges lawyers face, you’d think we score high on resilience. . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Inside the Lawyer’s Mind Part 4: Sociability

Following up on his previous posts on lawyers’ personality traits (autonomy, skepticism and urgency), Ian Hu (practicePRO and Claims Prevention Counsel at LAWPRO) discusses “sociability”, a person’s desire to meet new people and make new friends.

The average lawyer scores on the bottom 12% on measures of sociability, according to lawyer/psychologist consultant Dr. Larry Richard. This trait measures a person’s desire to meet new people and make new friends. A low score means that a lawyer is uncomfortable going in cold in social situations. He is slow to warm up to people, but happy in his existing . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended