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Archive for ‘Reading: Recommended’

Legal Research and Information Literacy

Via a post on the Legal Writing Prof blog, I’m reading an interesting paper, “Say Goodbye to the Books: Information Literacy as the New Legal Research Paradigm,” by Professors Ellie Margolis and Kristen Murray of Temple University. The paper is available for download in the SSRN Working Paper Series.

Purely coincidentally, a similar thought arose this morning in an internal planning meeting about our legal research and writing instruction this fall. It was expressed that to introduce online research resources by reference to or comparison with their print counterparts is likely no longer a suitable approach. The argument is not . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Legal Information, Reading: Recommended

Getting the Final Document Correct: A Checklist for Commercial Transactions

The following is the introductory article to LAWPRO’s new commercial transaction checklist that appeared in the August 2012 edition of LAWPRO Magazine. The full checklist can be downloaded from our Checklists page at

Many commercial matters involve the preparation of one or more documents. These documents are drafted based on communications between the parties to the document and/or their respective lawyers, the specific circumstances of the matter and applicable substantive law.

While the majority of commercial deals in Ontario are concluded without difficulties, all too often LAWPRO sees claims arising due to various real – or alleged – problems . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Diversify Your Practice While Avoiding the Danger of a Malpractice Claim

The new issue of LAWPRO Magazine includes an article entitled Diversify without dabbling: before expanding your practice, expand your competence!. It looks at how how lawyers who are considering expanding the scope of their practice can do so safely and avoid a malpractice claim (dabbling outside one’s comfort zone is often a cause of claims). Watch for the full version of this article at

Here are five tips from the article on how to expand your practice skills safely.

1. Expand purposefully
If you decide to expand your scope of practice, make sure that the decision to . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Reading: Recommended

Toronto Star Article on Frauds Targeting Lawyers

Today’s Toronto Star has an article on the email-based scams that have been plaguing lawyers the last few years.

It claims that these frauds have cost law firms in North America $70 million. That sounds like a huge figure at first, but from what we’ve seen the size of these scams are about $200,000 to $300,000, so it would only take about 250 or so lawyers to fall for it to reach that total. practicePRO’s fraud-reporting email address has received thousands of emails since it was set up, but that’s probably only represents a small portion of the lawyers who . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

The Kowalski Bible on Lawyer Conservation

Everyone loves a good story. Numerous studies show that people are more likely to learn and retain information told in the format of a story, probably a vestige from the primary means of relaying information through most of human history.

So what about the story describing the imminent doom of the legal profession as we know it? Mitch Kowalski, who joined the Slaw team this year, just released a book this year which tells this tall tale.

Avoiding Extinction: Reimagining Legal Services for the 21st Century relates a fictitious account of an innovative and visionary law firm, Bowen, Fang . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Jurisprudential Solitudes?

A discussion on the Canadian Association of Law Libraries list this morning strikes me as worth a share here. Dawn Urquhart drew subscribers’ attention to a National PostLegal Post article published on the web yesterday, “Court decisions may be lost in translation.” The article appears in today’s National Post with the somewhat less fair title, “Quebec decisions isolated by lack of translation,” and the even less fair lede, “Lawyers outside Quebec can’t read useful judgments.”

The author cites Ted Tjaden’s excellent post here on Slaw from last year, wherein Ted noted the limited overlap in . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading: Recommended

My Summer Projects List

Following the inspiring lead of Connie Crosby and Shaunna Mireau, I’m sharing a summer project list. I have quite a long summer project list, and it has had to face regular trimming. Summer rarely seems to offer the generous spare time foreseen during the hectic days of the late spring term.

My summer project list contains standard mundane tasks like reorganizing files – physical and electronic – as well as institutional projects difficult to achieve during the academic term, and taking a bird’s-eye view of library collections and services. I won’t bore anyone with those.

Some of the invigorating . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Reading: Recommended, Technology: Office Technology

My Summer Reading List

I’ve seen other summer reading lists lately and thought it would be fun to put together my own list of books currently or recently on my nightstand. There’s quite a range here–management/leadership type titles, geek girl titles, and some challenging fiction. I’m not really one for light reading! And, there’s probably no way I can get through all of these in the summer, but I can certainly try. And of course in putting this list together I found even more new books, so I better get reading.

What is on your summer reading list?

Here is the list (with no . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading: Recommended, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Morden Report on Policing at the G-20 Summit to Be Released on June 29 at 10 AM

Here are links to the Report and to the Executive Summary of the Independent Civilian Review into Matters Relating to the G20 Summit.

Mr. Morden will be speaking at the release of the Report at Toronto Police Service Headquarters, 40 College Street, 2nd floor at 10 AM. Counsel to the Independent Civilian Review, Ryan Teschner, will be answering questions from the media.

. . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Reading: Recommended, Substantive Law: Legislation

The Most Important Book on Statutory Interpretation Since 2000 – Yes But…

On June 15, our friends at Eagan published a brilliant and in some ways strange book that should be in every law library, since it is (as my headline says) the most important book on statutes this millennium: Reading Law, The Interpretation of Legal Texts. Its strangeness is due to the identity of its authors – the fiercely intelligent and challenging Justice Antonin Scalia the senior justice of the US Supreme Court , and the leading legal lexicographer of our time, Bryan Garner of LawProse in Texas. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Reading: Recommended, Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

ABA Ethics 20/20 Commission Seeking Comments on Lawyers Having Virtual Presence in Another Jurisdiction

The ABA Commission on Ethics 20/20 is seeking comments on a newly released Issues Paper entitled “Issues Paper Concerning Model Rule of Professional Conduct 5.5 and the Limits on Virtual Presence in a Jurisdiction.” They are seeking comments to assist their consideration of the issues that come up when lawyers establish a presence and practice virtually in a jurisdiction that is away from their physical location. Responses are requested by July 31, 2012. See the above link for instructions on where to send them.

Remote virtual practices raise all sorts of interesting questions:

  • How do you ensure the
. . . [more]
Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Reading: Recommended, Technology: Internet

LAWPRO 2011 Annual Review: Claim Numbers & Costs Reach New Highs

At the end of this week Ontario lawyers will be receiving our third annual review of LAWPRO operations.

The big story in 2011 is claims. The number of claims reported is up 11 per cent to 2,468. And based on actuaries’ projections, claims costs in the E&O program could top the $90 million mark for 2011.

What’s driving the increase in claims?

As is more fully explained in the article, no matter how we slice and dice the numbers, the trend is up:

  • It’s a more complex business environment in which you’re handling more complex files that seem to
. . . [more]
Posted in: Reading: Recommended