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Archive for ‘Substantive Law: Legislation’

Why Can’t Amicus Curiae Be Required to Be Objective “Friends of the Court”?

Many Ontarians cannot afford a lawyer. Chief Justice Winkler said that “an expanding group of Ontarians are finding that the system is often too expensive, too complicated and too slow in assisting them with their legal problems.” Chief Justice McLachlin has said the options for “average middle-class Canadians,” ineligible for legal aid, are “grim.

In response to this, one initiative has involved the appointment of amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) in mental health appeals and family law disputes. In a decision called Bhajan v. Ontario (Children’s Lawyer), the Ontario Court of Appeal recently described . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Ontario Personal Injury Reforms and Catastrophic Update

Ontario Regulation 34/10 to the Insurance Act became effective on September 1, 2010, along with several other significant changes affecting personal injury and motor vehicle collision practice in Ontario.

The Law Society of Upper Canada and the Ontario Bar Association hosted a session to discuss these changes, The New Auto Insurance Regime – Practical Strategies for Radical Change, with John A. McLeish and Dale V. Orlando of McLeish Orlando LLP. A paper provided by Patrick Brown and Rikin Morzaria, also of McLeish Orlando LLP, outlined the changes.

Roger G. Oatley and James L. Vigmond of Oatley, . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Substantive Law: Legislation

Welcome to in Custodia Legis – Mapping the Law of the US

We didn’t get around to noticing the Law Library of Congress’ new blog In Custodia Legis, which explains its name and aim here.

Today, it featured a new post on the developments at Thomas to make legislative information more accessible. There aren’t a lot of comments yet, but it’s early days.

The high spots for me were on Social Media and a Legislative Map at the State level, which looks simple but is only simple to use.

Social Media Box

In addition to easier access to the Library’s social media, there is a new box to highlight ways . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Mixed Martial Arts Coming to Ontario

Last weekend Premier Dalton McGuinty approved mixed martial arts (MMA) fights in the Province of Ontario, after years of resisting its introduction. Ontario will be the seventh province in Canada to allow MMA fights.

One of the major obstacles has been a provision in the Criminal Code banning what is termed as “prize fights,” with a specific exception for boxing,

Engaging in prize fight
83. (1) Every one who
(a) engages as a principal in a prize fight,
(b) advises, encourages or promotes a prize fight, or
(c) is present at a prize fight as an aid, second, surgeon, umpire,
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Substantive Law: Legislation

New U.K. Legislation Site

As we were alerted in a comment by Nick Holmes last year at this time, the U.K. has gathered together in one place nearly all of its online legislation. is managed by Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, in turn part of the U.K. National Archives. At the moment the site is still lacking a promised “changes to legislation” function that will chart the various amendments, repeals, etc. to legislation occurring since 2002. There is, however, a point-in-time search facility.

Curiously, I’ve been unable to find a statement on the site as to whether the online version of . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology: Internet

What Does Ontario Bill 68 Really Mean?

Ontario Bill 68, The Open for Business Act, 2010 was recently tabled in Legislature. The aim of the Bill is to create a more competitive business climate in the province, while protecting the environment and public interest. Among the over 100 proposed amendments to various pieces of legislation, broadly stated, the upcoming changes would:
Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Transboundary Waters Protection

In the middle of May, Minister of Foreign Affairs Lawrence Cannon introduced Bill C-26, the Transboundary Waters Protection Act, which has received 1st reading. According to the (as usual) excellent legislative summary from the Parliamentary Information and Research Service, the Bill has as its main features expansion of the waters affected by the existing prohibition on bulk water removals. Now waters that flow across the boundary between the U.S. and Canada are included, whereas before only waters that straddle the boundary were affected.

Prohibited “bulk removal” is defined as follows:

    “bulk removal” means the removal of water from boundary

. . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Alberta Rules of Court Regulation

Happy Friday! The long awaited, new Alberta Rules of Court regulation is available.
Order in Council 256/2010 alerts us that the Rules of Court is regulation made under the authority of section 28.1 of the Judicature Act. The O.C. contains the appendix that is the Rules regulation.

As previously mentioned this document is a culmination of hard work by many in the legal community. Congratulations to all who contributed to the rules revision. . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Gazette Officielle Du Québec: A Guide for the Rest of Us

This is an internal Heenan Blaikie piece which my colleagues Michel Gamache and Chantal Belanger (Technicienne en documentation) wrote to help those of us who have problems finding Québec official proclamations and the like. I think the tips are well worth noting for all Canadian legal researchers.

Some history

The Gazette officielle du Québec is the means by which the Quebec Government makes its decisions official. Published continuously since 1869, it makes public, on a weekly basis, all texts whose publication is required: statutes, regulations and other statutory instruments. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Legislation

Internet Archive for Older Ontario Regulations

I have in the past hoped for good (or better) interfaces to the massive amounts of older Canadian legal materials being digitized on the Internet Archive.

While that hope still remains (since I think there is a need for it), I was pleasantly surprised this morning that by simply searching the words “ontario AND regulations AND 1979″ in the “Canadian Libraries” database, the result came first and it was relatively easy to get to the particular regulation I was looking for by choosing the PDF format of the document (although the PDF file was a bit large at over . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology: Internet

What Is the Public Works Protection Act Anyway?

A little-known Ontario law called the Public Works Protection Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. P.55 received much publicity in the last few days due to the decision to designate a large swath of downtown Toronto as a “public work” ( It was said this was due to G20 security concerns, giving police wide powers to search people who even dared to venture near the G20 security zone.

Many were caught off-guard by this formerly little-known legislation. What does it do? . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation