Canada’s online legal magazine.
Carswell Start-up Guide for Sole Practitioner
LexisNexis Legal Products

Short Updates: A Thank-You to Eugene Meehan

The amount of information required to stay abreast of the changing law, in a general sense, is massive. Supreme Court of Canada statistics tell us that there were over 70 decisions to read from that court alone every year. Add your jurisdiction’s Court of Appeal and trial courts decisions, federal and provincial legislative changes, tribunal decisions, municipal and other delegated legislation and you have way more material than any generalist can reasonably consume.

Of course you don’t need to know it all. Many of those pieces of legal information can be learned just in time rather than just in case. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Tips Tuesday

Here are excerpts from the most recent tips on SlawTips, the site that each week offers up useful advice, short and to the point, on technology, research and practice.

Technology

Easily Tweak Windows Settings With the God Mode Folder
Dan Pinnington

Most of you will be used to going into the Control Panel to tweak or change your Windows settings. In the Control Panel, related types of settings are grouped under different icons to help you find the setting you are looking for. But finding a particular setting can sometimes be a challenge as you need to dig down . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

Legal Business Development: Are You the Tortoise or the Hare?

Let’s be honest, most lawyers want the business development process to be more like a sprint to the winners circle. But the reality is that the winner’s circle is reserved for the slow and steady. THAT is not what you wanted to hear, I’m sure!

The fact of the matter is that CONSISTENCY is a silver bullet. Yes, a slow silver bullet! You see, many are looking for the right tool… SEO, Google Ads, social media, blogs, You Tube channel, articles, networking, etc, etc, etc! But these are simply tools, just like your phone is a tool. Your phone, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Of Judicial Notice and the Big Lebowski

Last week, Doug Jasinski graced my post with a comment challenging my interest in how different media like blogs and Wikipedia articles find their way into judgments.

His question: “Do 20-year old slacker movies count as different media?”

I don’t presume, Doug, that you really expected (or wanted) my take on this, but I’m prepared to share it anyway. Doug raised an interesting article from Business Insider which talks about a Texas Supreme Court decision citing the Big Lebowski. The reasons for judgment in Kinney v. Barnes, a freedom of speech injunction matter, were released on August 29, . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Legal Information, Miscellaneous

Ten Specific Strategies for Avoiding Communication-Based Claims

Problems with lawyer-client communication are the number-one cause of claims reported to LAWPRO. The way to prevent these claims sounds simple enough: Remind lawyers to communicate better with their clients.

However, appeals to “communicate better” can seem vague − or even a little “touchy-feely”. Need specifics? Consider the following list of practical strategies. These ten tips were chosen from Tim Lemieux’s article “Is anyone listening? Preventing communications claims” which appeared in the Fall 2011 issue of LAWPRO Magazine.

To communicate better:

  1. Meet with the client yourself (don’t just rely on a clerk’s intake meeting notes).
  2. Remember that the
. . . [more]
Posted in: Reading: Recommended

Law Student Wellness and Mental Health

There’s a new resource that aims to assist Ontario law students with issues relating to “stress, anxiety, and other wellness and mental health concerns.” JustBalance, which received funding from the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities, was developed by the Osgoode Hall Law School in collaboration with law faculties at the University of Toronto, University of Ottawa (Common Law Section), University of Windsor, Queen’s University, Western University and Lakehead University.

Melanie Banka Goela, Osgoode’s Student Success and Wellness Counsellor, led this initiative which began with a survey of law students who were asked what they might . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

Monday’s Mix

Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canada’s award­-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from sixty recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.

This week the randomly selected blogs are 1. U of A Faculty Law Blog  2. The Law of Work 3. Off the Shelf  4. Youth and Work  5. Henry J. Chang’s Canada-US Immigration Blog

U of A Faculty Law Blog
Dominatrix dominates Senate

I had the pleasure of testifying at the Senate last year on a mundane . . . [more]

Posted in: Monday’s Mix

3D Printing and Intellectual Property

Last month, Home Depot announced they would start selling 3D printers in some of their stores. This seems like the next step in the consumerization of technology that began as exclusively for high end users such as automotive manufacturers and architects but is now becoming useable for almost anyone. Even the Toronto Public Library has 3D printers “even for beginners to use.” What effect will the increasing use of 3D printing technology by consumers have on intellectual property and what effect will intellectual property have on the technology?

3D printing is generally a term for additive printing where material is . . . [more]

Posted in: Intellectual Property

Elaborate Rules Means Justice System Is Expensive and Inaccessible

At the Opening of the Courts this week in Ontario, Justice Strathy, the new Chief Justice for the Province, gave a speech which highlighted how the court system is largely inaccessible to the majority of the public, largely due to the cost, complexity and time involved.

He made particular reference to his experience in the Ontario courts as a need for reform:

Having been a lawyer and a judge in this province for over 40 years, it strikes me that we have built a legal system that has become increasingly burdened by its own procedures, reaching a point that we

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues

Summaries Sunday: SOQUIJ

Every week we present the summary of a decision handed down by a Québec court provided to us by SOQUIJ and considered to be of interest to our readers throughout Canada. SOQUIJ is attached to the Québec Department of Justice and collects, analyzes, enriches, and disseminates legal information in Québec.

RECOURS COLLECTIF : Le recours collectif intenté au nom des personnes ayant subi des dommages à la suite des inondations causées par le débordement de la rivière Richelieu au printemps 2011 n’est pas autorisé contre les deux paliers de gouvernement.

Intitulé : Dupuis c. Canada (Procureur général), 2014 QCCS 3997 . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Summaries Sunday: Supreme Advocacy

On one Sunday each month we bring you a summary from Supreme Advocacy LLP of recent decisions at the Supreme Court of Canada. Supreme Advocacy LLP offers a weekly electronic newsletter, SupremeAdvocacyLett@r, to which you may subscribe.

Summary of all appeals and leaves to appeal granted (so you know what the S.C.C. will soon be dealing with). (Aug 14 – Sept. 11, 2014 inclusive).


LEAVES TO APPEAL GRANTED

Intellectual Property: Licences
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation v. Sodrac 2003 Inc., et al., 2014 FCA 84
What is the appropriate tariff here. . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Summaries Sunday: Maritime Law Book

Summaries of selected recent cases are provided each week to Slaw by Maritime Law Book. Every Sunday we present a precis of the latest summaries, a fuller version of which can be found on MLB-Slaw Selected Case Summaries at cases.slaw.ca.

This week’s summaries concern:
Aliens/ Civil Rights / Constitutional Law / Criminal Law / Narcotic Control / Landlord and Tenant

McAteer et al. v. Canada (Attorney General) 2014 ONCA 578
Aliens – Civil Rights – Constitutional Law – Statutes

Summary: The applicants claimed that the requirement in the Citizenship Act (ss. 3(1)(c), 12(3) and 24) that they swear

. . . [more]
Posted in: Summaries Sunday