Canada’s online legal magazine.

Arbitration, by Any Other Name

I recently went looking for a simple definition of arbitration and ended up going around in circles.

Wiktionary, the online dictionary, defines arbitrate as to either make a judgement in a dispute as an arbitrator, or to submit a dispute to such a judgment. Arbitrator is then defined as a person to whom the authority to settle or judge a dispute is delegated.

The Oxford English Dictionary is even less helpful. It defines arbitrate as to “reach an authoritative judgement or settlement.” Arbitration is “the use of an arbitrator to settle a dispute,” and arbitrator is “an independent person or . . . [more]

Posted in: Dispute Resolution

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 practice, research, writing and technology.

Research & Writing

Neil Guthrie

In law and business, this now means an employee who snitches on bad practices by co-workers (especially the higher-ups) but who is protected from recrimination by legislative provisions like s 27 of the federal Digital Privacy Act and s 66.1 of the Competition Act, or, in the US, s 922 of Dodd-Frank. … . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

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 more than 80 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. 2. Library Boy 3. Lash Condo Law 4. Know How 5. Timely Disclosure
Alberta Court of Appeal Broadens the Scope of Offences for Conditional Discharges

In May 2019, the Alberta Court of Appeal (ABCA) heard an appeal for a dangerous driving causing bodily harm case.

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Pernicious and Unfair Assumptions Around Colonial Genocide

In 1991, the Supreme Court of Canada in R. v. McCraw reviewed the threat of a criminally accused to inflict bodily harm, and discussed how rape is an act of violence, and not just a sexual act,

It is difficult if not impossible to distinguish the sexual component of the act of rape from the context of violence in which it occurs. Rape throughout the ages has been synonymous with an act of forcibly imposing the will of the more powerful assailant upon the weaker victim. Necessarily implied in the act of rape is the imposition of the assailant’s will

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

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.

COMMERCIAL (DROIT) : Les paragraphes 1 et 12 de l’article 2 de la Loi concernant la lutte contre le tabagisme sont inopérants, dans la mesure où ils interdisent la démonstration et l’utilisation des produits de vapotage à l’intérieur des boutiques spécialisées et des cliniques de cessation tabagique; sont également inopérants . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Courthouse Libraries Helps BC’s Family Law Pros Get Organized With “FLO” — Relaunched With New Features at

For the past couple years, Courthouse Libraries BC (CLBC) has been working with a committee of BC family law professionals to help them realize their vision for a “Family Law Organizer”. As of June 2019, CLBC is pleased to announce FLO’s relaunch with a much improved (and larger) collection of features and resources to connect and help practitioners. FLO’s community statement reads:

FLO is a community of legal professionals established to improve the practice of family law by encouraging dialogue and the free exchange of knowledge, building relationships within the family law bar and related professions, sharing precedents, papers and

. . . [more]
Posted in: Announcements, Legal Information: Information Management, Technology: Internet

Friday Roundup: Slaw Jobs

Each Friday, we share the latest job listings from Slaw Jobs, which features employment opportunities from across the country. Find out more about these positions by following the links below, or learn how you can use Slaw Jobs to gain valuable exposure for your job ads, while supporting the great Canadian legal commentary at

Current postings on Slaw Jobs (newest first):

. . . [more]
Posted in: Friday Jobs Roundup

What We Lose in the Chase for the Almighty Dollar

My generation, filled with existential angst, suffered in our youth the conceit that we would not sell out as those before us did. If Kurt Cobain was the hero of our time, it was because he was authentic to the end, true to his music but not the business. And for those of us who stumbled into this profession, I ask, how many of us wrote a law school admissions essay filled with lofty ambitions to better the world, and of those, how many are left living true to those ambitions? I have seen, no, even worse, convinced, classmates and . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

British Columbia Employment Standards and Labour Relations Reforms Passed

On May 30, 2019, the British Columbia government gave royal assent to an amended version of Bill 8, Employment Standards Amendment Act, 2019 to significantly update the Employment Standards Act, and royal assent to an amended version of Bill 30, Labour Relations Code Amendment Act, 2019 to provide greater protections for unionized workers. According to the government, the changes will better protect workers, bring greater stability for employers and more durable labour relations. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Thursday Thinkpiece: Implicating the System–Judicial Discourses in the Sentencing of Indigenous Women

Periodically on Thursdays, we present a significant excerpt, usually from a recently published book or journal article. In every case the proper permissions have been obtained. If you are a publisher who would like to participate in this feature, please let us know via the site’s contact form.

Implicating the System: Judicial Discourses in the Sentencing of Indigenous Women

Elspeth Kaiser-Derrick was called to the Bar in British Columbia after articling at a criminal defence firm and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the Peter A. Allard School of Law at the University of British Columbia.

ISBN: 978-0-88755-828-3
Publisher: University . . . [more]

Posted in: Thursday Thinkpiece

Book Review: Mistake in Contracting

Several times each month, we are pleased to republish a recent book review from the Canadian Law Library Review (CLLR). CLLR is the official journal of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL/ACBD), and its reviews cover both practice-oriented and academic publications related to the law.

Mistake in Contracting. By Bruce MacDougall. Toronto: LexisNexis, 2018. xlii, 517 p. Includes table of cases and index. ISBN 978-0-433-47303-9 (hardcover) $170.00.

Reviewed by Melanie R. Bueckert, LL.B., LL.M.
Legal Research Counsel
Manitoba Court of Appeal
In CLLR 44:2

This text completes what LexisNexis is marketing as their “Truth in . . . [more]

Posted in: Book Reviews

Tort Litigation and Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Changing the Climate of Opinion

Climate change is probably the single greatest threat to the security and prosperity of Canadians, as well as the rest of the human race. The most effective, least painful way to mitigate climate change is to impose a price on greenhouse gases worldwide, either through carbon taxes or tradable emission permits. However, carbon pricing is as politically difficult as it is economically efficient. In most countries, voters and political leaders have so far refused to support prices high enough to keep the risk of catastrophic climate change within an acceptable band. In Canada, there is also real risk that the . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Ethics