Canada’s online legal magazine.

Cannabis Legalization Report

On November 30, 2016, the Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation released their final report which contains more than 80 recommendations to governments on how to better promote and protect public health and safety, especially among young Canadians. Particularly, the Task Force recommends: establishing a minimum age of access and restrictions on advertising and promotion; well-regulated production, manufacturing and distribution that can displace the illegal market; and that governments educate Canadians about the new system to improve the public’s understanding of cannabis, including risks such as impaired driving, for example.

Note that the Task Force prefers to use the . . . [more]

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

A Modern Associate Manifesto (Beta)

A spectre is haunting law firms — the spectre of #NewLaw.

There are three things every law firm associate hates: long hours, working on weekends, and their boss. Oh, you think your junior does not hate you? Oh, ok.

Here is the low-down on the traditional law firm:

1) Partners who own the firm make money by selling associates’ labour.

2) Partners sell associates’ labour by billing clients by the hour.

3) Partners pay associates’ fixed salaries regardless of overtime (but they do, sometimes, pay bonuses).

4) At least in Ontario, Canada, statutory employment standards with respect to hours, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology, Practice of Law

Electronic Filing: Can We File Pleadings Electronically in Ontario?

In Ontario some small claims pleadings can be filed electronically.

In December 2016, Regulation 487/16:Rules of Civil Procedure,
filed December 23, 2016 under the Courts of Justice Act was approved.

The Regulation speaks to, among other things, electronic filing:

ELECTRONIC FILING OF ORIGINATING PROCESS FOR ACTION

14.04 (1) A statement of claim (Form 14A (general) or 14B (mortgage actions – foreclosure)) or a notice of action (Form 14C) may be filed electronically, if the statement of claim or notice of action may, under rule 13.1.01, be filed in a court location for which the software authorized by the

. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology

Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and which French-language case have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

For this last week:

1. Vanshaw Enterprises Ltd v Mayfield Investments Ltd, 2016 ABQB 619

[25] The landlord argues forcefully that the missing schedule is a red herring. The obligation to pay rent was not subject to schedule “A”, and furthermore the tenant, through at least two different representatives, was on-site during the entire construction period. They knew what was being built. They had access to . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Will Your New Year’s Resolution Be to Be More Organized and Productive?

I usually pledge to be more organized, but that goal gets lost quickly in the paperwork surrounding my desk and the messages clogging my email. Very recently I participated in an American Association of Law Libraries webinar on getting control of email. I was one of the many participants who had to confess to having over 1,000 emails in my inbox. And I was told by the presenter Randall Dean that the average person spends about two hours a day dealing with email and checks email up to 20 times per day. Dean is the author of a 2009 book, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

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 research, writing, and practice.

Research & Writing

Beginnings and Endings
Neil Guthrie

Openings and closing of business correspondence, that is. My father, an old-fashioned lawyer if there ever was one, once said there are only two ways to start and close a business letter: either Dear Sir/Yours faithfully or Dear Mr So-and-so/Yours truly, depending on one’s level of acquaintance with the recipient. (And not very truly: one is true or one is not, no . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

Protecting FinTech Innovation

“FinTech”, the combination of technology and financial services is taking off with numerous startups and established players all trying to optimize, expand and disrupt the industry. The increasing use of mobile technology, cloud services and changing regulations is causing rapid change in the way services are being provided in many areas, including for financial services. Examples including new payment methods, mobile apps, lending and funding systems, such as crowdsourcing platforms, cloud based budgeting, accounting and finance software, and back office processing.

For companies innovating in this space, there are several types of protection being employed to try to maintain a . . . [more]

Posted in: Intellectual Property

Dropping the Ball on a File Transfer: Rule 48 Dangers for Ontario Lawyers

This post is by Ian Hu, claims prevention & praticePRO counsel at LAWPRO.

When a file is transferred from one lawyer to another, one danger is when nothing happens on the file due to a clumsy transfer or missing critical information. A new file that has not been looked at can be a ticking time bomb. Deadlines like limitation periods can pass by unnoticed, and Rule 48 administrative dismissal dates can be discovered too late. The resulting malpractice claim can have lawyers pointing fingers at each other. Consider the following tips whether you’re transferring a file or on the receiving . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended, Substantive Law

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 seventy 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. Canadian Immigration Law Blog  2. Alcohol & Advocacy 3. Thoughtful Legal Management  4. Double Aspect  5. ABlawg

Canadian Immigration Law Blog
Canada’s New Spousal Sponsorship Forms/Process – The Good, The Bad, and The To-Be-Determined

With the new Spousal Sponsorship Process having been formally rolled out, it is a good . . . [more]

Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Indigenous Law at McGill

McGill law has started something new when students return from the winter break. The first-year students are participating in an intensive course on indigenous legal traditions.

Dean Robert Leckey explains in the Montreal Gazette,

It’s a first for us at McGill and possibly a first at any Canadian law faculty. It’s a promising step toward remedying some of the legal system’s wrongs toward indigenous peoples.

Guided by guests as well as by McGill professors, our students are starting the complex process of learning about indigenous peoples’ law. Doing so involves attending to sources of law — and resources for

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

Internet Archive Launches Trump Archive

Earlier this week, the Internet Archive, a San Francisco–based nonprofit digital library best known for its huge (!) Wayback Machine web archive, launched the Trump Archive.

As a January 5, 2017 blog post explains:

The Trump Archive launches today with 700+ televised speeches, interviews, debates, and other news broadcasts related to President-elect Donald Trump (…)

It includes more than 500 video statements fact checked by FactCheck.org, PolitiFact, and The Washington Post’s Fact Checker covering such controversial topics as immigration, Trump’s tax returns, Hillary Clinton’s emails, and health care.

By providing a free and enduring source for TV news

. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet

May a Plaintiff Compel a Defendant’s Lawyer to Identify His/her Client?

A U.S. court has ordered a lawyer for a defendant in a defamation action to identify his client. Could this be done in Canada? Is it routine? I know that there is Canadian case law on requiring Internet intermediaries to identify users, for both civil and criminal proceedings. I am not aware that lawyers can be required to do so – but maybe that is just because i am no barrister.

The lawyer claimed attorney-client privilege in refusing to answer. If a lawyer shows up in a court proceeding on behalf of a ‘John Doe’ client, is the identity of . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list