Canada’s online legal magazine.

A Few Good Practice Habits: Examination for Discovery

This article is by Ian Hu, claims prevention and practicePRO counsel at LAWPRO.

An examination for discovery often marks the point in which you really sink your teeth into a case. The parties and opposing counsel come to a face-to-face meeting, and key evidence comes out, warts and all. Much of the exploration in an examination for discovery will uniquely depend on the specific witness and the answers that are drawn out. But some answers call for a habitual, routine response. Here are some good practice habits to use at examinations for discovery and avoid malpractice claims.

 

Your Notes: . . . [more]

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

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. R. v. Khan, 2017 ONCA 114

[44] The trial judge properly placed the prior consistent statement on the scale in assessing the credibility of the complainant’s in-court testimony by considering the circumstances in which she made her initial complaint to Constable Flint. To this extent, the prior consistent statement does add to the credibility of the complainant’s in-court testimony and had . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Our Relaunched Intranet – One Year Later

In April of 2016, I wrote about our ambitious project of re-building our corporate intranet. Our previous site had become a dumping ground of information that was poorly maintained and was woefully out of date. During the project, we removed nearly 85% of the content, upgraded a number of internal applications, made the site user friendly and improved the overall usability. We held focus groups and engaged junior, intermediate and senior staff in our decision to ensure the product we delivered would meet their needs.

In May this year, we asked staff for their opinion of the new site. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Tomorrow’s Job Market

In Tomorrow’s Lawyers, leading scholar Richard Susskind envisions the future of legal practice. He argues that with the introduction of new technologies there will be a dramatic change in the jobs that lawyers hold. In particular, he predicts a sharp decrease in the number of traditional legal practitioners, along with the emergence of new jobs for lawyers.

Susskind names eight new types of jobs. They are:

1) the legal knowledge engineer

2) the legal technologist

3) the legal hybrid

4) the legal process analyst

5) the legal project manager

6) the ODR practitioner

7) the legal management consultant

8) . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Technology

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.

Practice

Avoid the (Difficult) End of Day Meeting
Ian Hu

A client insisted on meeting me in the midst of a busy day. Fully booked, I reluctantly agreed to meet the client at the end of the day. We began happily enough with the usual pleasantries. But once we sat down, a monster arose from the deep. One problem after another fell on my lap, and I began to parry.

. . . [more]
Posted in: Tips Tuesday

Enough With “The Law Society of Upper Canada”

Many Ontario lawyers think the “The Law Society of Upper Canada” is still a great name for their governing body. They oppose the suggestion — no, the mere possibility — that the LSUC’s Strategic Communications Steering Group might recommend a name change. Read this article in Law Times for the details, especially the comments at the end in support of the current name — they’re a real treat.

I cannot get my head around lawyers’ continuing support for the term “Upper Canada.” The current year, last I checked, is 2017. There hasn’t been an “Upper Canada” on any reliable map . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of 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 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. First Reference 2. The Factum 3. Legal Sourcery 4. Eva Chan 5. Robeside Assistance

First Reference
Is the first Monday in August considered a statutory holiday?

This year, the first Monday in August is August 7. Although most commonly referred to as “Civic Holiday”, the holiday

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Judicial Dialogue With the Masses via Social Media

In 1997, Peter Hogg responded to criticisms of judicial activism in the post-Charter era by suggesting that the legislature is instead involved in a flexible and dynamic relationship with the courts over Charter rights. He explained this concept, often referred to as the “dialogue principle,” in the Osgoode Hall Law Journal,

Where a judicial decision is open to legislative reversal, modification, or avoidance, then it is meaningful to regard the relationship between the Court and the competent legislative body as a dialogue. In that case, the judicial decision causes a public debate in which Charter values play a more

. . . [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.

TRAVAIL : Le Règlement modifiant le Règlement sur certaines conditions de travail applicables aux cadres des agences et des établissements de santé et de services sociaux, édicté par un arrêté ministériel en date du 23 mars 2015, a été adopté en violation de l’article 2 d) de la Charte . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Two Tales From Alberta

1. Be careful what you ask for…

“Maybe it’s opposite day! Maybe all these X’s mean that my answers are correct! Maybe your “A” is really an “F”! That must be it! I win the bet!”

– Calvin, Calvin & Hobbes

To me, the suggestion that the topic of the Standard of Review is the great Canadian passion, at least for practitioners of administrative law, is firmly tongue in cheek. While I have acknowledged that the standard of review is at the heart of judicial review, there is so much more to administrative law. I would suggest that . . . [more]

Posted in: Administrative Law

Company That Released Result of Employee’s Drug Test Contravened Privacy Law

Written by Cristina Lavecchia, Editor, First Reference Inc.

An employee working for a an international trucking company that is considered a federally regulated employer alleged that while his accident claim was active with a provincial workers’ compensation board (WCB), his employer informed the WCB, without his knowledge and consent, that he had tested positive in a drug test.

According to the employer, they were required to disclose this information by law. However, the WCB and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada both affirmed that the circumstances in this case did not require the employer to make such a . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

How Far Are Lawyers From Drafting Smart Contracts?

I wrote in my last post that the “blockchain will alter the way we think about contracts and several types of legal documents will effectively be software-like.” This is a truism for many cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

Of course, I was referring to “smart contracts” even if I didn’t used the expression “smart contracts” for buzzword avoidance purposes. I suggested that some lawyers would be involved in drafting these “instruments”.

Before we start, there’s some confusion about what a “smart contract” actually means, and it’s at the root of a certain amount of similar confusion in the legal sphere about the immediate . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology