Canada’s online legal magazine.

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, Supreme Advocacy Letter, to which you may subscribe. It’s a summary of all appeals and leaves to appeal granted, so you know what the S.C.C. will soon be dealing with (October 15 – November 11, 2016 inclusive).


Civil Procedure: Contempt
Morasse v. Nadeau-Dubois, 2016 SCC 44 (36351)

In Québec, the power to find someone guilty of contempt of court is an exceptional one; courts have consistently discouraged . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

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.

PÉNAL (DROIT) : L’article 151 a) C.Cr., qui prévoit une peine minimale de 12 mois de détention, est déclaré inopérant dans le cas de l’accusé, qui s’est reconnu coupable d’attouchements sexuels à l’égard d’une jeune fille de 13 ans alors qu’il était lui-même âgé de 18 ans et vivait une . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

The Profession and the Academy Reconnect About Legal Education

For the first time in recent memory, the Federation of Law Societies of Canada and representatives of Canadian law schools met in New Brunswick on October 19-20, 2016 to talk about legal education.

A Brief History of Law Societies v. Law Schools

Here is some background that will help readers understand why this meeting was so important.

Canadian law schools have traditionally had a fairly free hand in setting their curriculum and the requirements for graduation. Law societies set the requirements for the call to the bar in each province. However, the profession has over the past century played a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Education

Amendments to the Rules of the Supreme Court of Canada

Amendments to the Rules of the Supreme Court of Canada were published on November 2nd in the Canada Gazette Part II.

They will come into force on January 1, 2017.

The amendments include a new process for giving notice when an appeal raises a constitutional issue, as well as new deadlines for serving and filing appeal documents. An online Guide exists to help explain the changes.

The existing version of the Rules is available on the Justice Canada website. . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

Charities Political Activities: CRA Consulting on Rules

The Government of Canada has committed to modernizing the rules governing the charitable sector to ensure that they are operating in a regulatory environment that respects and encourages their contribution to society. One of the areas they are looking into is to clarify the rules governing charities political activities. . . . [more]

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

Researching the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Canada

I’ve been meaning to write about how to research the rights of indigenous peoples in Canada for Slaw for the longest time because it seemed like a hot issue and I thought a guide to legal information resources might be useful. However, I was thwarted first by what was the right terminology to use. Indigenous peoples? Native peoples? Aboriginal peoples? Indians? First Nations? Would I offend by using the wrong words? And who am I, a non-Canadian, non-indigenous person to write a research guide anyway? Maybe someone else in Canada has already written a guide? (The answer is yes.). But . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Thursday Thinkpiece: Locked Down—Practical Information Security for Lawyers

Each Thursday 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.

Locked Down: Practical Information Security for LawyerS, 2nd edition

Enter the discount code LD2016 when purchasing this book online from the ABA. Discount valid until 1/1/2017.

Copyright 2016 © by the American Bar Association. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any or portion thereof may not be copied or . . . [more]

Posted in: Thursday Thinkpiece

First Steps on a Journey of Reconciliation

A sold-out audience of lawyers, judges, academics and others gathered in Winnipeg last week for a Journey to of Reconciliation as part of the 2016 Isaac Pitblado Lectures. This event was a first step for The Law Society of Manitoba in meeting the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action #27:

We call upon the Federation of Law Societies of Canada to ensure that lawyers receive appropriate cultural competency training, which includes the history and legacy of residential schools, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Treaties and Aboriginal rights, Indigenous law, and Aboriginal– Crown relations. This

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training, Justice Issues

Standard of Review: The Great Passion of Canadian Law?

The great passion of Canadian law is standard of review. Judging by last week’s 5:4 decision in Edmonton (City) v Edmonton East (Capilano) Shopping Centres Ltd., 2016 SCC 47, we can’t get enough litigation and case law on the subject.

First, a note about the style of cause, which is determined by the vagaries of court practices. The order of the parties should really be reversed, because it was Edmonton East (Capilano) Shopping Centres Ltd. (the “Company”) that started the case by filing a complaint with the Assessment Review Board (the “Board”) for the City of Edmonton (the . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment

High Level Descriptions Added to Alberta Legislation

What does it all mean? Many people are asking themselves that on this day after the US general election.

If your personal ‘what does it all mean’ relates to the laws of Alberta (and why wouldn’t it) there is a new tool to assist you with an answer. The Alberta Queen’s Printer is now providing ‘high level descriptions’ to provide context to search and browse results for legislative information.

Wondering what the Judicature Act is all about? The description offers:

This act provides for the jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal of Alberta and the Court of Queen’s Bench of

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information

Judges and Social Media

In the Discussion Paper “The Use of Social Media by Canadian Judicial Officers“, its stated that 48 per cent of Canadian judicial officers visit or contribute to social media sites (such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube and blogs). The Paper goes on to state that:

In regard to professional interactions with a lawyer who is a social networking contact, 33 per cent of judicial officers who reported social media use believe that it would be acceptable for a “LinkedIn contact” to appear before him/her… However, a small, yet clear, distinction is made if the lawyer is a “Facebook

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues, 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. R. v. Pelletier, 2016 ONCJ 628

[9] I will not detail in my decision the trauma you have suffered. Physical, sexual, and emotional trauma. Even when you were so young. A child. To do so in such a public way as in a judicial decision will not help you heal. I will say this though. Ms. Hughes testified that in the . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII