Canada’s online legal magazine.

Indigenous Woman’s Human Rights Case Gets Second Wind

by Daniel Standing LL.B., Editor, First Reference Inc.

Systemic racism can easily fuel discriminatory conduct, but it is notoriously hard to prove. In Ledger v Alberta Health Services and Alberta Justice and Solicitor General, 2021 AHRC 95, the Human Rights Tribunal of Alberta decided that an Indigenous woman’s case was dismissed too soon and should have instead gone to a full hearing. The decision provides a helpful overview of the law on discrimination, the interplay between race and changing societal values, and the prime importance of investigating and appropriately responding to discrimination complaints.

Facts of the case

Eileen Ledger . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Navigating the Early Years of Practice

The first years of a lawyer’s career are some of the toughest. These years aren’t only an important time for honing legal skills, they are also essential for navigating into areas of practice and ultimately a firm or organization that is a match for your interests, values, and goals.

In the AMP (Associate Mentoring Plus) program I run, all the mentors have worked at more than one law firm or company. Each of them has a story to tell about making career moves to work in firms, practice areas, and with clients who were the best fit for their interests, . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

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. Meads v. Meads2012 ABQB 571

[1] This Court has developed a new awareness and understanding of a category of vexatious litigant. As we shall see, while there is often a lack of homogeneity, and some individuals or groups have no name or special identity, they (by their own admission or by descriptions given by others) often fall into the following

. . . [more]
Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Lawyers Addicted to Technology: Cutting the Cord

Not exactly a new subject, is it? And yet the pandemic has brought a new focus to technology addiction as way too many lawyers worked longer hours at home than they ever did at the office, their overtired, burning eyes fixed on their monitors.

As the pandemic receded and lawyers ventured out, we heard a regular theme about technology – “I can’t let go.” Finally, a chance to take a vacation emerged in the summer of 2021 and we proved to be pretty terrible at relaxing sans technology.

Technology Itself Gives You Tools to Cut the Cord

Your phone is . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

You Can’t Make Me Get Vaccinated…Can You?

While there have always been “vaccine deniers”, or parents refusing to get their children mandatory vaccinations, I don’t think we’ve seen the degree of vehement objection as we have the protests against the Covid-19 vaccines. Yet vaccines have been proved to be the most effective way to bring the coronavirus under control. While there have been “breakthrough” cases of vaccinated people, most recent hospitalizations and deaths have been of unvaccinated people. And so the issue now is, “how about mandatory vaccinations”? Here I discuss the factors relevant to answering this question. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Is Remote Work a Thing Now?

My son recently announced that the small law firm website design company he works for will be giving up their trendy office space in Vancouver’s Gas Town and permanently moving to a remote work environment. He was ecstatic, as he LOVES working from home. But my husband (a school teacher near retirement) insists that most workers prefer the sociability of a traditional face-to-face workplace and that despite expert predictions, remote work won’t be a serious thing after the pandemic. It made me wonder where law firms might fall on the scale. (I learned that the answer has significant marketing, HR, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing, Legal Technology, Practice of Law

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

More Bad Verbs From Nouns
Neil Guthrie

We’ve already covered the awful reference when refer to is meant (but I seem to be losing the battle in getting people to use the latter). Two new horrors crossed the radar recently. One is reference again, but used to mean checking a candidate’s references for employment purposes. Ugh. … . . . [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. SOQUIJ | Le Blogue 2. Library Boy 3. Lawyered Podcast 4. Official Clio Blog 5. Condo Adviser

SOQUIJ | Le Blogue
Portrait de la fraude dans l’industrie aéronautique

L’industrie aéronautique est une industrie globale et très compétitive qui génère des milliards de dollars d’activité économique. Elle est

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

A Specialized Lawyer Does Not Need to Be Certified

Lawyers are distinct from other professionals like medicine in that the license provided is inherently broad, and limited only by the restrictions the lawyer places upon themselves.

For example, the Model Code states at 3.1-1 that a competent lawyer “means a lawyer who has and applies relevant knowledge, skills and attributes in a manner appropriate to each matter undertaken on behalf of a client and the nature and terms of the lawyer’s engagement…” Those knowledge, skills, and attributes can be defined or applied in many different ways, especially where a lawyer is working with other lawyers who have different or . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, 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.

FAMILLE : La personne qui prétend être le parent biologique d’un enfant devrait être visée par l’expression «l’un de ses parents» se trouvant à l’article 3147 C.C.Q., qui traite de la compétence des autorités québécoises en matière de filiation.

Intitulé : Droit de la famille — 211290, 2021 QCCA 1123 . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Summaries Sunday: Supreme Advocacy

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, Oral Judgments and Leaves to Appeal granted from June 18 – July 16, 2021 inclusive.

Appeals

Aboriginal Law: Flooding; Equitable Compensation
Southwind v. Canada, 2021 SCC 28 (38795)

The trial judge here valued flooded land based on its value in 1929, with 10 percent valued as waterfront land and 90 percent valued as bushland. . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Friday Jobs Roundup

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 Slaw.ca.

Current postings on Slaw Jobs:

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