Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for September, 2010

Canada Not a “Recognised Jurisdiction” in UK Lawyers Transfer Scheme

As of yesterday, foreign lawyers seeking admission to the English and Welsh bar as solicitors via “a shorter alternative route to qualification” must meet the requirements of the new Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme Regulations 2010. One feature of these is the identification of certain jurisdictions as “recognised”; only lawyers from these jurisdictions may take the shorter route to qualification.

Curiously, as of September 1, no Canadian jurisdiction is on the list of recognised jurisdictions, which contains Namibia, Turkey, Israel, and dozens of others. Neither, I should add, is any US state other than California.

According to Legally India . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

A Class Action Suit Against Pedophile Priests Filed in Montreal

On Tuesday, August 31, 2010, the Canadian Press reported that a Montreal man filed a motion for leave to bring a class action suit against the Community of the Clerics of St. Viateur in Montreal and the Raymond-Dewar Institute (also known as the Institute for the Deaf and Dumb) and its priests. Serge D’arcy claims to have been a victim of abuse by pedophile priests while attending the institute between 1967 and 1972.
Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

World Treaty Index

The World Treaty Index began life in 1974 and has been in more or less continuous development since that time, as the output of the database moved from print to various electronic formats. Now it’s managed by researchers from the University of Michigan who have given it a new web interface. (See also the explanatory article on Computational Legal Studies.)

The WTI contains only metadata, as it were, about the treaties, and not the texts themselves, which likely can be found in other online databases, such as the United Nations Treaty Collection. Even so, the database is large . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law

The Growing Acceptance of “Off the Shelf” Service Descriptions

Over the past couple of years, I have noticed that organizations engaging in outsourcing activities are increasingly willing to rely on service providers’ standard service descriptions. The main driver of this trend appears to be tight budgets. At a time of economic uncertainty, there is less capacity for rigorous review of a service provider’s standard service descriptions and service levels. Lacking internal resources, customers are increasingly relying on service providers’ expertise to fill in the gaps. A second factor may be a form of complacency. As customers accumulate a history of positive experiences with successful outsourcings, they may become less . . . [more]

Posted in: Outsourcing

Get on the Partnership Track With the CBA Partnership Toolkit

The Canadian Bar Association’s new Partnership Toolkit is a comprehensive collection of information aimed at lawyers trying to navigate the oftentimes confusing and difficult path to partnership. Lawyers will find a wealth of advice here in the form of self assessments, audio podcasts and articles in both web and PDF formats.

The site can be navigated in an interactive and animated menu style as well as a traditional series of links. Some of the highlights of the Toolkit in include:

. . . [more]
Posted in: Practice of Law

Court Web Site Guidelines – Principles 10 and 11 (Viability, Simplicity)

This post concludes a series of post on the subject topic:

  • Presentation of the CCCT IntellAction Working Group on Court Web Site Guidelines (21 Jan 2010)
  • Presentation of the Working Group selection of principles included in the subject guidelines; principles 1, 2 and 3 explained (The Right Information for Specific Audiences, Empowerment, Timeliness – 17 Aug 2010)
  • Presentation of Principles 4, 5 and 6 (Notification, Content, Security – 20 Aug 2010)
  • Presentation of Principles 7, 8 and 9 (Bilinguism, Accessibility, Interactivity – 25 Aug 2010)

As always, your comments and suggestions are welcome. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Technology: Internet

Cleaning Files From Hard Drives

Most of us realize that merely deleting a file doesn’t really remove it from the hard drive or other storage media it resides on. (For some background on this issue see a post I wrote a while back.)

Given how we use digital devices today – both for work and personal use – we can’t just abandon this issue to our firm IT staff. Our personal computers at home, our phones, copiers, memory sticks and ipads all probably contain our own personal information, or personal or confidential information of others. We need to manage that not only while we use . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology

What’s Good Enough?

What’s the best thing about Wikipedia? It’s a source that’s “good enough”. It’s an excellent way to get up to speed when all you really need is general or background knowledge. And the price point is so attractive! But would I rely on Wikipedia exclusively? Doubtful … and I certainly wouldn’t rely on it in an important situation without checking primary sources. 

Some wikis are now appearing as sources of legal information. I was fascinated to read the recent post on this site about the new tax wiki established by Professor Ben Alarie, of the U of T Law Faculty; . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing