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Archive for February, 2014

Let’s Chat About New Lawyer Training

It’s a standard trope in any discussion of legal education that law students are not prepared to practice law immediately after graduation. While efforts are being made by some law schools to change their curriculums to graduate “practice ready” students, the great majority of “lawyer training” (as opposed to “legal education”) occurs in an attorney’s first few years of practice. Formal, informal, in-house and external…new lawyer training takes many forms and has many contributors. This month’s CBA Futures twitter chat is going to talk about them all.

As an American, I’ve been fascinated with the Canadian articling system. A common . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

The Law Practice Program Should Not Be Integrated Into Canadian Law Schools

The time to think boldly about legal education is now

This is a time to think boldly about the possibilities for legal education and law schools. Recent posts on this blog testify to a renewed interest in re-examining the education of lawyers. As legal educators, we should be unafraid to question all aspects of our approach to legal education, even those practices that are so familiar that they seem beyond review.

For that reason, Lakehead’s proposal to integrate a law practice program within the confines of their three-year law degree might be lauded. Students who graduate from Lakehead will not . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Education

Federal Court Pushes Back Against Copyright Trolling

In the era of high speed internet and a culture of ubiquitous sharing, what are copyright owners to do in enforcing their claims? Or are fears of these claims being used to unduly extort unwitting consumers?

Although popular file sharing site is still down, the harbours at Pirate Bay are still wide open. Revelations through Edward Snowden this week demonstrate that these file sharing sites have even been deemed to be a malicious foreign actor, simply for being a document repository. Yet a Federal court decision on Thursday in Voltage v. Does may provide some recourse without . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Summaries Sunday: SOQUIJ

La juge a commis des erreurs de calcul quant au nombre de jours imputables à la poursuite qui compromettent l'analyse du caractère raisonnable du délai écoulé avant le procès de l'intimé, accusé de conduite avec les facultés affaiblies ayant causé la mort à la suite d'un accident survenu en 2004; il n'y a donc pas lieu d'ordonner l'arrêt des procédures.
Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Summaries Sunday: OnPoint Legal Research

Areas of law: Charter of Rights; Elections; Right to Vote ~ Amendments to Canada Elections Act imposing voter identification requirements as precondition to casting vote in federal or provincial election constituting facial infringement of right to vote under s. 3 of Charter—Amendments, however, demonstrably justified under s. 1 ~
Posted in: Summaries Sunday

The Friday Fillip: In Praise of Piffle

There are many ways for writing to come to grips with the contingent nature of life. One of the oddest has to be the prose of P. G. Wodehouse, which occupies a niche in the neighbourhood of nonsense, farce, satire, and fairy tales. It is as light as down, utterly lacking in apparent social import, and seemingly artless. Yet it would be a mistake to dismiss it for any of these reasons. The writing is the product, in fact, of a brilliant mind and a great deal of careful labour, and it treats the poignant fact that we are all . . . [more]

Posted in: The Friday Fillip

Approval of Trinity Western University’s Law School? It’s Complicated

Trinity Western University views sexual relations outside of a marriage between one man and one woman as inconsistent with “biblical and TWU ideals”, and requires its students and faculty to agree to abstain from such activities. In short, TWU discriminates against people on the basis of their sexual orientation.

My wish for Canada is that that sort of discrimination becomes so contrary to the social and public mainstream that, regardless of whether it is legally permitted, only the most marginal and outsider groups will engage in it. That to require students to sign a community covenant eschewing same-sex expressions of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Ethics

CBA Legal Futures Initiative Consultation Report Available

The Canadian Bar Association has today released its Legal Futures Initiative Report on the Consultation. The Initiatives project began consulting with the various stakeholders in June of last year, and the resulting report:

describes what the Legal Futures Initiative heard from stakeholders about the experience of being a lawyer in a changing environment, evolving client relationships, and views on the future. This is all synthesized to provide the key themes and novel ideas that emerged.

The final report of the Legal Futures Initiative is expected in August of 2014.

As might have been expected from a profession so diverse . . . [more]

Posted in: Announcements, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Thursday Thinkpiece: ABA on Legal Education

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.

ABA Task Force on the Future of Legal Education, January 2014

Excerpt: pp. 22-28


The Task Force has identified the following nine themes as guides for the efforts of all participants in

. . . [more]
Posted in: Thursday Thinkpiece

Open Access, Free Access to Law and Access to Canadian Legal Scholarship (Part 2)

[This is the second of a two-part column on open access and public access to Canadian legal scholarship. The first part is available here.]

There is an overwhelming public good and social benefit to be obtained from open access publishing. The principle that the results of research that has been publicly funded should be freely accessible in the public domain is itself a compelling one, and fundamentally unanswerable. Arguments in support of mandatory open access publishing are even more compelling when the university is a public one and the researcher’s salary is supported by public funds. The US National . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information