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Archive for September, 2014

Summaries Sunday: Maritime Law Book

Summaries of selected recent cases are provided each week to Slaw by Maritime Law Book. Every Sunday we present a precis of the latest summaries, a fuller version of which can be found on MLB-Slaw Selected Case Summaries at cases.slaw.ca.

This week’s summaries concern:
Aliens/ Civil Rights / Constitutional Law / Criminal Law / Narcotic Control / Landlord and Tenant

McAteer et al. v. Canada (Attorney General) 2014 ONCA 578
Aliens – Civil Rights – Constitutional Law – Statutes

Summary: The applicants claimed that the requirement in the Citizenship Act (ss. 3(1)(c), 12(3) and 24) that they swear

. . . [more]
Posted in: Summaries Sunday

The Friday Fillip: Well-Being

I get a really rather shameful pulse of pride when some organization releases a ranking of nations along one scale or another, showing Canada at or near the top. Shameful, for one thing, because comparisons, even at the level of nation states, are odious (and perhaps also “oderous” as Shakespeare joked). And for another thing because they’re typically based on a combination of loose judgements that would baffle even an expert in Bayseian theory.

Most recently, the OECD has published a Regional Well-Being website:

This interactive site allows you to measure well-being in your region and compare it with 300

. . . [more]
Posted in: The Friday Fillip

A Crisis of International Law

My columns are largely about international trends and innovation around justice delivery at the national level. But I am an international lawyer. On holiday in Tuscany I am able to digest (as opposed to take in) the news about the tsunami of peace & security crises the world is now facing: Russia, Ukraine and the tragedy of MH17, the Israel-Gaza war, the war in Syria, and the conquests by ISIS. A propos: we have an economic and global-warming crisis as well. All this has me deeply worried about the very idea of international law.

Mark Mazower’s impressive book Governing the . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Canadian Association of Law Libraries Live Tweet Chat on the CBA Legal Futures Initiative

The Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) is organizing a live “tweet chat” on Thursday, September 25 with Fred Headon, Past-President of the Canadian Bar Association and Chair of the CBA Legal Futures Initiative.

The live chat on Twitter will take place from 12 to 1PM EST and the topic will be “Does the CBA Futures Report provide opportunities for law librarians? ”

The CALL website has details on how interested law librarians (and others) can join the chat.

People can read more about the CBA Legal Futures Initiative on the CBA Futures website.

  . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Technologies Improve Access to Quebec Judicial System

Technologies are finally infiltrating the Quebec judiciary. These technologies are mean to improve the judicial system and public access to justice.
Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Technology, Technology: Internet

Thursday Thinkpiece: Chasse on Law Societies and Unaffordable Legal Services

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.

THE FAILURE OF LAW SOCIETIES TO ACCEPT THEIR DUTY IN LAW TO SOLVE THE UNAFFORDABLE LEGAL SERVICES PROBLEM
Ken Chasse

(Excerpt: pp. 1-3)

There are five propositions that Canada’s law societies must accept if their statements as to what they refer to as their “concern about the access to justice problem” are to . . . [more]

Posted in: Thursday Thinkpiece

Legal and Professional Publishing: Has It Become Desperately Dull?

I’m pretty certain that most people, partly under delusion, at some time express the view that things aren’t as good as they were in the past. It’s usually wrong, of course. However, looking at the world of legal and professionally publishing, I wonder if I’m correct in thinking that it used to be enormously pleasurable, rewarding and creative but now appears, with some exceptions, to be desperately dull?

Its dullness is reflected in its lack of innovation, its shift away from new product development and its failure to excite and engage with its customers and with its . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Online Dispute Resolution at UNCITRAL – Some Creativity Needed

The UNCITRAL Working Group on Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) meets next month in Vienna to continue discussion of model rules for international ODR. Here are the working documents for the meeting, and past meetings. .

The perspective of the project since its inception in 2010 has been to find a way to resolve high-volume, low-value disputes – not necessarily just consumer disputes, but many would be of this kind.

One of the problems has been to figure out a way to get both buyers and sellers into the ODR system, whatever it is (and there might be many such . . . [more]

Posted in: International issues, Justice Issues, ulc_ecomm_list

Making a Mark

From time to time, in each of our lives, someone enters and makes an indelible mark upon us. I’ve written here previously about some of those who have left marks on my life and influenced my career choices; another such person is Allan Fineblit, Q.C.

Allan is the outgoing CEO of The Law Society of Manitoba. He’s been the CEO of the Law Society of Manitoba (“LSM”) for some 16 years, through most of my years at the bar.

When I worked at the LSM, he was my boss. Nearly annually, I would sit down with him for a . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

CASL Software Provisions

CASL – the Canadian anti-spam legislation – contains provisions that require certain disclosure and permission requirements on the installation of software that does certain things, or when software does certain things. This aspect of CASL has been overshadowed by the anti-spam provisions, in part because the software provisions are not in effect until January 15, 2015.

Unfortunately these software provisions are not easy to comprehend or apply in practice. There is a lot of uncertainty around their interpretation. And IMHO they are going to cause far more harm than good. There is a real danger that some software creators will . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology

Ghostwriting of Law Firm Blogs – Unethical? Maybe. Bad Marketing? Definitely.

Recently, I’ve heard from more and more clients that they’ve been contacted by a website and digital services provider offering to not only build them a new website but to provide content for the blogs on their site. Now, I could write a whole article on their websites, pricing model, quality of usability and practice of “re-renting” websites (including the content), but that will need to wait for another day. What’s really on my mind is the trend towards the “ghostwriting” of lawyer blog posts that we’re starting to see here in Canada.

In this instance, “ghostwriting” is whereby a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

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. Craig, 2009 SCC 23, [2009] 1 SCR 762

[1] Abella J. — The issue in this appeal is how to apply the forfeiture provisions for offence-related real property under ss. 16(1) and 19.1(3) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, S.C. 1996, c. 19.* Two interpretive approaches are possible. Neither is free from difficulty, but one is, it seems . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII