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Archive for December, 2014

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 technology, research and practice.

Technology

Avoid Data Disasters by Properly Ejecting USB Devices Before You Remove Them*
Dan Pinnington

How many of you take the time to “eject” your USB devices before you remove them? I know some of you didn’t raise your hand. Does it really matter? Yes it does. Why? Because you can end up with corrupt data if you yank a device out while data is still being written to it… . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

To Tenure, or to Not Tenure – That Is the Question

Tenure is one of those sticky academic topics. Those on the outside of the acadame wonder why anyone would or should be granted a “job for life.” On the inside, the question was not “if” we should have tenure, but “who.” Throughout the entirety of my career as an Academic Law Librarian and Legal Research Professor, my colleagues and I debated with the question of whether or not we should be (1) tenure track and, if so, (2) considered part of the law school faculty and invited to participate in the governance of the school.

At the time, I held . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Education

Avoiding Communciations Claims in Real Estate

No matter what the area of practice, the number one source of claims at LAWPRO is a breakdown in communication between the lawyer and client.

Between 2008 and 2013, nearly 4,600 communications claims – an average of 762 a year – have been reported to LAWPRO. The total cost of these claims to date is about $158 million – and likely to rise as more recent years’ claims are resolved.

In the Fall 2011 issue of LAWPRO Magazine we asked LAWPRO claims counsel with expertise in the various areas of law to provide insights into the communications mistakes they see . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended

When Lawyers May Not Be the Best Appointments to the Supreme Court

Jian Ghomeshi just hired a brilliant and fearless “shark” of a lawyer, Marie Henein, to defend him against criminal assault charges. There is a school of thought in legal ethics that maintains Henein is professionally obliged to play by the criminal defense playbook, right up to the point of transgression, and directly or indirectly enter the complainants’ sexual histories into evidence. If she can also get their medical records and the clinical notes of their therapists in, she must put all personal moral qualms aside and do everything within the confines of the law to get her client off. It’s . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Miscellaneous

Schema.org and the W3C Bibliographic Extension Group

The Semantic Web in Libraries (SWIB) annual conference took place last week in Bonn, Germany. This event set out to:

“… provide substantial information on LOD developments relevant to the library world and to foster the exchange of ideas and experiences among practitioners. SWIB encourages thinking outside the box by involving participants and speakers from other domains, such as scholarly communications, museums and archives, or related industries.”

And it looks like they’ve done a good job fulfilling that aim. Thankfully the sessions were live-streamed so I was able to participate at least in a small way and, even better, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

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 sixty 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. Slater Vecchio Connected 2. Canadian Securities Law 3. The Court 4. Lee Akazaki 5. Rule of Law

Slater Vecchio Connected
10 Holiday Hosting Safety Tips

Making sure your guests stay safe this holiday season is just as important as finding the right décor. Under the Occupiers Liability Act, home . . . [more]

Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Legal Citation: Beyond the McGill Guide

This past summer, the Canadian legal profession was presented with yet another edition of the Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation/Manuel canadien de la référence juridique, aka the McGill Guide. This new edition, the 8th in 28 years (an average of one edition every 4 years since its first publication in 1986) was expected, though not anticipated with any enthusiasm. Fellow Slaw columnist Susannah Treadwell has recently posted a review of the work. It seems to me that the changes to the previous edition are few, inconsistent, and not obviously necessary (Another colleague has told me that . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Law Reform Commission Reports: Recent Releases

As I like to tell users who come to my library, law reform commission reports can be a legal researcher’s best friend.

Law commissions consult widely with stakeholders, they may compare how other jurisdictions have dealt with the same problem that has you stumped and they frequently dig into the history of an issue.

Here are a few recently released reports that caught my attention.

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Intrusion Upon Medical Records

When the new tort of the intrusion upon seclusion first emerged in 2012 in Jones v. Tsige, many of us wondered how exactly it would be invoked in litigation. Many of us assumed reasonably that this would be an additional head of damages claimed, given the modest amount recognized by the court as reasonable for privacy breaches.

Since that time we have seen this tort employed in several cases with varying success. One of the more intriguing applications is where these small heads of damages can be advanced in the aggregate, namely in through class proceedings.

The ideal scenario . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

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:
Civil Rights – Criminal Law – Indians, Inuit and Métis – Contracts – Practice

R. v. Pardy (T.) 2014 NLCA 37
Civil Rights – Criminal Law – Crown – Government Programs – Statutes
Summary: The accused was charged with first degree murder, using a firearm in the commission of an offence, and, being a . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Cowboy Cops in Quebec

For those readers who don’t follow labour disputes in Quebec, there’s been trouble brewing over the Province’s attempts to reign in municipal pension costs via Bill 3. Because Quebec (and all other provincial) labour laws don’t allow “essential services” unions to strike (not surprisingly, because people could die), police, EMT and firefighter unions have been trying creative ways to get their point across. In the Municipality of Chateaugay (just outside of Montreal), the police force has taken to wearing cowboy outfits (photo credit here):

Not surprisingly, the Municipality protested and filed a grievance. Yesterday, the Quebec Labour Relations Board . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

The Friday Fillip: Modding Things

Nothing works the way it’s supposed to. At least it can seem like that sometimes. And the things in our life have been fractious long before they were also chip-driven. You can bet that the homo erectus who carved this lovely pattern into a shell more than half a million years ago had more than one shark tooth scribe split or crack or just plain resist the plan. And it doesn’t bear thinking how many stone axe heads have flown off at critical junctures over the millennia.

Things, as we all know, have minds of their own, typically modelled on . . . [more]

Posted in: The Friday Fillip