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Archive for September, 2018

Here Be Unchartered Waters


This week has been an unprecedented one in Canadian history, and one that will invariably result in development of novel Charter jurisprudence.

On Sept. 12, 2018, the Ontario legislature introduced Bill 31 – Efficient Local Government Act, 2018 in response to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision on Sept. 10, 2018 that ruled Bill 5 – Better Local Government Act, 2018 was unconstitutional, as it violated the s. 2(b) Charter rights of the candidates in the upcoming municipal election due to the timing of the Bill, and the impact on the voters due to its content.[1] This . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

More Devices Gone Wild

A continuing series of interesting ways that things can go wrong with information technology. Previous installments are here and here.

Devices Gone Wild IV: Hacking Critical Infrastructure through the IoT.

Critical infrastructure is of course infrastructure – communications, power, transportation – that we depend on to support how we live: not just our ‘lifestyle’ but often our life itself.

One may ask why infrastructure of any kind is connected to the notoriously vulnerable Internet at all, but it is (in some places) – for reasons of remote monitoring and control, coordination, effectiveness. A good deal of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology

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.

PROFESSIONS : Le Barreau du Québec et la Chambre des notaires du Québec échouent en appel du jugement de la Cour supérieure ayant rejeté leur requête en jugement déclaratoire et en injonction permanente dans laquelle ils prétendaient que les centres de traitement de prêts hypothécaires des sociétés d’assurances titres intimées . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

RegTech: A Quite Quiet Revolution

Last year, I took unexpected sabbatical leave. If one of my doctor’s specialties had been spin, they would have said I’ve pivoted. Now I focus on medical research and services including being an oncologist’s ontologist. I’m trying to disrupt the evolution of cancer, and the massive industry it supports.

My dot-joining skills allowed me to find a probable cure for cancer that others had discovered yet remain unnoticed. I’m one of a growing band of empowered patients facilitating change. The same is happening in the legal world according to Greg San Miguel, Founder of the award winning Law Of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

Length of Long-Term Disability Benefits Can Frustrate Employment Contract

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice recently held that the continued receipt of long-term disability benefits can legally frustrate an employment contract. . . . [more]

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

Western Journal of Legal Studies: Call for Submissions

The Western Journal of Legal Studies, a “student-run, online, open access law review focusing on contributions to Canadian law and international law” has put out a call for submissions:

Do you have an “A” level law paper? The Western Journal of Legal Studies is seeking academic research papers, white papers, opinion-editorials, and book reviews. All submissions received by Friday, September 28th will be considered for publication in our Fall issue. We assess submissions using a two-part blind peer review, and as such, all submissions will remain entirely anonymous throughout the process. Submissions received after this date will be considered

. . . [more]
Posted in: Announcements, Legal Information: Publishing

How Long Does It Take to Get a Patent?

I am often asked how long it will take to get their patent granted. The answer is, as with most questions asked of lawyers, “it depends”. Of the patents granted by the Canadian Patent Office in the first half of 2018, the time from filing to being granted ranged from less than 6 months (see CA2,976,719) to over 18 years (see CA2,360,927) – a huge range! Some of the time was outside the control of the patent applicant, such as due to backlog at the patent office, but there are many aspects of the patent process that affect . . . [more]

Posted in: Intellectual Property

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. Ruston v Keddco Mfg. (2011) Ltd., 2018 ONSC 5022

[2] The defendant does not dispute the plaintiff was successful in this action. Nor does it dispute that it was served with a Rule 49 offer at the same time as the Statement of Claim, and that the cost consequences as set out in Rule 49.10(1) of the Rules of Civil Procedure . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Electronic Documents in Civil and Administrative Proceedings: Uniform Rules

Electronic documents are everywhere these days, and that naturally means that they are in courtrooms. Getting them there has been a process of accommodation, law reform and arguably some wilful blindness as to the vulnerabilities of such documents.

An early effort at law reform was the Uniform Electronic Evidence Act adopted by the Uniform Law Conference of Canada in 1998 and enacted in several provinces and territories (e.g. Ontario) and at the federal level (Canada Evidence Act ss 31.1 – 31.8). The UEEA focused on the best evidence rule, which tends to require that parties produce an . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

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

Citing Case Law and Legislation
Susannah Tredwell

The 9th edition of the Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation (better known as the McGill Guide) was published earlier this summer. The most important change was no longer requiring a parallel citation in addition to a neutral citation. …


Minimize Email Triage Time
Luigi Benetton

Imagine if your email system could look like this at the end . . . [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. Eva Chan 2. Excess Copyright 3. Administrative Law Matters 4. McElroy Law Blog 5. Michael Geist

Eva Chan
A Smartphone Tip for Social Media

Would you like a faster way to type text you often use in your LinkedIn invitations to connect? Or to include hashtags you

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

Marketing Technology: What’s That?

Back when I started in Law Firm Marketing, the IT department was God and Marketing was a vestigial part of Admin. Everything that didn’t earn fees was dumped in Marketing. We took care of golf tournaments, firm giveaways, and oh yes, holiday cards. We didn’t decide what events would be run or newsletters issued; we just did what we were told. Many of us could scarcely keep from muttering, “Did you want fries with that?” as we left a meeting.

IT, on the other hand, decided what software the firm would use, what hardware to run it on, and what . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing