Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for May, 2019

Effective Referral Policy Upheld in Ontario

Following the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Carter v. Canada, amendments to the Criminal Code and other statutes allowed for some instances of physician-assisted death to be used in Canada. These amendments received Royal Assent through Bill C-14 on June 17, 2016, through what is now called Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD).

The fourth and final interim report on MAiD by the Government of Canada confirmed that 6,749 medically assisted deaths occurred in Canada since legislation came into force on December 10, 2015 in Quebec, and on June 17, 2016 in the rest of Canada, to October 31, . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

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.

RESPONSABILITÉ : Le fabricant pharmaceutique s’est déchargé de son obligation d’information en mettant en garde adéquatement les intermédiaires compétents, c’est-à-dire les pharmaciens et les médecins, des risques d’effets secondaires de nature neuropsychiatrique en lien avec la prise du médicament Biaxin.

Intitulé : Brousseau c. Laboratoires Abbott limitée, 2019 QCCA 801 . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Friday Roundup: Slaw Jobs

Each Friday, we share the latest job listings from Slaw Jobs, which features employment opportunities from across the country. Find out more about these positions by following the links below, or learn how you can use Slaw Jobs to gain valuable exposure for your job ads, while supporting the great Canadian legal commentary at

Current postings on Slaw Jobs (newest first):

. . . [more]
Posted in: Friday Jobs Roundup

The Death of the Reference Collection

It was a slow death. I should have seen it coming. First, the reference collection was right across from the reference desk – visible, in plain sight, and easy to get to. There were all these reference tools right there, in physical form. And then we weeded the reference collection. Moved some books to the regular stacks, and the remaining collection away into the main reading room area, so it took multiple, intentional steps to consult the books therein. And so it came to pass. The collection gathered dust as we forgot them or found other ways to obtain the . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Vote for the 2019 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction

Members of the public can help determine the winner of the 2019 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

The prize, which is sponsored by ABA Journal and the University of Alabama School of Law, is “given annually to a book-length work of fiction that best illuminates the role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change.”

It was established in 2011 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the publication of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

The three finalists this year are:

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues

Book Review: Guthrie’s Guide to Better Legal Writing

Several times each month, we are pleased to republish a recent book review from the Canadian Law Library Review (CLLR). CLLR is the official journal of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL/ACBD), and its reviews cover both practice-oriented and academic publications related to the law.

Guthrie’s Guide to Better Legal Writing. By Neil Guthrie. Toronto: Irwin Law, 2018. xviii, 182p. Includes bibliographic references and index. ISBN 978-1-55221-472-5 (softcover) $55.00. ISBN 978-1-55221-473-2 (PDF) $55.00.

Reviewed by Nicholas Jobidon
Professeur de droit public
École nationale d’administration publique
In CLLR 43:3

Neil Guthrie’s Guide to Better Legal Writing . . . [more]

Posted in: Book Reviews

Registering Documents With CIPO

A frequent interaction with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office is the registering of documents ‎against pending or granted patents and trademarks. Assignments of intellectual property rights, changes of corporate ‎name, reorganizations and security interests are all commonly registered. As part of changes expected ‎later this year, this practice is likely to change, reducing some formalities.

For the approximately 23,000 patents granted in 2018, around 20,000 of these types of documents ‎were registered. With a government fee of $100 per document, around $2 million in government fees ‎were paid to register various documents against the granted patents. ‎

‎Currently, for patents, . . . [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. Reference re Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, 2019 SKCA 40

[66] There is little legal merit in Saskatchewan’s specific concern about Parliament conditioning the application of a federal law on whether a province has chosen to exercise its own jurisdiction. This is because of a very simple point. Parliament can only act within its own sphere of legislative authority. Thus, if . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

In Praise of the Honourable Justice Clement Gascon

Recently, the Honourable Justice Clement Gascon of the Supreme Court of Canada addressed his momentary absence from work on May 8th, 2019.

For over twenty years, I have been dealing with a sometimes insidious illness: depression and anxiety disorders. This is an illness that can be treated and controlled, some days better than others. On the afternoon of Wednesday, May 8, affected both by the recent announcement of a difficult and heart-rending career decision and by a change in medication, I conducted myself in an unprecedented and unaccustomed manner by going out without warning and remaining out of touch for

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

Applying Habeas Corpus in Immigration Cases: Bringing Nuance to the Jurisprudence?

Although the ancient writ of habeas corpus is a significant protection against arbitrary detention (more recently acknowledged through section 10(c) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms), our courts have developed two circumstances in which it is not available because other remedies are equally effective, providing the same advantages to those who would claim it. Thus prisoners are not able to call on habeas corpus to challenge their conviction or sentence, since they can adequately appeal both under the Criminal Code. Habeas corpus is also displaced when a statutory scheme provides equivalent protection against arbitrary detention. Canada . . . [more]

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

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.


A New Cloud Computing Guide From the LSS
Greg Hluska – Law Society of Saskatchewan Library

Cloud. You’ve heard the term, perhaps wondered what it really meant and maybe even worried about it. ‘The cloud’ is just a marketing term that means the internet. So, if you see the term ‘cloud storage’, it means ‘store your documents on the internet’. …

Research & Writing

Trite Law
Neil Guthrie . . . [more]

Posted in: Tips Tuesday

It’s Springtime in Washington, DC

The cherry blossoms are finished this season, but new information continues to come out from U.S. government sources. I may have been hibernating over the winter, but my colleagues at the Law Library of Congress have been very active. Their November posts included many updates to and in December they celebrated the sixth anniversary of with an annual over view update.

Their January post featured the “Unified Congressional Committee Calendar, where you can quickly view all of the House and Senate committee meetings and hearings scheduled for a given week or day”. February’s post includes . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information