Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for November, 2022

Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and French-language cases have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about. La version française suit.

For this last week, the three most-consulted English-language decisions were:

1. Law Society of Saskatchewan v. Abrametz2022 SCC 29 (CanLII)

[137] This Court rightly recognized in Blencoe that inordinate delay — on its own — is a breach of the duty of fairness. In my view, courts should distance themselves from such procedural unfairness by calling it what it is: an abuse . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

School for Family Litigants Proves SRLs Desperate for Information and Support

Here at the National Self-Represented Litigants Project, we have spent the past 10 years trying (along with our other research and advocacy work) to provide support and information to litigants who find themselves self-representing in the family and civil justice systems. We have, among other efforts, published a growing collection of “Primers” (plain language guides) for self-represented litigants (SRLs), compiled a list of other organizations and resources that might be helpful to them, and maintained a Directory of lawyers (and other legal service providers) who offer lower-cost and alternative options such as unbundling and coaching. But for a long time . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues

Access to Justice and Legal Research Without Law Schools: The Case of Alaska

In the legal community within the United States, Alaska has a unique feature. With a population of over 700,000 people and rich in natural resources, the largest state in the country has no law school. This unique situation poses a number of salient issues and challenges which Alaskans have to deal with on a daily basis. Broadly speaking, not having a law school in Alaska affects access and preservation of the state’s legal history and its current development, accessibility to territorial archives, meaningful inclusion of underrepresented voices, knowledge of indigenous peoples’ legal traditions, navigating a complex legal system, remote communities’ . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

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. BC Estate Litigation Blog 2. Canadian Combat Sports Law Blog 3. BC Provincial Court eNews 4. Vancouver Immigration Law Blog 5. David Whelan

BC Estate Litigation Blog
Spousal Status in Estate Litigation: Who is a “Spouse” and Why Does it Matter?

A few weeks ago, I had

. . . [more]
Posted in: Monday’s Mix

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.

PÉNAL (DROIT) : Un adolescent déclaré coupable sous des chefs d’accusation d’homicide involontaire coupable, de voies de fait armées et de possession d’une arme dans un dessein dangereux se voit imposer une peine totale de 36 mois de détention, dont 26 mois seront purgés sous garde de façon continue, en . . . [more]

Posted in: Summaries Sunday

Friday Jobs Roundup

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:a

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

Low Ball Settlement Offer Costs Employer

Written by Daniel Standing LL.B., Editor, First Reference Inc.

In his brief reasons for the decision on a motion concerning costs, Justice Frederick Myers of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice didn’t mince words. Focused squarely on issues of fairness and access to justice, the judge awarded significant costs to the plaintiff in a wrongful dismissal matter while providing clear guidance to employers about how to handle such situations.

The decision in Court File Number CV-20-00646993 followed a written hearing at the end of October 2022. The judge noted that the litigation was all about money, and it wasn’t the . . . [more]

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

It’s Time to Create Your 2023 Personal Plan

Typically, lawyers work from 40 – 80 hours per week. If they are able to bill out 2/3rds of that time, they are lucky (or organized). But it could be better. The difference between billed work and the rest of that time is often wasted or at least under-utilized time. That’s because most lawyers don’t have a clear sense of what they want to achieve in a year, a month, a weak, a day. They might know generally, but wishes don’t move mountains. Plans do.

As a lawyer coach, I NEVER forget that time a lawyer spends working, learning, marketing . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing, Practice of Law

Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and French-language cases have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about. La version française suit.

For this last week, the three most-consulted English-language decisions were:

1. Enviro Hazmat Emergency Response Inc. v Olson2018 ABPC 286

[4] Some motorists prefer to deal with the original manufacturer rather than buy aftermarket replacement parts. Part of the appeal with Ford parts, is that Ford guarantees their products. If an aftermarket product fails, the remedy is with the company who made . . . [more]

Posted in: Wednesday: What's Hot on CanLII

Solicitor-Client Privilege Is Sacred . . . Except When It Isn’t

Solicitor-client privilege is the strongest privilege protected under law but at times lawyers’ honour it in the breach. In Canada, the Privilege has been elevated to constitutional or quasi-constitutional status in many circumstances. In fact, the Supreme Court has accorded the Privilege stronger protection than most Charter rights because it is not subject to the reasonable limits test of section 1. In the course of researching my book Solicitor-Client Privilege, I came to realize that in Canada the Privilege enjoys higher status and stronger judicial protection than in virtually any other country. That’s why I came to refer to . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Ethics

Professional Conduct on Social Media for Lawyers

Twitter permits (nearly) anyone to broadcast their views on whatever is going on around them, whether a recent Supreme Court decision or the latest Taylor Swift album, as soon as the thought pops into their head.

For lawyers with an active Twitter presence (most of whom identify themselves as lawyers in their bios), the line between the personal and professional realm can be blurry. Tweets about cases and developments in the law are readily interspersed with tweets about the Blue Jays’ roster moves and the latest episode of The White Lotus. It’s easy to slip out of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Ethics

Going Grey and Facing Age Discrimination: Moving Towards an International Treaty on the Rights of Older Persons

Concerns for the wellbeing of older persons are rarely framed as human rights issues entrenched in age discrimination. This may now be changing after the shocking revelations of maltreatment and excess deaths of older persons in Canadian care homes in 2020.

The abuses exposed in 2020 were predictable consequences of Canada’s longstanding neglect of older persons’ fundamental rights. Decades of efforts by Canadian civil society organizations (CSOs) along with international CSOs, and UN human rights bodies may now be gaining traction in a drive for a United Nations (UN) treaty to spell out and guarantee the fundamental human rights of . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues