Since the onset of the pandemic in March of this year, municipalities across the country have instituted policies and by-laws that have had a serious impact on residents, often not following regular processes. The University of Windsor Faculty of Law Centre for Cities has recently released its report about municipal states of emergency, States of Emergency (“the Report”), co-authored by Dr. Anneke Smit (Director, Centre for Cities) and students Hana Syed, Aucha Stewart, Terra Duchene, and Michael Fazzari, which analyses the response of municipalities across Canada in the early days of the pandemic and proposes a way forward, not only . . . [more]
Archive for ‘Reading’
The COVID-19 has been a boon for novel and unique issues in law.
While there have been widely reported concerns about women academics being less productive during the pandemic than men, likely due to unequal divisions of labour at home such as childcare, the intersecting impacts of gender, race and parenthood on academic productivity illustrate a broader and more complex factors, but ones that could have long-term career implications.
The necessity to rapidly share scientific information during a pandemic has also accelerated a shift towards more open-access publications. Removing paywalls facilitates a better flow of information and knowledge transfer, and . . . [more]
Investing in Justice – A Literature Review in Support of the Case for Improved Access, recently released by the Canadian Forum on Civil Justice, summarizes the “existing research and data on return on investment for justice services provided by civil society organizations, governments and private sector groups to communities and diverse populations worldwide”. (Disclosure: I sit on the Board of Directors of the CFCJ.) . . . [more]
“If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.”
In The Atlantic article “The Needless Complexity of Academic Writing“, the author Victoria Clayton critiques opaque writing that infects academic journals. She writes that the prose is “riddled with professional jargon and needlessly complex syntax… even someone with a Ph.D. can’t understand a fellow Ph.D.’s work unless he or she comes from the very same discipline.” This critique could easily be applied to legal writing, including some factums and judicial decisions.
Clayton explains that the main reason for opaque writing may not be so sinister. She . . . [more]
This post originally appeared on the OsgoodePD Blog.
Technology has had a fundamental effect on most professions. It has standardized and simplified processes, removed labour intensive elements, and increased efficiency of how products and services are developed and sold. Most importantly, it has made it necessary for those in the profession to adapt and change who does the work, what the work is, and how the work is done.
Law and the practice of law has, in many ways, remained relatively untouched. That is until now!
Yes, computers and email have transformed how lawyers communicate and do their work, . . . [more]
The human memory is crucial to a trial. It is the essence of a lay person’s testimony. So where does memory come from?
In the Organized Mind neuroscientist Daniel Levitin explains.
. . . [more]
When we experience an event, a unique set of neurons is activated. The act of remembering something is a process of bringing back on line those neurons that were involved in the original experience… Once we get those neurons to become active in a fashion similar to how they were during the original event, we experience the memory as a lower-resolution replay of the original event. If only we
This article is by Jordan Nichols, claims counsel at LAWPRO.
It is one of a lawyer’s worst nightmares: missing a limitation period. It can be a very easy mistake to make and yet the consequences can be enormous.
There are numerous “pitfalls” that can lead to missed limitation periods and other limitation period problems. Some of these pitfalls are relatively easy to avoid whereas others can trip up even the most skilled and careful of lawyers.
The following is an overview of some of the more common limitation period pitfalls that lawyers encounter and some tips on how to avoid . . . [more]
This article is by Ian Hu, claims prevention & practicePRO counsel at LAWPRO.
Young lawyers often talk about the stress and burden of debt. If there is one piece of advice worth giving, it is a simple one: spend less than you earn.
As a new lawyer, I was excited when I received my first paycheque. I forget what I spent it on, but I remember it disappeared as soon as I received it. Soon I was living paycheque to paycheque. How could it be possible to live hand to mouth on Bay Street?
Turns out, it was easy. Perry . . . [more]
How Neuroscience Awareness and Evolutionary Psychology Can Help Lawyers Avoid Claims and Offer Better Client Service
This article is by Nora Rock, corporate writer and policy analyst at LAWPRO.
The success of books like Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink and Norman Doidge’s The Brain that Changes Itself, has brought discussion of neuroscience out of the medical lab and into everyday conversation. The potential for what we know about the brain to be used to our advantage in the business and professional realms has spurred a growing body of research, and lawyers are beginning to pay attention.
From LawPRO’s perspective, the most interesting implication of this research is that a basic understanding of neuroscience may provide lawyers . . . [more]
In Christie Blatchford’s book Life Sentence: Stories from four decades of court reporting – or, how I fell out of love with the Canadian justice system, Blatchford critiques the judicial system. Her critique is centred on her personal experiences and on several court cases.
In particular, she recalls an exchange she had with a lawyer, while observing a trial. During their conversation, she accidentally cited the wrong case when he immediately corrected her. Stating that “in those few minutes was illustrated so much that is enraging about the broader justice system: Its collective overweening self-satisfaction; its increasing deference to the . . . [more]
This article is by Ian Hu, claims prevention and practicePRO counsel at LAWPRO.
Understanding cognitive biases can help reduce communication-related claims, which are the biggest source of malpractice claims. While many cognitive biases are dealt with by following some common sense principles, others are not as obvious. From anchoring effect to decision fatigue, knowing how your client makes decisions can help you build rapport with your clients, effectively give recommendations, and help ensure you and your client are on the same page.
1. Let your clients make a good decision –decision fatigue
Decision fatigue has perhaps the highest profile of . . . [more]
This article is by Nora Rock, corporate writer & policy analyst at LAWPRO.
The last time you bought a house or searched for a rental apartment, how did you choose, and how did you feel about your choice afterward?
Psychologists studying the relationship between how we make choices and our life satisfaction have found that those who put the greatest effort into making choices are rewarded with less happiness.
In his book The Paradox of Choice, Dr. Barry Schwartz, a professor of psychology from Pennsylvania sorts decision-makers into two broad categories. “Satisficers” settle promptly on the first option that . . . [more]