Focus On



Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 3:22 PM

Conflicts of interest in family law mediation and arbitration: Guidance Conflict of interest arrows

Where does a family mediator or arbitrator look for guidance if there is a reasonable risk of a conflict of interest? It depends. ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 1:08 PM

Defamation law reform in Ontario defamation_law_sm

In March of this year, the Law Commission of Ontario released its Final Report on Defamation Law in the Internet Age. The report is the product of months of research and expert consultations, resulting in three broad recommendations from the commission, based on Seven Principles Guiding Defamation Law Reform. ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 1:02 PM

Prohibition of compelled DNA testing upheld geneticengineering.jpg

In the case of Canadian Coalition for Genetic Fairness v. Attorney General (Canada) and Attorney General (Quebec) 2020 SCC 17, the Supreme Court upheld the provisions of the Genetic Non-Discrimination Act as a valid exercise of the criminal law powers under s. 91 of the Constitution Act, 1867. In a 3-2-4 decision the majority concurred in upholding the legislation but for different reasons. “By protecting choices about who has access to such information, the legislation reduces the risk of genetic discrimination.” (para. 56). ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 1:00 PM

Tax concerns for Canadians selling U.S. real estate House for sale

As the U.S. dollar has strengthened and travel continues to become more difficult, Canadians are increasingly selling U.S. real estate. Others are looking to gift a property, downsize or upgrade. Regardless of the reason, Canadians need to be aware of some obstacles that slow down sales or have adverse tax consequences. ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 12:49 PM

Lender options for super-priority GST/HST liens: Title insurance, litigation Moneycomingfromhouse.jpg

My colleague, Pallett Valo LLP lawyer Steven Pordage, was recently interviewed by The Lawyer’s Daily regarding his article on the concerning implications of April’s Toronto-Dominion Bank v. Canada 2020 FCA 80 decision. In addition to discussing the case’s fearsome spectre of increased lender liability, he mentions how title insurance can mitigate risks associated with super-priority GST/HST liens. Such liens may take priority over registered mortgages in power of sale (POS) proceedings, which further exacerbate shortfalls in recovery funds typically available to lenders. ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 11:12 AM

Waksdale: Termination pendulum swings back hands

Employers have become accustomed to decisions by the courts concerning the enforceability of provisions in employment agreements limiting entitlements on termination to something less than common law (and often to minimum entitlements under provincial employment standards legislation). Specifically, the idea that parties are in a position to negotiate, agree upon and execute an agreement setting out the terms and conditions of their employment has been replaced with a “post-game” review of technical compliance with the provisions of provincial employment standards legislation. ... [read more]

Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 8:38 AM

The beneficiary witness: Relevant cases witness_signature_sm

As we discussed in the first article in this series, a growing practice in Ontario is for people to download a will kit and make their own wills, which may result in common mistakes. This article will discuss relevant cases dealing with a beneficiary witness. ... [read more]

Thursday, July 09, 2020 @ 11:22 AM

Temporary layoffs, recalling employees back to work in Quebec quebecflaginsunlight

In order to survive the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses in Quebec laid off a substantial percentage of their workforce. In this time of uncertainty, it is important to understand the legal framework of layoffs in Quebec in order to allow companies to be equipped to call their employees back to work or legally terminate those employees permanently. ... [read more]

Thursday, July 09, 2020 @ 8:53 AM

Dos and don’ts of co-parenting during COVID-19 Parent drops off child

Co-parenting can be challenging even in the best of circumstances. Throw in a global pandemic and you get complete disruption in normalcy and routines that parents crave. With increased security measures put in place to ensure public safety, adjustments between households with shared custody and access arrangements have to be made. ... [read more]

Thursday, July 09, 2020 @ 8:43 AM

Death and taxes: Plan now, save later tax_piggeybank_sm

There may be few things in this world that are more certain than death and taxes but, in both Canada and the U.S., planning can determine how much a decedent’s estate pays. ... [read more]