Focus On
The Friday Brief

The Friday Brief: Managing Editor’s must-read items from this week

Friday, March 20, 2020 @ 3:51 PM | By Matthew Grace


Matthew Grace %>
Matthew Grace
Here are my picks for the top stories we published this week.

COVID-19 UPDATES
Free coverage from The Lawyer’s Daily on COVID-19 including, news, analysis, opinion and Insider items. This listing will continue to be updated with the newest items posted on top.

Criminal lawyers group urges courts to ‘implement systems’ for remote access in wake of COVID-19
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Criminal Lawyers’ Association (CLA) rallied its 1,500 members to volunteer and be present at every courthouse in Ontario over the past week. According to a release, the goal was to “secure the release of hundreds of persons who might otherwise have been at high risk of infection while incarcerated.” However, with the risk to counsel being real as well, CLA president John Struthers released a statement that said it is “with regret, and in order to protect our members and the public: The Criminal Lawyers’ Association has determined that we must have our volunteers leave all courthouses after Friday, March 20th at 12 noon.”

COVID-19: Family law going forward
In his column, Gary Joseph writes: “The rush to find alternate ways to assist clients is remarkable. The level of suffering from this pandemic is undeniable but for the family law bar, adversity has spawned a reinvigorated effort to find ways to move matters forward, creatively craft dispute resolution methods and work towards settlement.”

‘Limited practitioners’ needed for access to justice in Manitoba, says official
With the ever-increasing costs of legal services placing the hiring of lawyers beyond reach for more and more people, Manitoba’s law society is welcoming proposed legislation that would allow for “limited practitioners” in that province.

SCC affirms that forward contract was hedge; taxpayer’s intention is determined objectively
In a tax case of note to those engaged with the country’s multitrillion-dollar derivatives market, the Supreme Court of Canada has established a test for deciding whether a derivative instrument is a “hedge” for purposes of determining the income tax treatment of gains or losses.

Matthew Grace is the Managing Editor of The Lawyer’s Daily.