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The Friday Brief

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

Friday, May 15, 2020 @ 3:00 PM | By Matthew Grace


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

Litigators’ champion celebrates five years at SCC, looks forward to five more years
On a bench otherwise made up of ex-law deans, former senior civil servants and longtime judges, Justice Suzanne Côté’s unique brief, handed to her when she was appointed five years ago, requires her to convey the practising bar’s perspective to the Supreme Court of Canada, even when it sometimes takes her down solitary paths.

Access to Justice: Visionary thinking to update a legacy system
In her column, The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin writes: “A strong and efficient justice system is central to democratic governance and to social stability. We have a good justice system. But we have known for a long time that the system, modelled on Victorian modes of doing business, was under stress.”

Courts Zoom ahead with remote hearings due to pandemic, despite concerns of some lawyers, litigants
Citing the importance of preserving access to justice and the rule of law during the COVID-19 pandemic, courts up to the Supreme Court of Canada are pushing ahead with remote virtual hearings — notwithstanding privacy, procedural fairness and other objections raised by counsel and litigants in some cases.

SCC addresses third-party litigation funding, key issues in Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act
The Supreme Court of Canada has spoken for the first time on the legality of third-party litigation funding agreements, in unanimous reasons for judgment that also shed new light on many aspects of the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) — the federal statute which enables the reorganization of insolvent debtor companies facing claims in excess of $5 million.

Integrity, security key factors for online licensing exams, says LSO exec
The Law Society of Ontario (LSO) is transitioning to an online delivery model for its licensing exams in an effort to assist candidates during the COVID-19 pandemic. The law society acknowledged that social distancing rules may not be altered soon, making an in-person exam challenging.

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