Focus On



Friday, February 18, 2022 @ 12:22 PM

‘Freedom convoys’ and risks of online agitation | Heather MacIvor

As these words are written, the Emergencies Act (the Act) has been invoked and the blockade of Parliament Hill is coming to an end. Police are arresting the holdouts and taking down their logistics camp in the parking lot of a suburban stadium. Banks are freezing protesters’ assets and their donors are being traced.   ... [read more]

Friday, February 18, 2022 @ 11:42 AM

Constitutional problems of modern democracy | Julius Grey

When comparing different political systems, neither Plato nor Aristotle had much good to say about democracy. Essentially they saw three serious weaknesses — the inevitable domination by the wealthy, the endemic corruption and the danger of factionalism. All three of these dangers are still present in modern western democracy to the point that many consider democracy as a model in decline. Given the egalitarian ideology of our society, some will view the fear of undue influence of the rich as exaggerated. They should think again. ... [read more]

Friday, February 18, 2022 @ 9:07 AM

Confidentiality in mediation | Stuart Rudner

Mediation is a confidential process, right? Everything you put in your briefs, everything you say during the session(s) — we always say it is without prejudice and can’t be used against you.   ... [read more]

Thursday, February 17, 2022 @ 1:05 PM

The flaw in family law paralegal licences | Robert Shawyer

Last fall, on behalf of over 50 members of the family law bar in Ontario, I wrote a response to the Law Society of Ontario’s Family Legal Services Provider Licence Consultation that was released for review and comment on June 26, 2020. While the response I wrote was acknowledged, as were the submissions from 39 other organizations, in the LSO Report on Family Legal Services Provider Licence released on Jan. 21, 2022, it was ignored in favour of what appears to be a predetermined outcome to license paralegals to practise family law. ... [read more]

Thursday, February 17, 2022 @ 12:37 PM

Second opinions | Gabriel Latner

Fred Smith (FE to history) was a “bon-vivant” back in the day when, if you were rich enough, unchecked alcoholism was just a charming quirk. One night in 1907, he checked into London’s Savoy Hotel and proceeded to order a staggering quantity of champagne and oysters, to sustain him as he read through a deep stack of legal papers. ... [read more]

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 @ 1:49 PM

Importance of good relations with opposing counsel | Gary Joseph

This is a continuation of my series of articles that I earlier classified as “do as I say not as I do.” I wish I could classify them as “do as I do” but the sad reality is that is not the case. ... [read more]

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 @ 11:21 AM - Last Updated: Thursday, March 03, 2022 @ 1:59 PM

Law society leaves Superior Court in its dust | Michael Lesage

Nearly a decade ago, Justice David Brown warned of the dangers of operating Ontario’s “courts like some kind of fossilized Jurassic Park” (Bank of Montreal v. Faibish [2014] O.J. No. 1639). His warning went unheeded, and the Superior Court stumbled along. Performance was about as could be expected, with long delays in family and civil cases and hundreds of criminal cases being dismissed annually for delay. Then COVID-19 hit, and the entire house of cards came tumbling down. It must have been an embarrassing time to be a senior justice of the Ontario Superior Court.   ... [read more]

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 @ 9:29 AM

Time to listen to Office of Correctional Investigator | John L. Hill

The latest report of the Office of the Correctional Investigator (OCI) was released earlier this month. Like annual reports delivered to the minister in charge of Canada’s correctional services, this year’s report contained disturbing statistics of inequities that are continuing behind the walls and fences of Canadian prisons. ... [read more]

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 @ 1:06 PM

How far would you go to increase social media ‘likes’? | Lia Douglas

Nowadays, increasing the number of social media “likes” is top of mind for many. Inviting strangers to gaze into our personal lives is no longer considered taboo. From sharing our gym workouts to our fav lunch spot, down to our personal hygiene routines, nothing is off-limits, it seems. Social media platforms have taken the private world and placed it on the world stage pretty much overnight — nothing is too far from the virtual eye. ... [read more]

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 @ 9:36 AM

Whose rule? And is it the rule of law, politics or power? | Stephen O’Neill

“Mr. Parker, you’re here to be sentenced for robbery, and you’re unrepresented. Crown counsel is asking for a four-year penitentiary term. And as you know, a robbery conviction carries a potential for life in prison.” ... [read more]