Focus On



Thursday, March 04, 2021 @ 9:15 AM

Agenda offers ‘roadmap to action’ on revamping justice system in British Columbia: bar association CBABC president Jennifer Brun

Despite the watershed (and much-needed) change foisted on the justice sector as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Canadian Bar Association, B.C. Branch (CBABC) says much more needs to be done to improve access to the system. It has now set out a plan of action for the province to achieve that goal. The CBABC’s Agenda for Justice 2021 offers more than 40 recommendations in 22 key areas and essentially runs the gamut of the entire justice system, from legal aid to court modernization to contracts. ... [read more]

Wednesday, March 03, 2021 @ 2:01 PM

In defence of B.C.’s pronoun practice directives | Brad Regehr and Jennifer Brun

The rights of transgender and non-binary persons to equality and dignity are not open to debate — they are a matter of law. ... [read more]

Wednesday, March 03, 2021 @ 10:11 AM

Newcomers need smart planning to manage non-resident real estate taxes House on top of money

Southern Ontario has one of the hottest and most reliable real estate markets in the world, but non-residents who seek to invest face a special tax that can be a barrier. It takes smart planning for prospective investors to manage this barrier. ... [read more]

Wednesday, March 03, 2021 @ 8:37 AM

Biden’s immigration bill: What it says, where it stands Open door in a U.S. flag

President Joe Biden’s sweeping immigration bill — known as the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 — was formally introduced in the House on Feb. 18, 2021, by Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) and in the Senate on Feb. 22, 2021, by Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.). The legislation calls for broad immigration reform, including an eight-year pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, an increase in the number of available visas and greater protections for participants of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, known as “Dreamers.” According to White House officials, the expansive bill was designed to “[establish] a new system to responsibly manage and secure our border, keep our families and communities safe, and better manage migration across the Hemisphere.” ... [read more]

Tuesday, March 02, 2021 @ 9:18 AM

Time to study ‘very serious’ issue of secret evidence use in court, senator says Sen. Marc Gold

A Canadian senator is saying it is overdue for policymakers to look at the rules surrounding the use and disclosure of secret evidence gathered by intelligence agencies like the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) in court. ... [read more]

Monday, March 01, 2021 @ 1:20 PM

Black history month: Going beyond statements of support | Charlene Theodore

The Ontario Bar Association’s Black History Month campaign, #StandingOnTheShouldersOfGiants, celebrated the Black lawyers who paved pathways — those tireless champions who have for decades fought the never-ending and often lonely fight for equality and inclusion in the profession. It is on their shoulders I stand as the first Black president of the OBA. I thank them and I am proud to say that their legacy is reflected in the work and the diversity of our members.    ... [read more]

Monday, March 01, 2021 @ 9:37 AM

OFFENCES AND ENFORCEMENT - Contravention of legislation - Prosecution of offences

Appeal by the accused from convictions for providing advice or representation for consideration, contrary to s. 91(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, (IRPA) and knowingly counselling a person to make a misrepresentation in relation to matters relevant to the administration of the IRPA, contrary to s. 126. ... [read more]

Monday, March 01, 2021 @ 8:41 AM

The Coach: Succession planning for large firms, part one | Gary Mitchell

The past two months I have written about succession planning for smaller firms. This two-part series is about succession planning for larger firms. ... [read more]

Thursday, February 25, 2021 @ 8:35 AM

Virtual vs. in-person trials: Benefits, negatives, considerations Female lawyer on video screen

Law has long been criticized as an industry that has been resistant to change. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the legal profession to implement certain changes. The Ontario Court of Justice stated that many court proceedings are now not conducted in person but to be conducted via audioconference or videoconference. ... [read more]

Wednesday, February 24, 2021 @ 2:33 PM

Lawyers and the OBA: Come blow your horn | Gary Joseph

In the midst of this pandemic, public confidence in government and various institutions has been strained (to put it mildly). At every turn it seems that our political leaders are failing us. The federal government’s vaccine response reminds me of the Keystone Cops skits of old. The operation of “Cottage Parliament” by our prime minister strikes many as an affront to democracy. Our provincial government’s shutdown policies are inconsistent and hard to understand. In all of this, certain segments of our society have bucked the trend and performed wonderfully. High on my list is the Ontario Bar Association (OBA). Full disclosure: I am a member but have absolutely no involvement in management of the OBA. ... [read more]