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Monday, November 28, 2022 @ 2:26 PM

Licensee, stakeholder feedback leads LSO to extend virtual verification policy exemption Michael Lesage, LSO bencher

After receiving feedback from the profession, benchers and stakeholders, the Law Society of Ontario (LSO) has extended its “temporary pandemic measure of allowing virtual verification without authentication until January 1, 2024.” ... [read more]

Monday, November 28, 2022 @ 2:23 PM

First Nation’s bylaw prosecutor’s office said to be first in Canada Samuel Crowfoot

In what is believed to be a first in Canada, an Alberta-based law firm has been contracted to enforce the bylaws of a First Nation on its territory. In late October the Siksika Nation, which is about 100 kilometres east of Calgary, set up a bylaw prosecutor’s office, bringing in Mincher Koeman LLP to litigate Siksika’s bylaws in provincial courts “thereby making anyone who chooses to enter our lands subject to the Nation’s authority and laws as passed by our legislative body — Chief and Council,” the nation said in a news release. ... [read more]

Friday, November 25, 2022 @ 1:04 PM

Justice for all is justice we should aspire to | Chris Bentley

My colleague, Guy Pratte, questions whether virtual justice is “real justice’’ in his recent opinion piece (The Lawyer’s Daily, Oct. 26, 2022). He argues that a return to the in-person proceeding is essential for “real justice,” with anything else apparently being of lesser worth. ... [read more]

Friday, November 18, 2022 @ 10:09 AM

Next up for Civil Rules Committee | Michael Lesage

There was a big day recently at the Ontario Superior Court. Belatedly, the Civil Rules Committee recognized what other jurisdictions (and tribunals within Ontario) have long since known, that lawyers are capable, all by themselves, of both serving and filing documents with the court without assistance. As such, starting Jan. 30, 2023, Rule 16.09 will be amended, and it will no longer be a two-person job to serve and file a document. At long last, common sense has prevailed. ... [read more]

Thursday, November 17, 2022 @ 1:46 PM

LSO’s Access to Innovation project approves first participant

The Law Society of Ontario (LSO) announced on Nov. 15 that its Access to Innovation (A2I) project’s Advisory Council has approved Willful, an online estate planning platform, as the first participant. ... [read more]

Wednesday, November 16, 2022 @ 2:32 PM

COVID wills: Are they valid? Masked lawyer showing a contract in a Zoom call

With the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, wills experienced changes, particularly to those who acted as witnesses. The aspect of social distancing and lockdowns made standard procedures applicable for executions of testamentary documents almost impossible to follow. ... [read more]

Tuesday, November 15, 2022 @ 10:12 AM

Access to Justice: People-centred justice requires good data | Andromache Karakatsanis

Justice is a basic human need. In our highly regulated and complex society, people confront legal problems in myriad aspects of their daily lives. And access to a just result can take many different paths. Access to justice is not just about making our justice system less costly, more timely and efficient. Although it is that too. It is about keeping the focus on the people it serves, and recognizing that courts are a last resort, that justice is often best served by resolving legal issues outside of the courts. ... [read more]

Wednesday, November 02, 2022 @ 9:01 AM

New Saskatchewan family law procedures include judicial case conferences, screening officers Saskatchewan Court of King’s Bench Chief Justice Martel D. Popescul

The family law process is undergoing major change in Saskatchewan, which the chief justice of the province’s Court of King’s Bench says is aimed at reducing the number of matters which become litigious. ... [read more]

Monday, October 31, 2022 @ 10:18 AM

Small bits of micro happiness: Team building on whole new level | Gary Goodwin

As general counsel, I joined numerous team building exercises with my company. But they all paled in comparison to what this informal team managed together. ... [read more]

Thursday, October 27, 2022 @ 1:34 PM

The case for virtual justice in family law | Gary Joseph

Guy Pratte’s recent commentary in favour of in-person courtroom attendances continues the debate over this highly contentious issue. When I read his commentary, I was impressed by the quality of his written advocacy in favour of a return to in-person court. My first reaction though was disagreement with his position. However, upon rereading his views, we do agree on some very significant points although I still disagree on others. ... [read more]