Focus On

Legal Innovation


Friday, December 11, 2020 @ 8:52 AM

LSO welcomes new professionals after transformational, difficult year LSO treasurer Teresa Donnelly

Lawyers and paralegals in Ontario who began their careers this year amidst the COVID-19 pandemic have now been officially welcomed to their professions, capping a year which saw unprecedented change not only for new licensees but the justice system as a whole. ... [read more]

Friday, December 11, 2020 @ 8:29 AM

Fear of failure: Life in legal tech startup trenches | Sean Bernstein

You’re in bed in a cold sweat. You’ve been tossing and turning for hours. It’s 4:15 a.m. and you reason that if you fall asleep right now, at least you’ll get a few hours of quality shut-eye. But you know it’s in vain. It hasn’t happened for months; why is tonight any different? ... [read more]

Wednesday, December 09, 2020 @ 1:06 PM

Superior Court chief justice commits to continuing technological change Chief Justice Morawetz sm

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a “strike of lightning” or a “full-scale tornado” that forced Ontario’s court system to finally embrace technological change, but barriers to justice remain, says Superior Court Chief Justice Geoffrey Morawetz. ... [read more]

Tuesday, December 08, 2020 @ 9:23 AM

B.C. law society adopts strategic plan emphasizing innovation, improving access to justice Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC) president Craig Ferris

As an eventful 2020 draws to a close, the Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC) has adopted a plan which sets its goals for the next five years. Benchers approved the law society’s strategic plan for 2021-2025 at their Dec. 4 meeting. ... [read more]

Tuesday, December 08, 2020 @ 8:28 AM

Cancel culture and Law Society of Ontario | Gary Joseph

I have long been a critic of the cancel culture. While I support constructive change, the idea that all in the past is wrong, colonial, racist and worse, is a concept I cannot accept. Yes, we must always strive to eliminate wrong and improve our society but to ignore and destroy our past is not the way forward. ... [read more]

Thursday, December 03, 2020 @ 11:53 AM

Why I’m running for office | Jerry Levitan

“I’ve been around ya know.” Al Pacino as Lt. Col. Frank Slade in Scent of a Woman    ... [read more]

Tuesday, December 01, 2020 @ 8:21 AM

Cure worse than disease: Virtual jury deliberations during COVID Part One | Nik Khakhar

On Oct. 10, Justice Geoffrey Morawetz of the Ontario Superior Court suspended jury selection for 28 days in three of Ontario’s COVID-19 hotspots — Toronto, Brampton and Ottawa — while allowing in-person non-jury trials with 10 people or less to continue. Despite this allowance, Justice Morawetz maintained that proceedings should be carried out remotely as much as possible. By providing the option for hearings to be held via videoconferencing technologies such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams, courts can ensure that cases suffer from minimal delays despite COVID-19 restrictions on indoor gatherings. However, Ontario courts have been reluctant to allow jury deliberations to take place online. This contrasts with some courts in the U.S., such as Florida’s Fourth Judicial Circuit Court, which have overseen some of the world’s first virtual jury trials.   ... [read more]

Monday, November 30, 2020 @ 9:41 AM

Estate tech alignment: Which approach suits you best hands_digital_sm

The estate management requirements of our clients’ growing portfolio of digital assets is an emerging area for the estate industry and estate practitioners. ... [read more]

Friday, November 27, 2020 @ 9:00 AM

Last words on paralegals | Gary Joseph

I do not presume to write on behalf of the family law bar, but I have heard from an enormous number of my colleagues in response to my writings in this publication and elsewhere regarding independent paralegal practices of family law. My views have been influenced by colleagues and have evolved as a result of the debate. As I have previously written, I believe that the decision is basically made to license independent paralegal practices of family law and that the Law Society of Ontario request for input is but a salve to the profession. Many of my colleagues have reflected disappointment with the initial process that led to the LSO debate and to the likely outcome. ... [read more]

Thursday, November 26, 2020 @ 8:35 AM

Rule of law in era of virtual hearings: Doing justice? | Joseph Groia

Like the rest of the world, the legal profession has spent the last eight months isolating or socially distancing and implementing countless other changes. As a result, the way in which the legal system operates has undergone a significant shift. A fundamental part of this shift, and the main subject of this small note, is the move to videoconferencing technology, such as Zoom or WebEx, now widely used as a substitute for in-person meetings. ... [read more]