Focus On



Wednesday, May 27, 2020 @ 2:10 PM

Creativity called for in dog, cat, custody battles | Victoria Shroff

Pet custody inquiries at my downtown Vancouver animal law firm are up and I suspect the upward trend will continue as we emerge from COVID-19. There’s been a whole lot of forced confinement due to the epidemic and news reports indicate that a surge in divorce filings are anticipated. Splitting up includes the family pet. ... [read more]

Monday, May 25, 2020 @ 12:31 PM

COVID-19 brings American-style injustice to Canada | Jordana Goldlist

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is considered the supreme law of the land. It is the piece of legislation that gives every citizen of this country the right to life, liberty and security of the person (s. 7). If charged with a criminal offence, the Charter gives us the right to be tried within a reasonable amount of time (s. 11b) and provides us with the absolute guarantee to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law in a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal (s. 11d). This is basic, first year law school kind of stuff. So why are those in charge of the justice system ignoring these constitutional guarantees by keeping the courts closed and preventing matters from proceeding to trial? ... [read more]

Monday, May 25, 2020 @ 8:51 AM

Leading the way forward: Modernizing access to justice | Colin Stevenson

The winds of change have been blowing hard lately, but the saying “it’s an ill wind that blows no good” suggests that even something as thoroughly devastating and unwelcome as the COVID-19 pandemic can hopefully facilitate some positive change in the justice system. ... [read more]

Friday, May 22, 2020 @ 1:55 PM

COVID-19 and animal laws: Moving beyond ‘property’ status | Daniel Dylan

For those who do not view non-human animals as food and advocate for a legal status “beyond property” (which is the current legal status) to that of even being legal persons, current law creates an unacceptable state of affairs. ... [read more]

Friday, May 22, 2020 @ 1:24 PM

Virtual mediation: Temporary or here to stay? | Stuart Rudner

While the technology has been around for a while, the need for virtual mediation was never as great as it is now. Previously, most litigators scoffed at the notion that a virtual mediation would be a worthwhile endeavour, but at the moment it is the only option and, more importantly, it has proven to be extremely effective. So, is virtual mediation just a temporary solution during these unprecedented times, or a viable alternative to the traditional in-person format? ... [read more]

Friday, May 22, 2020 @ 12:41 PM

Court tech lessons from those who’ve been conducting remote trials for years | Naomi Sayers

Circuit courts are the norm in northern or rural regions across Canada. These courts travel to different regions where there is no local courthouse. I was first introduced to circuit courts when I lived and worked in Northern Alberta, working with Indigenous youth. ... [read more]

Thursday, May 21, 2020 @ 12:50 PM

Improving access to justice in defamation | Hilary Young

In a recent article in The Lawyer’s Daily, Bruce McDougall suggests that defamation litigation is a playground for the rich (“Sticks and Stones | Bruce McDougall,” May 11). McDougall is right, of course; civil litigation is largely beyond the reach of the non-rich. The more interesting question is what can be done about it. ... [read more]

Thursday, May 21, 2020 @ 11:12 AM

The Coach: Managing growth: New hires, right seats | Gary Mitchell

In part one of this series I covered when to hire and who to hire. In this column, I am going to focus on getting your people in the best roles and what to do when and if you are outgrowing your staff. ... [read more]

Thursday, May 21, 2020 @ 8:42 AM - Last Updated: Thursday, May 21, 2020 @ 9:39 AM

How COVID-19 helped Ontario’s court system | Michael Lesage

Prior to the emergence of COVID-19, the Ontario court system was barely functional. Intended to justly adjudicate matters in the most expeditious and least expensive manner, it had strayed badly off course. In the process, it had devolved into a nadir of bureaucratic rituals and pageantry that increasingly left it accessible only to big business and the most well off. ... [read more]

Wednesday, May 20, 2020 @ 10:06 AM

COVID-19 conundrums for incoming lawyers | Natalie Schryer

It goes without saying that the graduating class of 2020 definitely received a whole lot more than we bargained for. ... [read more]