Commentary

Tuesday, 07 September 2010 05:32

News from the home front

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Aug. 4 was just an ordinary day of editing the stories for this issue of Canadian Lawyer when publisher Karen Lorimer and I were called into a meeting with our company president at which we were given the official news that our publications, Canadian Lawyer, InHouse, 4Students, and Law Times, had been sold to Carswell Thomson Reuters. We were part of a larger deal that will see Canada Law Book, a division of The Cartwright Group Ltd. owned by former judge Ian Cartwright, aligned with Carswell. Also part of the deal are CLB Media’s legal directories that include the Canadian Law List.

Tuesday, 03 August 2010 05:16

No claim means no claim!

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It is a fundamental principle of contract law, one which public policy favours and subject only to certain well-established and narrowly defined exceptions, that parties are free to determine for themselves the terms of contracts voluntarily entered into. Regrettably, the Supreme Court of Canada recently departed from this principle in Tercon Contractors Ltd. v. British Columbia (Transportation and Highways), thereby injecting uncertainty into the enforceability of contractual arrangements.

Tuesday, 03 August 2010 05:08

Positions of influence

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Every magazine and web site has a list of the top this or top that. And love or hate the lists, everybody ends up reading them and talking about them. At Canadian Lawyer, we’re no stranger to lists but for the most part we’ve not tackled the most controversial type of list: one about individual lawyers. So about 18 months or so ago, I decided to take on the task and come up with such a list. Its main characteristic, though, had to be that it was different from all other lists in the various legal publications and web sites dotting the Canadian landscape. What I realized is that most such tallies look at one particular area and don’t take into account the law as a whole: every area of practice, government, regulatory, judiciary, etc.

 

Sunday, 04 July 2010 20:00

A sad loss

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It is with great sadness that I sit to write my editorial for this issue. Upon arriving at work this morning, I was greeted with an e-mail message from a journalist colleague in Quebec notifying me that Mike King, our correspondent in Montreal, had passed away over the weekend from a brain aneurysm. He was 51.

 

Sunday, 04 July 2010 20:00

Counsels of perfection

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_2010_July_conflict-of-interest.jpgA Law Society of Upper Canada disciplinary panel recently held hearings into the conduct of Dorothy DeMerchant and Darren Sukonick. The two lawyers are accused of having acted in a conflict of interest without disclosing the conflict and without getting the informed consent of each affected client. At the time of writing, the panel’s decision had not been handed down. A lot of people are nervously waiting for it.

b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Standard_photos_bryan-haynes.jpgThe release of the Expert Panel on Securities Regulation’s final report (the Thomas Hockin report) reignited the decades-long debate of whether Canada needs a federal securities regulator. Notwithstanding broad, but not unanimous, political support for its creation, there is no compelling analysis to demonstrate that securities regulation would be improved or that the benefits of replacing our current system outweigh the risks. The constitutionality of such a move is currently before the courts.

Monday, 07 June 2010 05:13

It’s all about money

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This issue of Canadian Lawyer is all about money. Our cover story, “Good business or cheating the taxman?” takes a look at offshore financial centres, not something that is much talked about within the Canadian legal scene but which has become more and more part of the practice of business and corporate-commercial law internationally. Offshore financial centres, or offshore tax havens as they are more commonly referred to, have been the subject of heightened international scrutiny and pressure in recent years from governments in the developed world. We take a look at how Canada and Canadian companies and law firms are using the system.

 

 

Sunday, 02 May 2010 20:00

Do not be afraid

Written by

The recent Legal Marketing Association annual conference really spelled out how law firm marketing has shifted over the past few years. When I started writing on legal issues 13 years ago, most firms didn’t have a marketing person, let alone a department. That has changed and most dramatically over the last year to 18 months, those departments have become the focus of business development for the firms. Publisher Karen Lorimer attended the LMA and wrote a piece for our canadianlawyermag.com on the attitudinal transition. Well worth the read.

 

Sunday, 02 May 2010 20:00

There can be too much civility

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2010_May_civility-illustration.jpgCivility. Sometimes it seems the word is on every lawyer’s lips.

Monday, 05 April 2010 06:13

A good day in Gotham

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It’s not the Oscars but award season is upon us in the business-to-business magazine industry as well. Canadian Lawyer has a long history of winning awards for our top-notch editorial and art direction. But this year, the magazine has added a new feather to our cap, winning an American Business Media Jesse H. Neal Award for best single article for “War of the words,” our March 2009 cover story by Lisa Gregoire that examined the battle over the right to free speech versus the outlawing of hate speech. 

 

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