Commentary

Monday, 05 September 2011 09:00

Too much secrecy

Written by
Illustration: Scott Page
Illustration: Scott Page
My mother used to chastise me as a teenager when I got cocky, warning me never to get too big for my britches. Basically, it was an ego check. She was reminding me not to be conceited and show an exaggerated sense of my own importance.
Illustration: Todd Julie
Illustration: Todd Julie
Starting a legal career is daunting, whether you begin as a big-firm associate, member of a small partnership, solo practitioner, government lawyer, or in-house counsel; whether you start out on Bay Street, in the burbs, or on a country road.
Monday, 01 August 2011 11:55

Adapt or die

Written by
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2011_August_gail_j_cohen.jpgThe big news of this issue is, of course, our second annual Top 25 Most Influential list. Our first effort last year got quite a bit of feedback, and we took that into account when planning this latest edition. Nominations came from readers, members of last year’s list, as well as an internal panel of Canadian Lawyer and Law Times writers and editors. We think it’s a pretty good mix of people and really showcases some of the influential voices in the legal profession in Canada.
Monday, 04 July 2011 10:46

Carrying on a winning tradition

Written by
Art director Bill Hunter, staff writer Robert Todd, and myself celebrating our success at the KRW Awards last month. Photo: Heather Gardiner
Art director Bill Hunter, staff writer Robert Todd, and myself celebrating our success at the KRW Awards last month. Photo: Heather Gardiner
We are very proud of the journalism we do here at Canadian Lawyer and once again I am happy to announce that at this year’s KRW Awards, which recognize the best in the Canadian business press, our magazine took home a gold and two silver awards. The gold award was in the best marketing/merchandising article and was won by Montreal lawyer and freelance writer Ava Chisling for our May 2010 cover story “How am I doing?” The story looked at the steps Canadian law firms, both small and large, are taking towards integrating client feedback into their firms’ culture.
Friday, 03 June 2011 11:38

Keep in mind third-party-beneficiary issues

Written by
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2011_June_cheryl_satin.jpgA recent U.S. court decision reminds us of the importance of considering potential third-party-beneficiary issues when drafting contractual indemnity provisions in Canada. On March 3, the New York Supreme Court (Appellate Division) upheld a lower court decision giving Diamond Castle Partners, a U.S. private equity firm, the right to sue IAC/InterActiveCorp. for damages for breach of representations IAC made in connection with the sale of its subsidiary, PRC LP, in late 2006. Diamond Castle was not a party to the purchase agreement. Instead, the representations were made to Panther/DCP Acquisition LLC, an affiliate of Diamond Castle formed for purposes of completing the acquisition. After the deal closed, PRC and Panther merged. In January 2008, PRC filed for bankruptcy and Diamond Castle’s equity interest in PRC was extinguished as part of the ensuing reorganization.
Friday, 03 June 2011 11:29

EWYK and other comp issues

Written by
For both partners and associates at law firms, it’s all about the money. And I don’t mean that in a derogatory way. The way lawyers get paid and earn revenue is at the heart of most law firms. Every law firm — no matter what type of law you practise, where you are located, or how many people there are in your firm — needs to make money in order to stay afloat. But you may be surprised at how “shy” Canadian lawyers are to talk about money.
Monday, 02 May 2011 11:02

Justice is in the details

Written by
Illustration: Dushan Milic
Illustration: Dushan Milic
You can only appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada if it lets you (there are limited exceptions to this rule in criminal cases). The judges, standing at the courtroom door so to speak, may deny you admission, and generally do. It’s a critical juncture in the life of a case and in the pursuit of justice. A retired Supreme Court judge told me, “If we don’t grant leave when we should, justice has been denied.” Another retired judge echoed these words when I spoke to him.
Monday, 02 May 2011 10:57

A world of possibilities

Written by
I’m not going to opine about who was wrong or right in the conflagration between the Canadian Bar Association and the former board and executive director of the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association, the topic of this month’s cover story, “Fighting for independence.” All I can say is that it has not been pretty, but at the end of the day, here’s hoping that corporate counsel end up benefiting from it.
Friday, 01 April 2011 11:23

An aggressive federal power play

Written by
Illustration: Scott Page
Illustration: Scott Page
This month, the Supreme Court of Canada will decide whether the federal government’s attempt to create a national securities regulator is a valid exercise of its trade and commerce law or simply the biggest federal power grab since Confederation.
Friday, 01 April 2011 11:21

Moving pictures ain’t so bad

Written by
In mid-March, Ontario Attorney General Chris Bentley said in an interview with the Canadian Press that he was open to the idea of putting cameras in the courtroom and wanted to canvass judges, prosecutors, and defence counsel on their thoughts about it. “I’m interested in the views of people as to whether we should move forward,” he said. “I’m open.”
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