Marketing practices targeted at Canadian-based consumers may soon be significantly curtailed by a bill aimed at protecting consumers from the bombardment of electronic messages, often referred to as "spam."

Uncertainty and law may seem to repel one another, but some lawyers are built for a bit of uncertainty in their life. Some even seek it out.

Though it is rarely perceived as a willful act, many lawyers have taken a leap of faith and left permanent employment to take on a contract in a bet for something better. That is until recently.

In this new economy, even the chronically restless are seeing permanent positions with a renewed appreciation.
At the same time, contracts are becoming a more popular option with employers as budgets and headcount continue to be squeezed.



In recessionary times employers look to save costs by reducing labour costs, and those times have come to Canada. All across the country, labour lawyers are seeing an upswing in activity indicating a downturn in fortunes. Ron Pink, managing partner of Pink Larkin in Halifax, has noticed a large increase in cold calls from individual employers since January and calls the slowdown “profound.” André Nowakowski, a labour lawyer at Miller Thomson LLP in Toronto, has seen activity picking up since last fall. “It doesn’t matter what size the employer, we are seeing it everywhere. It’s a painful process for everyone.”
For some lucky people, a foreclosure is a buying opportunity. As layoffs, credit squeezes, and depressed markets are forcing some property owners to give up their homes or close their businesses, others are looking for great deals in power of sale purchases. Available in Ontario and some other jurisdictions, power of sale is the right of the mortgage lender to force the sale of a property without judicial proceeding. It’s the easiest and most common way for mortgagees to turn delinquent loans into cash — and, even though power of sale transactions are required to reflect market values, they can be good bargains for purchasers in a depressed market.

Time for going it alone?

  • Law office management
Written by Posted Date: April 8th, 2009
It may fly in the face of conventional wisdom, but for James Scott there is no better time to launch a solo property law practice than in the depth of a recession and real estate slump.
Stuart “Kip” Cobbett is the chief operating officer and Montreal managing partner of 500-lawyer Stikeman Elliott LLP. His firm has recently become involved in a UN program with 14 other corporate law firms from around the world that are looking to identify whether and how national corporate law principles and practices foster corporate cultures respectful of human rights. He also talks to Canadian Lawyer about business and the current economic situation.

Commercial leasing in a tight market

Written by Posted Date: March 4th, 2009
The economic downturn is putting huge pressures on commercial leases.

Going from strength to strength

Written by Posted Date: February 4th, 2009
Andrew Tremayne is the managing partner of Ottawa labour and employment law boutique Emond Harnden. Since the firm’s inception in 1987, it has grown from three to 24 lawyers. He talks to Canadian Lawyer about how the largest boutique of its kind in the nation’s capital goes from strength to strength.

Getting to know you

Written by Posted Date: February 3rd, 2009
Lawyers acting on wills, estates, or small property deals in rural Manitoba do not usually run into many problems with money laundering or terrorist financing.
Lawyers advising directors and corporate directors will take some comfort in the recent decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in BCE Inc. v. 1976 Debentureholders, which affirmed that Canadian corporate directors owe a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of the corporations they serve, and not to any other stakeholders.
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