Features

Monday, 04 August 2014 08:00

Avoid common ADR pitfalls

Written by
Illustration: Mick Coulas
Illustration: Mick Coulas
Compared to the combat of litigation, alternative dispute resolution might seem to some like a pleasant alternative. But mediations, arbitrations, and their various brethren come with pitfalls of their own that can ensnare an unwary lawyer. Whether it’s your first time working through a labour mediation or you’re a jet-setter representing global multinationals, make sure to avoid some of the most common errors that plague ADRs.
Monday, 04 August 2014 08:00

DoJ hunger games

Written by
Illustration: Oleg Portnoy
Illustration: Oleg Portnoy
As the election returns rolled in on a cold January night in 2006, few Canadians were watching them more closely than the people who worked at 284 Wellington St. in Ottawa. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper had sent a chill through senior public servants a few days earlier when he reassured Canadians he couldn’t do anything rash because the Liberal courts and the Liberal bureaucracy would keep him in check. At the federal Justice Department, that had officials more than a little concerned. “They were all reading the tea leaves and saying . . . this is going to be interesting,” says one senior Justice Department official who traded anonymity for candor. “In their case, he doesn’t like public servants and he doesn’t like courts. Well, that seems to get us from two sides.”
Monday, 04 August 2014 08:00

The Top 25 Most Influential 2014

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2014_August_CLAugCover.jpgCanadian Lawyer’s Top 25 Most Influential in the justice system and legal profession is now in its fifth year. The Top 25 is always one of the magazine’s most-read, and most commented-on features. Of course our choices likely won’t meet with universal approval but a little healthy debate among readers is always welcome. Again this year, we used the tried-and-true formula of asking for nominations from legal groups and associations representing a variety of memberships and locations; last year’s Top 25 honourees; our readership; and an internal panel of writers and editors.
Monday, 07 July 2014 08:01

Frankenstorm brings down Heenan Blaikie

Written by
Illustration: Faye Rogers
Illustration: Faye Rogers
Ask Marshall Pawar what brought down Heenan Blaikie LLP and the corporate lawyer slyly dodges the question, telling a reporter he prefers to focus on his new venture, MEP Business Counsel.
But his answers still speak volumes about the future of national law firms.
Monday, 07 July 2014 08:00

On the upswing

Written by
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2014_July_comp.survey.jpgAssociate salaries are back on the upswing, but new lawyers may have to do more for their money in the future, judging by the results of Canadian Lawyer’s 2014 Compensation Survey. After two straight years of decline, first-year associates saw a significant 21-per-cent bump in salary, with the median hitting $80,000 in this year’s survey, up from $66,000 in 2013. That’s the highest level since we started compiling the survey in this format in 2010.
Monday, 07 July 2014 08:00

Broader border concerns

Written by
Illustration: Kim Rosen
Illustration: Kim Rosen
Guidy Mamann was at a former employee’s wedding when he received a phone call. “The community called me to tell me that one plane made it to Guatemala and the other one was stuck in Trinidad and the Canadian government had gone out, chased them down, and brought them back,” says the senior partner with Mamann Sandaluk & Kingwell LLP. The “community” was Lev Tahor, a Haredi Jewish sect that had recently fled from Quebec to Ontario in an attempt to evade child protection authorities. A handful of the approximately 40 families had then tried to go to the Caribbean, but only a few made it successfully.
Monday, 02 June 2014 08:00

The going rate

Written by
Click image to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Canada’s slow and steady economic recovery seems to be reflected in the country’s legal market, with lawyers split down the middle on the merits of a price hike.
Monday, 02 June 2014 08:00

New money

Written by
Illustration: Pierre-Paul Pariseau
Illustration: Pierre-Paul Pariseau
Small businesses and startups across Canada look set to gain much wider access to capital under proposals to permit equity crowdfunding. In recent months, securities regulators in Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia have all released plans that would allow businesses to raise cash in this way.
Monday, 02 June 2014 08:00

Cryptocurrency!

Written by
Illustration:Kickpixel
Illustration:Kickpixel
When Jillian Friedman completed her articles at McMillan LLP at the end of last year, the young Montreal lawyer attended by fortuitous happenstance a networking event presentation on bitcoins, a controversial and extremely volatile virtual currency that exists only digitally, as computer code. Friedman, unshaken by the scandals and sordid headlines that have rocked the nascent virtual currency over the past year, was hooked, enticed by the notion of becoming a cryptocurrency legal expert. She is on her way. Heeding the advice of her mentors, Friedman is cultivating a clientele of bitcoin startups, a sector that allows her to share her knowledge and brief legal experience in financial services and general commercial law to an industry pushing for mainstream recognition.
Monday, 05 May 2014 08:01

Bad law

Written by
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2014_May_cl-may-14-pg-01.jpgIt was just last summer that a team of lawyers led by Alan Young persuaded the Supreme Court of Canada to strike down the country’s prostitution law. But the seeds of the litigation were sown 25 years earlier, in the chill, pre-dawn hours of a Toronto morning. Young, a young lawyer at the law office of legendary criminal lawyer Alan Gold, had fielded an urgent call from a client who operated a dingy brothel near the city’s downtown bus depot. The joint was being raided, and the nervous client wanted help.
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