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Monday, 10 October 2011 10:07

It’s not all high-level securities fraud

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High-profile securities fraud cases like Bernie Madoff often get a lot of media attention, while the examination of financial adviser negligence gets overlooked. According to the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada, there were a total of 99 enforcement actions against financial advisers in 2010. Twenty-seven per cent of decisions against advisers were classified as due diligence/suitability and misrepresentation violations. In addition, a considerable amount was won in civil suits against advisers in 2010.
Monday, 26 September 2011 13:24

Unintended taxing consequences

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_jennifer-nees.jpgThe United States is one of the only major countries in the world to tax its citizens regardless of where in the world they live. And the taxation issues with U.S. citizens who live abroad has never been a more active topic in immigration law than it is right now.
Monday, 26 September 2011 12:42

The advocate as storyteller

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_colinfeasby.jpgThis is the ninth instalment of Arguably the Best, our year-long series on improving your litigation skills.
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2011_September_making_rain_19.jpgContinuing with her Making Rain Leadership Series, in this month's episode executive coach Debra Forman addresses the skills needed to build and sustain team relationships.
Tuesday, 20 September 2011 11:09

Going green from a transactional perspective

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_sarah-dale-harris.jpgI confess, I have at times struggled to believe the whole “green” movement on the part of big business was anything more than a marketing opportunity for many. Frankly, I’m still not convinced that many companies that claim to be green really are, but there are companies taking big steps forward and interesting projects are afoot that might make being green a lot more than just a publicity stunt. Not that being green doesn’t come with challenges, but my hope is that it will bring awareness and accountability together in a positive way that helps us sustain our most precious resources — well before it is too late.
Monday, 19 September 2011 11:48

Innovate or abdicate

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b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_stephen-mabey.jpgIn my August 2010 column I included a brief section on innovation. Right up front let me disclose that like a blind pig finds an acorn occasionally, little did I know how important innovation was going to be to law firms in 2011.
Monday, 19 September 2011 11:16

Scientology history could have more punch

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The Church of Scientology: A History of a New Religion by Hugh B. Urban, pp. 268, Princeton University Press, 2011
The Church of Scientology: A History of a New Religion by Hugh B. Urban, pp. 268, Princeton University Press, 2011
An academic history of the Church of Scientology might not seem relevant to Canadian Lawyer magazine, unless you’re familiar with the controversial movement’s use of the justice system against its many detractors. Founder L. Ron Hubbard explained his legal philosophy in 1955: “The purpose of the [lawsuit] is to harass and discourage rather than to win. The law can be used very easily to harass, and enough harassment on somebody who is simply on the thin edge anyway . . . will generally be sufficient to cause his professional decease. If possible, of course, ruin him utterly.”
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_sonyanigam.jpgLast Wednesday, Clare Short, a former cabinet minister in Tony Blair’s government, came to the University of Ottawa to present on the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, its achievements, challenges, and the way it is moving forward. Short is the chairwoman of the EITI board. She was joined by Mark Pearson, director general of external affairs at Natural Resources Canada; François Meloche, an extra-financial risk manager with Bâtirente inc.; and Ian Smillie, chairman of the board of the Diamond Development Initiative International. Ousmane Dème of Publish What You Pay opened the session. Not only was it a stellar group of experts in the area of mining and development, but there were also members in the audience from the Mining Association of Canada, Goldcorp Inc., and SNC-Lavalin, as well as members from a variety of non-governmental organizations. The room that fit about 60 people was over capacity and no one minded skipping the break in order to have a longer discussion.
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_Columnists_charlesgillis.jpgYears ago the founding partners of a well established Texas law firm were featured on the front page of a prominent legal publication. The five named partners struck a very dignified pose in a large photo above the fold. Although many firms might have celebrated this event as a public relations score, this particular firm felt unsatisfied. The partners looked great in their buttoned-up business suits, however, the photo conveyed a stuffiness that clearly did not exist in this progressive, family-friendly firm.
b_150_0_16777215_00___images_stories_01-CANADIANLawyer_2011_August_makingrain18.jpgThis month’s episode kicks off the Making Rain Leadership Series, spotlighting key management proficiencies and how to use these skills to be a more successful leader. Executive coach Debra Forman starts the series with tips on sustaining a commanding communication presence.
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