Gabrielle Giroday is the editor of Law Times. She is a journalist and former government spokeswoman who has won awards for her work in both media and public service. She has experience writing and communicating about legal and justice issues, foreign affairs, gender issues, and economic analysis for publications across Canada.
|Hugo Alves says a reported move by the federal government to formally legalize recreational marijuana use has led to ‘an uptick in activity in what’s already a very busy space.’|
Hugo Alves, partner with the corporate commercial practice group at Bennett Jones LLP and co-founder and head of the firm’s cannabis practice group, says the move should lead to more activity in the sector.
“I think from a legal perspective, what it means for lawyers or our clients now, is that clients who may have had one toe in, in terms of wanting to get involved in the space, or timing the execution of their business plans to coincide with a non-medical adult use market, now have a better indication as to timelines, and we should see an uptick in activity in what’s already a very busy space,” says Alves.
Alves says, however, how changes will roll out is still unclear.
“Long-term what it means, we don’t know,” says Alves. “We don’t really know [if] that April date means legislation. . .or whether that means a fully-operating system, which will require something beyond legislation,” that could take longer to unspool.
Markets have responded positively to the news, noted Alves.
“I think it will make our clients happy,” he says.
Cheryl Reicin, chair of the life sciences group at Torys LLP, says seeing a lot of influx of financing from the United State and Israel.
“You know there’s been a tsunami of financing, and [you] just see that heating up, because some of the uncertainty will be going away,” says Reicin, who is based in the firm’s Toronto and New York offices.
Eileen McMahon, who leads the drug regulatory and IP practice in Torys LLP’s Toronto office, says a task force that looked at cannabis legalization led to important recommendations that industry watchers were expecting to be implemented. She says Canada is “setting the benchmark for how this might evolve in other countries, as well.”
“I would say that is not surprising that this is happening so quickly, because we know that representatives of the federal government have been working in the evenings to get this done,” she says. “So they have really been striving to meet the Prime Minister’s objective of introducing the draft legislation this spring, and we’ve actually seen that as we work with them on various issues.”
A spokeswoman for federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould did not provide a comment on the issue by deadline.
|Sharon Shore says a recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruling shows a judge’s ‘frustration with the current system and a problem that we know exists as far as access to justice.’|
In the case, a 32-year-old woman, Noora Abdulaali, alleged she had been assaulted by her former husband, and harassed after leaving him.
The 43-year-old man, Kadhim Salih, said he feared his former wife would fabricate allegations against him.
The couple had no shared property and no children, noted Pazaratz.
“The next time anyone at Legal Aid Ontario tells you they’re short of money, don’t believe it. It can’t possibly be true. Not if they’re funding cases like this,” Pazaratz said the ruling.
Abdulaali was represented by duty counsel paid by Legal Aid Ontario, while Salih was represented with his own lawyer, paid for by Legal Aid Ontario.
Pazaratz was critical of the case for multiple reasons, and said it was “hardly worth a written endorsement.” However, as Pazaratz explained in the ruling, it blossomed into an ongoing battle after Abdulaali pursued a restraining order against Salih.
The two, who now live in separate cities, were unable to agree on a court order that they would stay away from each other — even if binding on both of them.
“Many taxpayers can’t afford their own lawyers, and don’t qualify for free assistance through Legal Aid. So they end up representing themselves in court. Or facing financial reality and settling without going to court,” he says, in the ruling.
“But when you pay no taxes and Legal Aid gives you a free lawyer, there’s no incentive to be sensible. Why worry about the cost when some unsuspecting taxpayer out there is footing the bill?
Ultimately, Pazaratz suggested the parties and counsel involved have a discussion to see if they could reach a “sensible resolution” — and if not, that he “would formally request that the Area Director of Legal Aid Ontario attend. . .to justify the obscene expenditure of tax money on a simple case with such an obvious solution.”
“I made a fuss. I told them to stop wasting money. So they settled,” said Pazaratz.
“But why do we have a system in which so much tax money gets wasted, unless someone takes the time to make a fuss?”
For its part, Legal Aid Ontario said in an email statement it could not go into the details of the case.
“Legal Aid Ontario offers support to all kinds of vulnerable people,” said spokesman Graeme Burk.
“The privacy rules governing our actions means we cannot comment on the specifics of this case. However, our role has been, and continues to be, helping our clients access justice and navigate the legal system.”
Sharon Shore, partner at Epstein Cole LLP and chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s Family Law Section, says “what we’re hearing is [Pazaratz’s] frustration with the current system and a problem that we know exists as far as access to justice.”
“He’s placing the blame on Legal Aid Ontario, but I don’t know that it’s really limited to that issue,” she says. “. . .There is an ongoing problem that a lot of judges and certainly the bar have been working on, as far as what do you do with the self-represented individuals, what do you do with the court system that is lacking in resources.”
Shore says Pazaratz “didn’t need to write” the decision, as it was a consent order.
“He was clearly frustrated and sending a message. It makes you stand up, it makes you listen to it, but I’m not sure that it’s fair to place it entirely on Legal Aid,” she says.
“I think it’s a frustration with the system.”
Jonathan Richardson, with Augustine Bater Binks LLP in Ottawa, said the ruling is “one of the bluntest decisions I have ever read.”
“It shows the difficulties present in the legal aid system and the balancing act legal aid lawyers have to maintain,” he says. However, he adds, “it is fair to point out that the presence of legal aid has not made this particular dispute any worse.”
“Given the circumstances described, it is likely the same steps would have been taken and the same court costs incurred if both parties were self-represented. . .what the case does speak to is the need for early intervention and triage in family law cases so that cases such as these can be worked out of the system at an early stage and without the need to use up court resources which could be better focused elsewhere,” he says.
|Kathleen Ganley says that $14.5 million will be invested to “address court and Crown pressures,” including in more crown prosecutors in Alberta.|
The announcement by Ganley comes ahead of the tabling of the provincial budget March 16, and on the heels of complaints by the Alberta Crown Attorney’s Association that due to inadequate resources, an estimated 200 cases had been stayed.
“The justice system is fundamental to the rights and safety of Albertans. I have been working on finding ways to improve that system, which has been increasingly backlogged over the years, since I took office,” said Minister Kathleen Ganley, in a statement provided to Law Times.
“The Jordan decision has had impacts across the province, and we moved quickly to ensure we were prioritizing matters in a proportionate and thoughtful way, and began immediately looking at what resourcing was necessary. We took a thoughtful and balanced approach. This is a huge step in the right direction, and we will continue to monitor the needs for resources in all areas of the justice system.”
According to numbers provided by the province, the “Alberta Crown Prosecution Service had 325 Crown prosecutors in 2016 and 256 Crown prosecutors in 2006.”
Damian Rogers, treasurer of the Alberta Crown Attorneys’ Association, says even with 35 crown prosecutors being added, more hiring needs to be done.
The crown attorney’s association represents 262 crowns who work for the Edmonton Crown Prosecutors’ Office, the Calgary Crown Prosecutors’ Office, regional prosecutions officers and a specialized prosecutions branch with offices in Alberta, as well as people employed in appeals, education and policy roles.
“It’s a move in the right direction and the Minister acknowledged in her public comments that this was a start, rather than the end, of resourcing issues, and I think she was signalling that she appreciated that this would not necessarily be sufficient resources to resolve all of the issues we’ve had in terms of caseload,” says Rogers.
Rogers says there are positions that have not been filled due to a “hiring restraint” since 2015, and bringing 35 prosecutors on will fill vacant positions, but there are still another 50 prosecutors needed for trial and docket court. Factors that have caused stress on crowns are an increasing population in Alberta, an increasing number of criminal prosecutions, and increasing severity of crime, says Rogers.
“This is a return of staffing levels to early 2015 levels, before this hiring restraint happened,” he says.
The province had already announced it was adding 15 new prosecutors, and the announcement of 35 new prosecutors is in addition to that.
Rogers says due to a Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench decision, Hearing Office Bail Hearings (Re), 2017 ABQB 74, bail prosecutors will be needed because the court ruled that the crown’s practice of delegating first appearance bail hearings to police officers was not permissible under the Criminal Code, and gave a deadline of August 2017 for the crown to reassume that role.
A triage protocol will still be necessary for prosecutors despite the new people being hired, Rogers says.
“We’re still in a situation where prosecutors are going to be asked to prioritize serious and violent crime, and resolve less serious files by way of plea bargains, which we always did, but there is additional pressure on us to do that and it may result in offers being lower than we would have given in the past. . .,” he says.
Rogers said the association has asked the government to consider an external review of crown caseload.
“It’s a step in the right direction to have all those positions potentially filled, and we’ve been advised they won’t all be posted all at once, it will be over the next fiscal year that they’ll be able to return to full staffing levels,” says Rogers.
“We would have liked to have seen the timeline be a bit faster, but over the next year, we are anticipating a return to our earlier level of staffing for trial prosecutors.”
Ganley said the plan to add prosecutors has been underway for some time.
“A budget as large and complex as the provincial budget for Alberta takes months to develop,” said the statement by Ganley.
“This issue has been under discussion with my colleagues at the Cabinet table for months, and decisions were made well in advance of last week.”
The call comes as Alberta Minister of Justice Kathleen Ganley says recruiting is underway for 15 new Crown attorneys.
|Kelly Dawson says there’s a ‘clear disparity’ in the way funding is allocated to different parts of the criminal justice system, such as policing, corrections, courts services, prosecution services and Legal Aid services.|
Damian Rogers, the Alberta Crown Attorneys’ Association treasurer and a Crown prosecutor in Edmonton, says there is a “conservative estimate” of 200 stayed cases in Alberta since January 2017, due to inadequate resources.
“I think it has a lot of implications throughout the justice system,” says Rogers.
“I believe we’re the only province that has essentially publicly gone out and said, ‘Look, we will make a decision to stay viable significant crimes in order to prioritize more serious crimes,’ so we’re not talking about shoplifting or petty crime, we’re talking about impaired driving, assault, frauds . . . they’re not insignificant files.”
Rogers says that, in 2007, there was a decision made that the prosecution service was understaffed and that, over the next three years, a number of personnel including Crown prosecutors, were hired, so there was a peak number of prosecutors reached in 2010.
“Our concern is that workloads have been increasing for prosecutors, caseloads have been increasing for prosecutors over the last number of years and the staffing level of our prosecution service was last reviewed in 2007, based on 2006 figures,” he says.
“Since that time, the complement has not increased of Crown prosecutors and, in fact, because of the current hiring restraint that our government has imposed on the Crown prosecution service and on other areas of government, we’re actually below the staffing numbers that were deemed appropriate back in 2007, based on 2006 numbers.”
Ganley says the government is “definitely concerned” by the stayed cases, and it has committed to hiring more Crowns.
“I don’t think anyone wants to see a victim not get to see their accused person have their day in court because of a procedural matter,” she says.
She notes that some the stayed cases date back to 2012.
It’s difficult to comment on individual cases because “the prosecutors will exercise their discretion in each of those cases,” Ganley says. Vacancies on the province’s Court of Queen’s Bench are also part of the problem, she says.
“We’ve had — I think everyone will be aware — there have been backlogs, not just in Alberta but everywhere in the country, that have been sort of building up over a number of years, probably even decades, and those backlogs were suddenly sort of brought to the forefront by the decision of the Supreme Court in Jordan,” she says.
“So, a situation that had been sort of trending one way for quite a while was suddenly reversed, so that prompted us to act quite quickly, and so we have been discussing resourcing here throughout our budgeting process.”
Information provided by the Alberta government states there were 325 Crown prosecutors in 2016, compared with 256 Crowns in 2006.
Rogers says the 15 prosecutors promised by Ganley will not be enough.
“We would still be below the number of prosecutors we had for 2006 crime levels, and we’re saying, ‘No, we need those positions filled and we need, actually, new people, not just filling vacancies that exist already,’” he says.
Kelly Dawson, Criminal Trial Lawyers Association president and managing partner at Dawson Duckett Shaigec & Garcia Barristers in Edmonton, says he does “believe and accept that the Crown prosecution service is under-resourced and has been for some time,” though he says he can’t comment to the severity of the issue.
“There’s no doubt that the Crown has been forced to do a triage system and they have an early resolution office that is pumping out — trying to pump out, at least — attractive offers to resolve matters as quickly as possible. They are also increasing their use of stays, obviously, with respect to weaker charges,” says Dawson.
“This was a shift from what we’ve heard from them, that they’re now having to stay prosecutions that are otherwise meritorious, and if that is accurate and true, that certainly is strong evidence of public safety being put at risk with an under-resourced system.”
Dawson says there’s a “clear disparity” in the way funding is allocated to different parts of the criminal justice system in Alberta, such as policing, corrections, courts services, prosecution services and Legal Aid services.
“The problem here and in other jurisdictions is criminal justice resourcing and reforms [are] piecemeal at best, but I would say chaotic describes how governments have funded and implemented reforms to the criminal justice system to make it more efficient and effective, and it seems to be one of the poor boys on the budget priority list in most provinces,” he says.
|Francois Desroches Lapointe says members were under the impression for the past few months there was no special legislation in mind to force those on strike back to work.|
“We’ve been on strike for a really long time. People are not getting paid at all, because we don’t have any money in the union funds,” he told Legal Feeds on Monday, but noted members are still committed to the strike.
“It’s not really about the money, it’s about our profession, so I’d say that people are really determined still, even though they are really angry the negotiations could not progress as much as we wanted, and of course, now that there is the legislation that is coming on, people are really, really angry,” he says.
Desroches Lapointe says members were under the impression for the past few months there was no special legislation in mind to force those on strike back to work.
“But, they completely changed their position about that last Thursday when the minister responsible for negotiations for the government announced in the media that they were making us a final offer on Thursday night, and we had 24 hours to respond to that offer,” he says.
Desroches Lapointe said after the offer was received, the union’s executive board responded with a counter-offer.
This past weekend, a negotiation meeting was scheduled, but Desroches Lapointe said the minister announced that special legislation would come before the National Assembly of Quebec to force strikers back to work. Debate over the issue was anticipated to occur at the assembly on Monday night, says Desroches Lapointe.
“. . .What is obvious that they are going to force us back to work because that’s what they announced,” says Desroches Lapointe.
“The main issue in the strike is that we want the recognition that our profession is particular , and if we need a different mode of negotiation than the traditional mode of negotiation, we want something that is non-conflictual, because every time we have to negotiate our work conditions, it’s really , really hard with Quebec’s government, and. . .the past experience is really negative,” he says.
A spokeswoman for Quebec’s Treasury Board President Pierre Moreau did not respond to a request for comment.
|Lorne Sossin says reconciliation with Indigenous People and accessibility are top goals that have been identified for Osgoode Hall Law School.|
“On accessibility, we really saw it as something that is part of this outward focus of the law school, to really ensure we’re getting our financial barriers reduced to the extent we can, for ensuring our communities are inclusive, [that] no one’s pressed up against the window looking in on a great legal education if they want one and are eligible for one,” says Sossin.
The law school at York University has about 900 full-time students, 300 part-time graduate students and 100 to 150 full-time graduate students.
In the newest strategic plan unveiled last month, the school identified three goals it will continue to work on — community engagement, experiential education and research intensification. Now, the other two goals have been added, says Sossin.
“We saw accessibility and reconciliation through a really holistic lens as we added them to the list of those pillars on which we all stand,” says Sossin.
One of the ways the school is promoting accessibility is the Income Contingent Loan Program, which Sossin says is “far and away our most significant measure to counter” high debts and high tuitions.
The program is for students in the 10-year period following their graduation, and is designed so that a graduate pays back the debt in a way that reflects their income.
“[It] features students who get a loan from the law school to cover the entirety of their tuition — that’s a mixture of bursary and loan — and then the loan portion is repayable after they graduate, if their income is over $80,000 a year, and there’s some [income-measured payback] between $60,000 to $80,000, and if they make less than $60,000, the loan is forgiven in its entirety,” says Sossin.
Sossin says the program helps with addressing “career choice anxiety.”
“If [during] this debt, you can’t go and join an international human rights practise or do clinical work because you need a higher salary, this is a way in which the law school can have your back,” he says.
The program is available to five students in the graduating class of 2018 and another five in the graduating class of 2019, and was initially designed to cover 25 students in its five-year pilot. Sossin says the new strategic plan reflects hopes the program will grow.
“It’s an example of something that we felt we could do, and needed to do, to counter this status quo where tuition keeps going up, students keep going into more debt with credit lines, leads to more anxiety, more limits of career choice and limits, ultimately, who is going to come into the pool to apply for law school,” he says.
The school also has a flex-time initiative, which it describes as a way “to make the Law School more accessible to students who face barriers that make participation in the full- time Juris Doctor program difficult or impossible, such as work or care responsibilities, financial restrictions or health concerns.”
Tuition for domestic students doing their Juris Doctor was $24,995.98 in 2016-2017, and $25,820.98 for international students. Students must pay $977.42 in ancillary fees, as well.
The dean noted Osgoode is “not the most expensive law school in town.”
“[U of T] often gets a lot more of the press, negative and sometimes positive, around tuition, just because it’s at the forefront, and we’re not certainly far behind, second most expensive in the country, but it’s certainly a top of mind issue that helped drive our focus on accessibility. . .,” he says.
|Alastair Clarke says ‘refugees are an economic positive’ for Canada.|
A U.S. federal judge suspended the order last week, and now, the government has a chance to submit legal briefs in support of Trump’s intended policy changes. The battle may end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Manitoba has garnered attention since CBC reported that more than 400 people were intercepted near the U.S.-Canada border at Emerson between April to December 2016.
“I think there’s just a general impression that Canada is a safer country than the United States, and they will have more support here, and that [they] will have a better life,” says Alastair Clarke, founder of Clarke Immigration Law in Winnipeg.
Due to Trump’s changes, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers last week was “calling on Canada to immediately suspend the Safe Third Country Agreement.”
"Under the STCA, those who try to enter Canada through the U.S. to make a refugee claim at the border are returned to the U.S. regardless of whether they will or already have had access to asylum in the U.S. The U.S. and Canada have considered one another “safe” for asylum-seekers,” said a CARL news release.
“The STCA creates a North American approach to refugee approvals. With President Trump’s Executive Orders, the U.S. is unilaterally changing the terms of that approach, with potentially disastrous consequences for vulnerable asylum-seekers.”
In Winnipeg, Clarke works with groups that have housing set up and are working “as hard as they can to bring as many people” as they can support.
“The government can’t keep up with the demand,” says Clarke, adding that the biggest legal hurdle he’s grappling with is the STCA.
“Unless the refugee claimant is able to fall under one of the exemptions listed in the agreement, then they are denied at the border,” says Clarke, who says most people who are successful are able to do it due to exemptions related to having family in Canada.
Clarke has handled about 30 to 35 files involving refugee claimants since January 2015, from countries such as Haiti, Burundi, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, and Nigeria.
“I think more people are coming based on the rhetoric coming from the United States. It’s partially Trump, but I mean Trump was elected, because in general, there is an anti-refugee sentiment in the United States,” he says. “It’s not just him, but I think — generally speaking — there is less of an appetite for refugees in many parts of the United States.”
Ghezae Hagos of the Manitoba Interfaith Immigration Council said that since October 2016, the non-profit organization has come into contact with 117 people who have asked for protection. That includes 39 people in January 2017. Hagos said that number was “certainly much bigger than what we had in the last few years.”
Paul Hesse, immigration lawyer and partner at Pitblado LLP in Winnipeg, helps clients with immigration matters such as work permits and study permits, and obtaining permanent residency. He estimated he’s had double the amount of inquiries he normally receives since Trump was elected.
“It’s a mix in terms of why they’re doing it, in terms of their profiles,” he says.
“Some would be people who, I believe, are vulnerable to removal from the United States who are looking for alternatives, others are IT workers who are looking for a more friendly long-term solution, concerned about permit rules changing in the United States, and looking at other options.”
Canadian lawyers will have important work ahead of them as a result of a controversial executive order by U.S. President Donald Trump, says Sukanya Pillay, executive director and general counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.
|Stephen Green says the divisiveness of policies introduced by the Trump administration creates an opportunity for Canadian employers looking for talented professionals.|
The executive order — released Jan. 27 — suspended the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days. It also stops nationals from Yemen, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Iran and Iraq from going into the United States for 90 days.
“I think Canadian lawyers have a lot of work ahead of them.
“One is the immediate response that we can provide to individuals who are going to be stranded at Canadian airports because they cannot board planes if they’re affected by this order,” says Pillay.
The CCLA is calling on the Canadian government to take eight steps in the wake of the order, including boosting the number of refugees accepted into the country and implementing procedures to take applications from asylum seekers impacted by the ban.
“When you have a powerful global actor professing isolationism, and flouting — appearing to flout — international law, even if it’s for only 90 days, it does set off repercussions that are very concerning,” she says.
Pillay says the CCLA is recommending that Canada suspend the U.S.-Canada Safe Third Country Agreement.
In 2002, the two countries signed the agreement, which sets out that “refugee claimants are required to request refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in, unless they qualify for an exception to the Agreement.”
“[A]t this time, if the U.S. is willing to deport people who are fleeing persecution to the risk of human rights violations, then I think we have a legal and moral obligation to not abide by that agreement and allow any asylum seeker to make their claim here in Canada,” says Pillay.
Pillay also says there is also work ahead for corporate and commercial lawyers, as well as human rights and civil liberties lawyers, regarding bundled agreements between Canada and the United States.
“[I]n terms of intelligence sharing and alliances in the global counter-terror fight, we have numerous information-sharing agreements with the United States, and I think that it’s very important that we look at those information-sharing agreements immediately and we set clear limits on what we’re willing to share,” she says.
Stephen Green, senior partner at Green and Spiegel LLP, says he believes that the “divisiveness” of many policies of the Trump administration will push people out of the United States and from considering moving to the country.
“I think that the concept of multiculturalism of Canada is so successful in Canada, and that’s what draws so many people to come here and work, and move,” says Green.
Green says the move might create an opportunity for Canadian employers who specialize in areas such as IT, and it may be able to attract educated professionals from the seven affected countries who cannot extend their visas in the United States.
“We’ve seen a huge increase of very, very successful business people who do not like the Trump policies coming here to set up their businesses here, because they just don’t know what’s going to happen in the next four years with him,” he says.
Green says Canada should continue to accept asylum seekers.
“If these are asylum seekers that are coming from regimes like Iran and various other places, we should [accept them] absolutely,” says Green.
The executive order by Trump states that, “Deteriorating conditions in certain countries due to war, strife, disaster, and civil unrest increase the likelihood that terrorists will use any means possible to enter the United States.”
“In order to protect Americans, the United States must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles,” it says. “The United States cannot, and should not, admit those who do not support the Constitution, or those who would place violent ideologies over American law.”
Ontario Attorney General Yasir Naqvi hasn’t been shy about expressing the need to embrace technological advancement when it comes to the province’s justice system.
On Jan. 18, at an event at the Law Society of Upper Canada, Naqvi said the province is looking at e-filing of divorces.
“We’re looking at all different ways to make services available online. E-filing is, in my view, the very first important step we have to do . . .,” he said.
“I wanted to see on the family law side what could be done, so we’ve asked to see if divorce applications could be filed online.”
The move comes after the province introduced more digitization at Small Claims Court.
Jonathan Richardson, an Ottawa-based lawyer with Augustine Bater Binks LLP, says he is “pleased” by the news about possible digitization.
Richardson says the proposed change is “good for lawyers.”
“Any step which both reduces the amount of paper required while making a process more efficient is a step in the right direction,” he says.
He says there could be two significant potential ramifications.
“Firstly, pursuant to the Family Law Act, a person has until the earlier of six years from the date of separation or two years from the date of a divorce to seek an equalization of net family property.
“A party may not realize when e-filing for a divorce or receiving an e-filed divorce that he [or] she is starting the limitation period to seek an equalization payment,” he says.
He also says that most — if not all — insurance companies “will no longer provide extended health-care benefits to a partner when he [or] she is no longer a spouse.”
“E-filing for a divorce could result in that party being denied extended health-care benefits on a spouse’s plan,” he says.
“That works both ways.”
Brian Galbraith of Galbraith Family Law PC also says the move to digitize the divorce process will be welcomed.
“It will make divorce work more efficient so [it] should result in a cost savings to the consumer,” he says.
Steven Benmor, a Toronto-based lawyer with Benmor Family Law Group, agrees.
“Ontario should join the rest of the world and adopt IT, which is the fastest, cheapest and most modern way of communicating,” he says. “All legal cases are all about communication between [the litigant or litigants], lawyers and judges.”
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