Sink or swim: The academy and the bar in Canada must move forward togetherI have from time to time been critical of what I consider a tendency to isolationism in the academy and bar in Canada. In my view, this has worked to the disadvantage of both of us. 
Published in Latest News
Monday, 20 April 2015 08:00

LAPs and managing stress

A few weekends ago, I joined about 78 Legal Assistance Plan volunteers from across British Columbia at the annual LAPBC volunteer’s training retreat in Harrison Lake. Our profession is fortunate to be served by so many caring people willing to help colleagues facing challenges. We all know our job can be stressful and collectively, we need to face some of the negative ways that stress manifests itself in our profession.
Published in Web exclusive content
Billable hour morphing into alternative arrangementsIt may not be in its final hour, but more and more lawyers are conceding the billable hour is being put in its “proper place” and is in steady decline.
Published in Latest News
Monday, 02 February 2015 08:00

The great debate of 2015

The great debate of 2014 was the future of articling. That issue has by no means been resolved; the Law Society of Upper Canada’s experimental alternative to articling has yet to prove itself worthy. As the first group goes through the Law Practice Program, there are definitely differing points of view on its value. But only time will tell how well prepared those LPP students will be to practise but also how those students will be accepted and valued in the profession compared to colleagues who went through traditional articles. Stay tuned on that.
Published in Commentary
The CBA Futures Report’s vision of Canadian legal educationThe subtitle of the CBA’s Futures Report, “Transforming the Delivery of Legal Services in Canada,” reflects the ambitious scope of the report. The subject matter of its 22 recommendations ranges from alternative business structures for the delivery of legal services to the collection of better information about the legal profession and its makeup, the regulation of the legal profession, and the education of Canadian lawyers.
Published in Latest News
Monday, 01 September 2014 08:00

Profits don’t preclude professionalism

The Canadian Bar Association released its report on the future of the legal profession last month. It is absolutely worth the time to read the whole thing (which is at cbafutures.org). The report’s full title: “Futures: Transforming the delivery of legal services in Canada” gives you a pretty broad hint that it’s a wide-reaching document examining many areas of practice and regulation. It touts innovation, flexibility, and choice as the necessary ingredients for the future health and growth of the profession. The report is one of the most potent recipes for a New Legal Universe that has come from any legal association or governing body in this country, or even in North America.
Published in Commentary
Schulich law school dean Kim Brooks says she’d like to see more academic work following up on what happens to those with a legal education.
Schulich law school dean Kim Brooks says she’d like to see more academic work following up on what happens to those with a legal education.
The Canadian Bar Association’s 2014 Legal Futures report explores some interesting possibilities for law students and their education.
Published in Latest News
Temporary foreign workers dominate immigration conferenceEvery year, members of the immigration bar gather together to discuss emerging issues and rising trends in the practice of immigration at the Canadian Bar Association’s annual immigration conference. This year, the conference was held in Calgary. Immigration practitioners from across Canada (and around the globe!) met to learn and discuss some of the very real issues facing our rapidly changing industry.
Published in Web exclusive content
Monday, 03 March 2014 08:00

Court fees face SCC scrutiny

Illustration: Sara Tyson
Illustration: Sara Tyson
In April, Supreme Court Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin will have a chance to put her money where her mouth is on access to justice. That’s when the SCC is expected to tackle a challenge over court hearing fees, which the Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia and the Canadian Bar Association B.C. branch say are unconstitutional because they impede access to justice for the middle class.
Published in Commentary
Monday, 03 February 2014 08:00

Droning on

Droning onA number of businesses have teased customers in the past year or so with the suggestion online orders could be delivered by unmanned drones. We’ve had the Burrito Bomber — self-dubbed as “the world’s first airborne Mexican food delivery system,” — and variants such as the LobsterCopter, TacoCopter, and, most recently, Amazon.com Inc.’s Octocopters.
Published in Features
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