You say you want a resolution? A mediator reflects and regretsNew Year’s resolutions are made to be broken — or at least revisited — even if they are not, technically, “resolutions.”
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Monday, 03 August 2015 08:00

Controversy dogs family med-arb

Illustration: Jeannie Phan
Illustration: Jeannie Phan
Gary Joseph says some years ago, he dodged a legal bullet. He was sitting in a breakout room with a family law client. A mediator-arbitrator would come in to talk to them before going to another room to speak to the other party in a process similar to shuttle diplomacy. “The mediator came into our room and he began talking about the evidence that we have and our expert report and [started] making some negative comments about the expertise of our expert and some other things that our expert did,” Joseph recalls. “When he left the room, my client turned to me with just daggers in his or her eyes and said, ‘What have you done to me? How could this person possibly be fair to me after telling me that my expert report has 16 different holes in it?’”
Published in Features
Monday, 04 August 2014 08:00

Avoid common ADR pitfalls

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.
Published in Features
Here’s to using decision trees in the new yearIf your New Year’s resolution is to work smarter, more efficiently, and achieve more, boy do I have an interesting concept to share with you. While I can’t help with the diet or workout resolutions you committed to while sipping sparkling wine right after the New Year’s Eve countdown, I may perhaps convince you to start thinking about using “decision trees” in your practice. It is an old idea, but, I suspect, a greatly underutilized one.
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Monday, 23 September 2013 09:00

The art of litigating clearly

The art of litigating clearly“We’re just being reasonable”; “Come on, be rational!”; “You’re not thinking clearly!”
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Not necessarily trial but trial if necessary: York University v. Markicevic and why mediation mattersThe current crisis

In the early 1600s, William Shakespeare, writing through the voice of Hamlet, complained of “the law’s delay” during that most famous of soliloquies.
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Tuesday, 02 July 2013 09:00

Know thy process

Illustration:Matthew Daley
Illustration:Matthew Daley
When Dean Scaletta became director of litigation for Manitoba Public Insurance in 2009, he was astonished to learn the company didn’t have a retainer agreement for the lawyers it hired to defend hundreds of auto insurance claim cases across North America each year. Litigation — often minor, but sometimes costly and complex when fatal accidents are at issue — is the Crown corporation’s core business. Yet until 2009 it simply sent case files to outside counsel along with a letter saying, “Send us your bills.”
Published in Features
How to sabotage a mediation: An impractical guide for lawyers






To: Very junior associate

From: Senior partner

RE: Oil v. Water – mediation
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