The Law Society of British Columbia is kicking in $150,000 to help continue a program aiming to address the shortage of rural lawyers.
The money will go to the Rural Education and Access to Lawyers (REAL) program of the Canadian Bar Association’s B.C. branch. It helps law students gets experience in communities of less than 100,000 people with a population-to-lawyer ratio of more than 500:1.
“This is allowing it to finish out its five-year pilot project,” says B.C. law society spokeswoman Robyn Crisanti. The program began three years ago with $795,000 in funding from the Law Foundation of British Columbia. The new money — $75,000 for each of the next two years — will help it continue, says law society president Gavin Hume.
Justice system players are better placed than ever to prevent wrongful convictions, according to a new report released this week.
The report, prepared by the federal/provincial/territorial heads of prosecutions committee, was a followup to its 2005 look at the issue of prevention of miscarriages of justice.
“There has been a phenomenal level of educational activity among police and prosecutors about the causes of wrongful convictions. Today there is a higher level of awareness than ever before among Canadian police and prosecutors about the causes of wrongful convictions and what can be done to prevent them,” reads the update. “Education about the phenomenon of miscarriages of justice is now a staple of training for rookie and senior officers and prosecutors alike.”
A lawyer has been suspended for breaching ethical standards in September 2005 while he was acting for a couple selling their property.
The Law Society of British Columbia has suspended Gerhard Schauble of Kelowna, B.C., for four months and issued $10,000 in costs to be paid by Aug. 1, 2012.
The breach occurred when the couple had a dispute over the division of proceeds from the sale and Schauble offered to mediate. In siding with the male client, Schauble reduced his legal fees without telling the female client. He later repaid her.
It's been some time since we posted a photo in our Courthouses of Canada series but here is the latest.
The Québec Court of Appeal is the highest court in the province. The Édifice Ernest-Cormier was built between 1922 and 1926 and designed by architects Louis-Auguste Amos, Charles J. Saxe, and Ernest Cormier in the Classical Revival architectural style. It is built of of Montreal greystone, a limestone, quarried from the Île-Jésus, and is four storeys tall. Its base and columns are made of grey granite from Stanstead in the Eastern Townships. Construction cost $5 million.
It was the second courthouse in Montreal to bear the name Palais de justice de Montréal. After Cormier’s death in 1980, the building was renamed in his honour.
I’m a big fan of taking pictures of courthouses and having been doing so whenever I see one while travelling to other parts of Canada. I thought it would be entertaining to start posting some photos of the various beautiful — and even those not-so-beautiful — courthouses from across Canada. I would also encourage readers to send in photos of the courthouses in your cities and towns to Legal Feeds and we’ll post them. If you have any you’d like to share — particularly of some of the country’s older courthouses that may be disappearing (or are already gone) — e-mail them to me and I’ll start posting them. Include information on age, architects, or any other interesting tidbits you may be aware of. Let’s see how many we can catalogue on this blog.
I’ll start off with one from Nova Scotia that I took last month while visiting the province prior to the Canadian Bar Association and Canadian Corporate Counsel Association’s annual meetings.
The Annapolis County courthouse in Annapolis Royal, N.S., is one of the oldest in Canada. It was designed by Francis LeCain and built in 1837 and later enlarged. Still in use, it continues the local presence of the British-based judiciary, which dates from 1721.
The issues surrounding conflict of interest were brought to the forefront in a recent case before the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench.
In Dow Chemical Canada Inc. v. Nova Chemicals Corp., Nova retained Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP and Macleod Dixon LLP. Dow initially retained Burnet Duckworth & Palmer LLP and then sought Bennett Jones LLP. The question regarding a possible conflict of interest arose after Andrew Little, then a partner at Oslers in Calgary who was responsible for representing Nova’s interests, joined Bennett Jones in Toronto.
“When I engage a lawyer to prosecute a dispute on behalf of NOVA Chemicals, I do not expect that lawyer to join our enemy’s law firm,” Nova stated in an affidavit. “It should be important that not only justice should be done, but that justice should be seen to be done.”
Despite uncertainty in the financial markets, a report from Robert Half International in Canada indicates in-house departments and law firms will continue to be hiring in the fourth quarter with corporate law and litigation predicted to see the most growth in the next three months. Intellectual property is also expected to be strong in certain markets.
Many law firms say they are hiring senior-level associates to meet renewed demand for their services, particularly those specializing in the hottest practice areas, according to "The Robert Half Professional Employment Report" released last week. According to the report, 43 per cent of lawyers surveyed at law firms and corporations indicated they are likely to increase hiring in the fourth quarter of 2011. Most of the hiring is expected at law firms. That is down six per cent from the third quarter when 49 per cent of lawyers indicated they planned to increase staff levels.
Among the 150 lawyers surveyed for the report, 93 per cent said they are at least somewhat confident in their organizations' ability to expand in the fourth quarter.
In a small victory for economic freedom, the Liquor Control Board of Ontario has decided it’s OK for people to bring in booze from other provinces.
Many people, of course, might not have realized that you couldn’t take alcohol from one province to another. But this summer, the LCBO board decided that Ontarians can bring up to three litres of spirits, nine litres of wine, and 24.6 litres of beer into the province. “Most provinces hand territories have comparable provisions, though some have importation limits that are lower than Ontario,” a note on the LCBO’s web site states.
The change didn’t require legislative amendments. Rather, it was the result of a policy resolution by the LCBO’s board, says spokesman Chris Layton.