The Law Society of Upper Canada’s conduct case against Douglas Keshen, of Keshen & Major in Kenora, Ont., was concluded on Tuesday, by mutual agreement between the parties. The longstanding case involved allegations of professional misconduct related to the handling of compensation paid under the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.
As previously reported in Law Times, Keshen was accused of several acts of misconduct, including failing to pay Indian residential school clients their full settlements within a reasonable period of time after receiving them, and transferring settlement funds for clients from his trust account to his general account “without any legal entitlement to the monies.”
“The case did not unfold as expected and the outcome of supervisory conditions was the only viable option,” Law Society treasurer Paul Schabas said in a statement on Tuesday. “Our experience with this particular case exposed serious systemic issues involving the Law Society’s regulatory and hearing process in relation to Indigenous issues. We need to listen and learn from this, so that we can do better.”