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Canadian Lawyer


Editorial: The bench speaks

Judges are often loath to speak to reporters. 
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Speaker's Corner: The reality of wind power contracts

Rural landowners who are approached to permit a wind turbine or turbines or associated equipment on their acreage badly need sophisticated legal advice on these complex agreements. 
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Editorial: Genetic legislation

Canadian voters have indicated, fairly consistently, that they like their economies stable and their health care socialized. As of late, they reward politicians who espouse values based on social fairness and cultural inclusivity, and punish those who come across as small-minded or protectionist.
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Speaker's Corner: Children hurt in divorce process

In litigation where custody or access to children is contested, courts are directed to canvass the views of the affected children, at least to the extent that the views can be ascertained. There are various means by which the voice of the child can be solicited. Each way has its relative advantages and disadvantages, but there are good reasons to proceed cautiously in this regard.
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Editorial: In this, they agree

The Ontario Bar Association’s new president, David Sterns, says he’ll be pushing for more digitizing of the courts. The good news is he may have a sympathetic ear from current Attorney General of Ontario Yasir Naqvi. 

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The Lawyer Therapist: Law school doesn’t have to make you sick

It’s that time of year again. Eager,  young, talented, passionate, driven minds converge on law schools across Canada to begin what they hope will be a rewarding and exciting journey in the legal profession.
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The Hill: The wrangle over bilingualism

Justice Thomas Cromwell of Atlantic Canada is retiring Sept 1. Another justice is urgently needed for the fall session.
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Editorial: Smart v. wise

In an age that glorifies Big Data and everything digital, it’s rare to hear a lone dissenting voice that advocates for face-to-face contact. But at the recent Canadian Bar Association conference in Ottawa, writer Susan Pinker advocated roundly for the value of connecting in person. It enhances our health outcomes and our sense of social connectivity in ways digital connection can’t, she says.
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Speaker's Corner: The roots of the articling crisis

Since the Great Recession of 2007-2009, there has been a lot of media commentary blaming the sometimes-bleak economic prospects of young lawyers on law schools. In this coverage, you’ll also hear complaints about the lack of utility of a law degree, the high tuition for the law school and the debt it creates, as well as the competitiveness of the job market for lawyers upon graduation.
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Speaker's Corner: Should legal aid billings be secret?

Legal Aid Ontario is reconsidering its practices around transparency in light of the province’s recent Open Data Directive. This directive requires government data to be made public unless it is exempt on a handful of grounds. In working out how to comply with this directive, LAO is consulting with stakeholders, including lawyers.
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Editorial: Trouble with texting

Law Times reports the Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled that sent text messages seized from a recipient’s phone can be used as evidence against the sender in court.
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Social Justice: Terminated employees need protection

Most employees serve at the mercy of their employers. There is little job security save for non-managerial employees of federally regulated employers, union members and employees dismissed contrary to human rights codes. Most others serve at the pleasure of their employers. Of course, some employees are highly skilled or have the ability to protect themselves in negotiated employment contracts. Job security isn’t much of a concern to them. But job security is a major concern for the majority of employees.
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Law Times poll

An estate trustee who took an ‘egregious' position in litigation has been ordered to personally pay more than $140,000 in costs. Will this ruling serve as an appropriate caution to executors on how they conduct themselves in litigation?
Yes, this will remind trustees of the potential exposure of significant awards being made against them personally.
No, it’s unlikely this ruling will dissuade executors from engaging in unreasonable conduct during litigation.