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This Week's Issue

Panel considers bid for restorative justice for lawyers

Yamri Taddese - Monday, April 14, 2014

In what was the first argument for restorative justice for a non-aboriginal person, a Law Society of Upper Canada hearing panel has considered — but ultimately rejected — a case for rehabilitating a lawyer found guilty of misconduct related to real estate fraud.

Instead of stripping his client of her licence to practise law, the lawyer for Renata Snidr asked the panel to consider scrapping its zero-tolerance policy and replacing it with “an approach that seeks to salvage first-time or isolated offenders,” according to a recent decision.

A panel found Snidr, a Toronto lawyer, to have knowingly participated in nearly a dozen fraudulent real estate transactions. Unless there are “exceptional circumstances,” the routine remedy for such a finding is revocation of the lawyer’s licence.

“To me, that rea...


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Door opened to abuse as beneficiaries left in the cold

When Adalgisa Di Michele died in 1996, she left her house to three of her children. None of them now owns any part of the Mississauga, Ont., home thanks to a recent Ontario Court of Appeal decision on the power of an estate trustee that lawyers say leaves a door open to abuse.

SCC consideration of adviser penalties significant for lawyers

In a case with significant implications for lawyers, the Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to consider whether adviser penalties found in s. 163.2 of the Income Tax Act are penal or administrative in nature.

Editorial: Go back to the drawing board

Former Reform party leader Preston Manning got it right in expressing his concerns about the fair elections act last week.

Speaker's Corner: Feds set to discard years of use-based trademark law

Last month, the Canadian government proposed the most important changes to the Trademarks Act since 1953 in its budget implementation bill.

Focus: Snowden leaks create pressure for security reform

Recent allegations that the Communications Security Establishment Canada has been tracking Canadians through free Wi-Fi networks and swapping information with foreign governments have focused the ongoing Internet privacy debate on the collection of metadata. Proposals for parliamentary oversight and the inclusion of metadata in privacy legislation are now on the table in the hope of protecting Canadians from illegal monitoring.

Bits & Bytes: Lawyers challenged to take a basic technology competency audit

While there’s widespread concern about the pace at which the legal sector is embracing technology, it’s hard for people to really know if a law firm is using it efficiently or if it’s just marginally better at it than the competition.

Inside Story

Monday, April 14, 2014

10 JUDGES NAMED TO ONTARIO COURT
Ten new judges will join the Ontario Court of Justice bench on April 16.

The appointees include Farquharson Adamson & Affleck LLP senior partner John Adamson, Barr & O’Brien partner Larry Bernard O’Brien, and assistant Crown attorneys Pamela Borghesan, Robert Wadden, and John Condon.

Howard Ryan Kelford Knott & Dixon partner Richard Knott, McAuley & Partners lawyer Sarah Trach, Webber Schroeder Goldstein Abergel senior partner Matthew Webber, Crown attorney Marquis Felix, and Catherine McDonald, who has had her own private practice for the past nine years, round out the list of new judges.

BLAKES TOPS BRAND INDEX
Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP has come out on top of the 2014 Canadian law firm brand index.

The index, compiled by Acritas US Inc., ranks law firms based on favourability among general counsel at Canadian organizations with revenues over $50 million.

Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP came in second place, followed by Stikeman...

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RT @LegalFeedsblog: New blog post: Appeal court upholds Federal Court declaration of Métis as 'Indians' http://t.co/DsWoCCAzRV
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Yelling obscenities at police may be deplorable but not necessarily a criminal disturbance: appeal court http://t.co/P7cAt5gCg7

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