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Monday, December 8, 2008

LSUC HIGHLIGHTS WOMEN’S RIGHTS

The Law Society of Upper Canada continues its Equality Public Education Equality Series this week with a Dec. 9 discussion on women’s equality rights in African and Canada.

The event - held to recognize International Human Rights Day - will feature leading human rights advocates from both countries. It is jointly hosted by the LSUC, Progress and Opportunities for Women’s Equality Rights: Africa/Canada, and the Gordon Henderson Centre for Human Rights at the University of Ottawa.

HEENAN BLAIKIE UNVEILS MERGER

Heenan Blaikie LLP last week announced that it has merged with the intellectual property firm of Ivor Hughes, adding 11 experienced IP lawyers, patent agents, and trademark agents to its practice.

“This merger demonstrates our belief in the value of intellectual property,” said Heenan Blaikie’s national co-managing partner Norman Bacal, in a release.

“In this troubled economy, many firms and companies are scaling back their operations. As a firm, we are committed to serving our clients effectively and efficiently. All the more so in these challenging times. Our goal is to continue to add value in areas where our clients require protection and advice.”

The firm noted that Hughes’ practice targets patent, trademark, copyright, and industrial design applications, along with licensing agreements and litigation related to IP infringement.“This merger with Heenan Blaikie is the best way to continue doing the work we love,” said Hughes. “Our teams share a passion for offering creative and imaginative solutions to protect our clients’ intellectual property.

Our clients will now also benefit from Heenan Blaikie’s national perspective and expertise in other important practice areas.”

E-LAWS NOW THE LAW

Ontario is now among the first jurisdictions in Canada to consider its legislation web site an official source of law.

“E-Laws provides Ontarians with easy access to Ontario’s laws,” said Attorney General Chris Bentley, in a release. “Making e-Laws an official source of law recognizes the reality of today’s modern technological environment.

Eliminating our reliance on printed publications not only makes the law more accessible but does so in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way.”

The ministry also noted that Ontario was the first province to publish its statutes and regulations online, starting in 2001. E-Laws are accessible through Justice Ontario.

The laws published online became officials sources of law on Nov. 30, via a stipulation in the Legislation Act, 2006. The new rule applies to the Source Law, Current Consolidated Law, and Period in Time Law databases on e-Laws.

KYOTO LAWSUIT NOW ON APPEAL

Friends of the Earth has resumed its legal battle with the federal government over Kyoto Protocol commitments, notifying it of an appeal of the recent Federal Court decision in the case.

“If the Federal Court’s decision was left unchallenged, Canada’s woeful inaction on the climate change crisis would be allowed to continue despite domestic law that clearly states the government must act,” said Ecojustice lawyer Hugh Wilkins, in a release.

“We simply cannot stand by while the government picks and chooses which laws to enforce. All of our laws must be upheld - even the ones the government finds inconvenient.”

The lawsuit was launched in June and seeks a court declaration that the government failed to meet legal requirements of the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act. The act called on the government to follow a plan to meet Kyoto targets, on top of putting into force regulations to fight climate change.

“We are looking to the Federal Court of Appeal to provide more guidance on the issue of justiciability,” said lawyer Chris Paliare, who is working the case with Friends of the Earth.

ESSAY CONTEST

TitlePLUS is offering $3,000 to the Canadian law student who submits the best essay on topics relevant to the practice of real estate law.

“We feel privileged to be in a position to support future members of the bar striving for academic excellence in this field,” said TitlePLUS vice president Raymond Leclair, in a release.

The contest deadline is March 31, 2009, and full contest rules are available at www.titleplus.ca.

KWINTER HONOURED

The Ontario Trial Lawyers’ Association recently highlighted the work of lawyer Alf Kwinter, naming him a leader of the personal injury bar.

“It is such an honour to be recognized by my peers, family and friends, and to have the opportunity to share the occasion with everyone who has helped make the last 34 years possible,” said Kwinter, in a release. “It was truly a beautiful evening, one that I will always remember.”

Kwinter is a founder of the firm Singer Kwinter, and has practised for over 30 years. He’s a certified specialist in civil litigation, former head of The Advocates’ Society, and a past recipient of the H. Bruce T. Hillyer Award.

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