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Monday, May 19, 2014

EX-LAWYER DENIED RE-ENTRY TO PROFESSION

A Law Society of Upper Canada panel has denied a lawyer who surrendered his licence to practise law in 2006 the green light to re-enter the profession after finding he has yet to prove he’s now of good character.

Roy Anthony Dullege had a long disciplinary history that included repeatedly failing to keep books and records in addition to failing to attend court on behalf of his clients.

More recently, Dullege sought permission to practise once again after resigning in 2006. Although he said he had “a lot to give” as a lawyer, the law society panel found him ill-prepared to return to the legal profession.

In its May 7 decision, the panel said it was “struck by the fact that until a few months before this hearing, more than two years after the application was filed, the applicant took relatively few steps, from a medical and legal perspective, to prepare himself for a return to the profession and to support his assertion that he is a person of good character.”

The panel also noted Dullege had practised as a paralegal after his resignation as a lawyer. At the time, the law society had yet to begin regulating paralegals. Despite making money as a paralegal, he “did not consider paying back any of his clients to whom he owed money for services not performed prior to his resignation,” according to the panel.

Meanwhile, another panel has revoked the licence of former Department of Justice lawyer Simon Paul Barker. He admitted to using clients’ trust funds to pay down his own debt. Although Barker cited mental-health issues, the panel found there wasn’t a “confirmed” case of illness. A maritime lawyer and sole practitioner more recently, Barker had worked for the Justice Department from 1993-99.

HACKLAND RESIGNS AS REGIONAL SENIOR JUDGE

The federal government has appointed Superior Court Justice James McNamara as regional senior judge of the east region.

McNamara replaces Justice Charles Hackland, who resigned his post effective May 8. McNamara had been serving as the local administrative judge in Ottawa.

Hackland has returned to the regular judicial roster in Ottawa to fill McNamara’s spot on the bench, according to the Department of Justice.

COMMUNITY CENTRE TO OFFER LEGAL SERVICES

The Davenport Perth Neighbourhood and Community Health Centre now offers legal services to low-income Ontarians by appointment.

New legal aid services offered at the centre include family law and immigration consultations, according to Legal Aid Ontario. LAO lawyers will also provide two-hour emergency domestic violence consultations and arrange no-fee mediation for eligible separating couples.

“The innovative partnership between [the centre] and LAO provides a unique opportunity for LAO to explore the delivery of legal services in a community health centre and to work holistically with the centre’s services, community programs, and the community at large to serve low-income clients,” LAO said in a news release.

Studies on access to justice have recommended making legal services available in community centres where low-income residents can seek other assistance, such as health care, for a more holistic approach to solving problems.

POLL RESULTS

The results of the latest Law Times online poll are in.

When it comes to the issues between Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Supreme Court Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, the majority of respondents are decidedly on McLachlin’s side.

Almost 87 per cent said they support McLachlin after Harper suggested she inappropriately contacted him about Justice Marc Nadon’s appointment to the Supreme Court. McLachlin has maintained she didn’t advise against any appointments but only sought to flag a potential legal issue well before the government announced Nadon’s nomination last fall.

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Law Times Poll


The Law Society of Upper Canada’s governing body has approved a proposal to create a new licence for paralegals that would train them in some aspects of family law such as form completion, uncontested divorces and motions to change. Do you agree with this move?
RESULTS ❯