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Monday, January 18, 2016

Osgoode lands legal giant

Heavy-hitting retired Supreme Court of Canada judge Marshall Rothstein has joined Osgoode Hall Law School at York University as a distinguished visiting professor. Lorne Sossin, dean of the law school, announced Jan. 7 that Rothstein has accepted the appointment on a one-year term. Although retired from the Supreme Court bench in August 2015, a position he held since 2006, Winnipeg-born Rothstein has been serving as associate counsel at Hunter Litigation Chambers in Vancouver, where his primary focus has been as an arbitrator in commercial and public law matters.

“It is exciting for me to be returning to Osgoode, which I have had the pleasure of visiting many times over the years,” Rothstein said in a statement announcing his appointment. I look forward to visiting Osgoode, engaging with the students and imparting what insight I can. I’m sure that the experience will enrich my understanding of law and legal education.”

Rothstein, called to the Manitoba bar in 1966, has had a long and distinguished career that began with the former Thorvaldson Eggertson Saunders Mauro and the later merged Aikins MacAulay & Thorvaldson LLP firm, where he served as partner from 1972 to 1992. As visiting professor, he will be involved in a broad range of academic activities centred around the school’s Intellectual Property Law and Technology program and in the areas of tax and administrative law.

LFO grant bolsters free legal help to resettle refugees

With the Government of Canada reaching its goal to resettle the first wave of 10,000 Syrian refugees last week, there’s significant financial help from the Law Foundation of Ontario to ensure the process goes smoother for those who have arrived and those still making their way. The LFO announced last week that it has granted $90,000 to the partnership of Lifeline Syria and the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program to provide free legal work for those refugees settling in the Toronto area. Nationally, more than 1,000 lawyers and supervised law students have volunteered with the sponsorship support program to provide the pro bono services.

Gowlings grows and Santini merges

Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP has announced the admission of 17 new partners to its Canadian offices. Four partners are in the Toronto-based offices in the areas of financial services, marketing and regulatory affairs, intellectual property, and tax law. The firm announced the appointments come in advance of its impending combination with Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, a leading UK-based firm, to create Gowling WLG later this year. Meanwhile, the Ottawa-based firms of Hamilton Appotive LLP and Kelly Santini LLP announced that, as of Jan. 1, the two firms have merged. Both formed about 40 years ago; the integrated firm continues under the moniker of Kelly Santini LLP.

Law Times Poll

When it comes to the question of equal pay for seemingly equal work, there’s an equal point of view from our readers. Last week’s poll asked participants if they agree with the Case Management Masters Remuneration Commission findings that masters are underpaid and should receive the same pay and benefits as their provincial court peers. It was a dead heat with 50 per cent saying yes, the masters’ pay is inadequate for their level of authority and responsibility. The other half say nay, their duties and responsibilities do not compare and neither should their compensation.

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It's unknown how widely police in Ontario utilize controversial surveillance techniques that can capture private data from non-targets in criminal investigations. Do you think there should be formal requirements to release this information?
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