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Monday, April 13, 2015

JUSTICE JUDITH SNIDER JOINS JAMS

Former Federal Court justice Judith Snider has joined mediation and arbitration service provider JAMS.

Snider will join JAMS’ Toronto resolution centre as an arbitrator and mediator in matters including administrative, environmental, intellectual property, business and commercial, and energy and utility matters.

Before joining the bench, Snider was general counsel and vice chairwoman of the National Energy Board based in Calgary. She was also a partner at Code Hunter, a boutique litigation firm in Alberta. “Justice Snider is passionate about resolving cases and committed to understanding the parties’ issues,” said Chris Poole, president and chief executive officer of JAMS.

“Her experience on the bench and working with parties to reach resolution makes her a terrific addition to our panel in Canada.”

Snider said that as both a judge and a lawyer, she has learned how “essential” alternative dispute resolution is.

“I look forward to continue doing this important work and joining the talented team in Toronto,” she said.

DUNCAN FRASER JOINS WORTZMANS

Lawyer Duncan Fraser has joined Susan Wortzman PC as vice president and senior legal counsel.

Fraser hails from the Department of Justice, where he was director and general counsel of electronic litigation and litigation support services with the litigation branch. “Under his direction, the federal Department of Justice became one of the public sector leaders in e-discovery,” Wotzmans said in an announcement last week. “Duncan was responsible for developing and providing comprehensive e-discovery strategy and litigation technology and services to over 2,000 Justice lawyers and paralegals,” the firm added, calling Fraser’s arrival a “key piece” of its strategy.

“Duncan’s legal experience and expertise in the public sector fit seamlessly into the legal services that Wortzmans provides.”

DISBARMENT STAYED PENDING APPEAL

An appeal panel has stayed a Law Society Tribunal decision to disbar a Nepean, Ont., lawyer pending his appeal.

The tribunal had revoked Luigi Savone’s licence to practise law after finding he had assisted in fraudulent real estate transactions in which purchasers obtained mortgage proceeds under false pretenses over a period spanning from February 2000 until October 2003. Savone is seeking to appeal that decision on the basis that there was an inordinate delay causing significant prejudice to him. Recently, the appeal division found he had “demonstrated that he would suffer irreparable harm if a stay pending appeal were not granted.” “The law society did not cross-examine Mr. Savone on his evidence in this regard. Revocation would shut down his practice and, in the particular circumstances, poses considerable challenges to a later resumption of practice,” wrote Mark Sandler on the panel’s behalf.

He added: “After all, Mr. Savone contends, inter alia, that the entire proceedings should have been stayed and that the findings should all be set aside, based on lack of access to relevant documents. These are two of the grounds of appeal that I cannot dismiss as frivolous.”

POLL RESULTS

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

According to the poll, 88 per cent of participants agree that class actions have gotten out of control in Canada.

Recently, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce made a joint statement with the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform saying “a tide” of class action lawsuits is a cause for concern in the world of Canadian business and lamented what it called “a laxity” in getting class actions certified. The majority of poll participants agreed class actions are costing businesses too much as judges are too willing to certify matters.   

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