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Monday, March 7, 2016

Simmons to receive Advocates’ Society Medal

The Advocates’ Society highest honour will be bestowed upon James Simmons of Northern Ontario’s Weaver Simmons LLP. The presentation of The Advocates’ Society Medal will take place at a special ceremony and dinner at Vale Cavern in Science North, Sudbury on April 14. 

In a release announcing the award, The Advocates’ Society said Simmons has long been dedicated to serving his clients, colleagues, and community, and he “is the consummate advocate.” Simmons’ practice has been principally devoted to civil litigation involving personal injury, negligence, insurance issues of all types, commercial litigation, professional negligence, inquests, and Occupational Health and Safety matters.

“Jim and his associates like nothing better than a new challenge requiring a float plane visit wherever needed to best serve the client,” the Society stated.

Simmons was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1982 and became a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers in 1999. He served on The Advocates’ Society board of directors from 1982 until 1985 and again from 1996 until 1998. During his time on the Society’s board, Simmons was the strong voice of the north and sat on numerous committees, including the regional court management advisory committee, the north east region committee and the long trials and case management committee.

The Society said the medal is intended to honour those who have demonstrated their pre-eminence as counsel and who are acknowledged unequivocally as leaders of the bar, who have been dedicated and active members of the Society, and who have made a significant contribution to the profession of law and to the well-being of the community at large.

Le Vay appointed to LFO board of trustees

The Law Foundation of Ontario has announced the appointment of Paul Le Vay to its board of trustees. Le Vay was appointed to the board by the Attorney General of Ontario to replace outgoing trustee Chris Clifford of Bergeron Clifford LLP.

Le Vay is a partner and a certified specialist in civil litigation with Stockwoods LLP, where he has practised for 25 years. His areas of expertise include corporate-commercial and securities litigation and professional liability and regulation.

Osgoode Hall Law School honours Yolande Edwards

The Black Law Students’ Association at York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School ended Black History Month by honouring Legal Aid Ontario manager Yolande Edwards of the Scarborough Criminal Duty Counsel Office with the Honourable Lincoln Alexander ’53 Award. The award is named in honour of the pioneering efforts of the late Lincoln Alexander, a graduate of Osgoode Hall in 1953, who became the first black member of Parliament and the first black lieutenant governor of Ontario.

Law Times Poll

When it comes to modern personal devices at work, the bulk of our readers say it’s best to just leave them behind. In light of a story Law Times covered last week regarding the importance of Bring Your Own Device policies for the workplace, we asked our readers if they felt it is appropriate to use your own personal device for work-related duties. Only 42.9 per cent of the respondents said yes, it’s 2016, and using your own personal phone or laptop for work-related communication is acceptable, with clear policies in place. That left 57.1 per cent who said no, it’s not acceptable, and using a personal device for work-related matters leads to issues that can hurt both the employer and employee.

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Law Times Poll

A Law Times story this week addresses a proposed amendment to the provincial Juries Act that would repeal the rule that prevents people convicted of an offence from serving as jurors. Do you agree with this change?