BILL 24: FRIEND OR FOE TO ANIMALS | PRO BONO & LOW BONO PROGRAMS
O CTOBER 2012 | www.cba.org/bc
“Dangerous” Dogs: Bones Stacked Against Them PAGE 12
NEWS BARTALK EDITOR
Cover photo: Rebeka Breder with her very gentle dog Tero. Photo taken by Pete Poulin.
EDITORIAL BOARD CHAIR
Michael Welsh EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS
Candice Alderson Sandra Harper Ellen Hong Oana Hyatt David Madani Gail McKay Sarah Nelligan Rose Shawlee
BARTALK SENIOR EDITOR
Maureen Cameron STAFF CONTRIBUTORS
Bianca Bishop Simon Bursell Tanya Galic Stacy Kirpichova Catherine Lau Stuart Rennie Jennifer Weber
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CBA NATIONAL NEWS
Caroline Nevin, CBABC Executive Director, Wins 2012 CBA Jack Innes Achievement Award “An association professional in every sense of the word, Caroline is a creative and innovative leader whose foresight and strategic thinking have served the B.C. Branch of the Canadian Bar Association for 15 years,” says B.C. Branch Past President Sharon Matthews. “She has a vision for the CBABC and the skills to implement it.” Widely recognized and praised for her forward Caroline Nevin receiving the Jack Innes thinking, Ms. Nevin has led Achievement Award from Jack Innes on the B.C. Branch through a August 11 at the Council Awards Luncheon. period of significant growth when membership in the Association became optional rather than mandatory for all B.C. lawyers. To read more, visit: \\
This publication is intended for information purposes only and the information herein should not be applied to specific fact circumstances without the advice of counsel. The British Columbia Branch of the Canadian Bar Association represents more than 6,700 B.C. members and is dedicated to improving and promoting access to justice, reviewing legislation, initiating law reform measures and advancing and improving the administration of justice.
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VOLUME 24 / NUMBER 5
4 FROM THE PRESIDENT Get Reconnected by Kerry L. Simmons 5
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Equality, Outrage and Optimism by Caroline Nevin
PRACTICE TALK Managing Clients by David J. Bilinsky
DAVE’S TECH TIPS
NOTHING OFFICIAL Drinking Way Too Much Kool-Aid by Tony Wilson
SECTION UPDATE To Our Section Volunteers Aboriginal Law – Vancouver Island Intellectual Property and Technology Law Alternate Dispute Resolution – Vancouver
11 SECTION CHAIR SPOTLIGHT Kenneth Armstrong Chair, Sections Standing Committee
2012/2013 EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
12 “DANGEROUS” DOGS: BONES STACKED AGAINST THEM by Rebeka Breder 13 BILL 24: FRIEND OR FOE TO ANIMALS by Marcie Moriarty 14 THE SECRETS TO SUCCESSFUL PRO-BONO PROGRAMS by William Roberts 15 UNLIMITED SHADES OF GREY by Jamie Maclaren 16 THE “PROS” OF PRO BONO by Christine Murray
Inside This Issue BarTalk goes to the dogs. We look at aspects of Animal Law – “dangerous dog” laws and how the provincial government is replacing judicial review of animal seizure and destruction orders. Our other theme is work done by law firms to foster pro bono and a “low bono” program of reduced fees.
News and Events 2 Caroline Nevin, CBABC Executive Director, Wins 2012 CBA Jack Innes Achievement Award 18 CBA Wraps Up Another Canadian Legal Conference International Bar Association Conference in Dublin Robert Brun, QC Takes Over as CBA President 19 New Initiatives on Access, Practice and Inclusion Launched at CLC Section News Resolution for New Membership Fee Structure Passed by National Council 20 Lawyers with Pride Photos CLEBC Update The Lawyer Show 2012 21 Legislative Update Branch & Bar Calendar More of Lawyers with Pride Photos CBABC Seventh Annual Branch Conference San Francisco, California on November 23-25 22 Practice Tip for the Family Lawyer in Provincial Court Courthouse Libraries BC’s Reading Room: An Online Library for Lawyers Christina J. Cook on Pro Bono: It Can Take Less Time Than a CFL Game
Also In This Issue
23 LAW FOUNDATION OF BRITISH COLUMBIA 24 PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT & MEMBER SERVICES 25 DISPLAY ADS 26 BAR MOVES 27 NEW MEMBERS OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 3
FROM THE PRESIDENT KERRY L. SIMMONS
Get Reconnected What CBABC is working on for members
utumn is my favourite time of year. It is a season of connection. We gather our family and friends together. Kids connect with their school friends. We are reconnected to our work after the summer, focussing on what needs to be accomplished by the end of the calendar year. We return to volunteering and our recreational activities. It is also a time for reconnection with the CBABC. We’ve begun a new year in the CBABC with Section meetings gathering us together to connect us to our colleagues and developments in the law. There is a sense of purpose and renewed energy. Provincial Council and the Executive Committee have set a course for the year and our hundreds of volunteers on committees, task forces, conferences, fora and Sections are ready to execute that plan with the support of the Branch staff. What’s your connection to the CBABC? Do you attend Section meetings? Are you one of our volunteers? Do you support the Battle of the Bar Bands? Are you using PracticeLink? Do you rely on the CBABC to advocate for the legal profession, for better access to legal services, for funding for legal aid, for improvements to the administration of justice? There are many opportunities to connect with the CBABC and if you aren’t sure what that connection is, go online to our website (www.cba.org/bc), Facebook (www.facebook.com/ canadianbarassociationbcbranch) and Twitter (@CBA_BC) to discover more opportunities. Your connection can and should enhance your practice. Maybe your connection is BarTalk. BarTalk has always been a great source of information about Section activity, new ideas, and changes in the law and in our profession. It is my hope that throughout 4 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
the next few issues of BarTalk, you will look to this column for updates on the ongoing advocacy work and initiatives of the CBABC. I would like you to be connected to that work and know what your organization is working on for the
The CBABC’s strength lies in the diversity of perspectives of our members. benefit of our members, the legal profession and the public. This fall, the CBABC is examining the report entitled “A Criminal Justice System for the 21st Century” authored by Geoff Cowper, QC, which was released in late August by the government. The report is the result of six months of consultation and consideration by Mr. Cowper, which included the
CBABC’s report submitted to him in June entitled “Justice In Time.” The CBABC formed a nine-person Advisory Panel of lawyers and former judges with knowledge of the criminal justice system and legal aid. The Panel produced our report with 25 recommendations based on the combined result of years of research, dialogue and connections with all the justice system participants. The government intends to release a White Paper shortly in response to Mr. Cowper’s report. The CBABC will respond to the White Paper and continue its efforts to connect and collaborate with the justice system participants. The CBABC knows that the greater level of understanding that can be reached through these connections can result in timely action that will have a positive impact on our justice system. Timely action with impact. It bears repeating. So this is another opportunity for you to connect. If you read the report and the White Paper, please send your thoughts about them to me at email@example.com. The CBABC’s strength lies in the diversity of perspectives of our members.
Kerry L. Simmons
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR CAROLINE NEVIN
Equality, Outrage and Optimism Re-igniting commitment to our ideals
was among many who watched coverage of the recent Republican and Democratic conventions in the USA. We have good reason to observe American politics with concern and care; what happens in elections south of the 49th parallel inevitably impacts Canadian life (and it certainly makes for great entertainment!). Although it’s easy to be cynical about the rhetoric and pollster-driven messaging, what resonated deeply for me was the underlying theme of encouragement and support to those who are struggling to survive and thrive in an unequal society. Canada has historically placed great value on ensuring equality of opportunity and access for those who are the least privileged among us. When our social ideals and programs were first conceived, it was the poorest and least empowered who were top of mind. The problem we now face is that it’s not enough. Increasingly, as Chief Justice McLachlin and Chief Justice Finch have clearly articulated, those who face the highest barriers include the marginally employed and middle class. One of the great challenges for those engaged in the fight to ensure access to justice is this: while there are still some programs and services for the very poorest among us, there is almost nothing for those who have a bit more. The challenge of fulfilling our commitment to equality of access to justice has never been more relevant or more urgent. All levels of court report increasing difficulty coping with higher and higher percentages of unrepresented litigants. In his report “Foundation for Change,” Public Commissioner Len Doust, QC outlined in painful, moving detail the stories and faces behind those numbers and the underfunding of legal aid in B.C. Most recently, Geoff Cowper, QC conducted a specific review of how criminal matters are handled,
and found a complex pattern of systemic strain and backlog that has placed thousands of cases at risk of dismissal before resolution. Legal aid dollars – dramatically cut 10 years ago in B.C. – must first be put to criminal matters by law, reducing the funds available for family and civil matters. Every day, people get into legal difficulty and have to resolve their issue without adequate legal advice and representation, or walk away from enforcing their legal rights. Either option has a cost to our government and society, because unresolved or poorly resolved legal problems come with a high price, in later health, social and justice system costs. What is most disturbing is the impact that a prolonged state of inadequate and unequal access to justice has had on our social conscience. We believe in our hearts that Canada is superior to our southern neighbour when it comes
to powerful social infrastructure and a tangible commitment to equality. Yet, the facts clearly show that we are falling short on our ideals. When we accept our federal and provincial politicians’ message that money isn’t available to support meaningful access to justice, we give them a free pass on fulfilling their most basic responsibility: using our collective wealth to deliver equal access to social goods. As the US conventions demonstrated, an election year is a good time to ignite a simmering sense of dismay and outrage over the current state of affairs, and at the same time demand a lot more optimism from those seeking our votes. We have bright people within and outside the justice system who are ready to take on the challenges of making it better for all; what’s needed is a commitment from our political leaders to deliver the resources it takes to make a significant difference. In the words of Romney and Obama, we need to Believe in our ability to realize our ideals, and move Forward to make it happen!
firstname.lastname@example.org OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 5
practicetalk DAVID J. BILINSKY
Managing Clients Dealing with the Dog Files... r
You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog Cryin’ all the time... You ain’t no friend of mine r
– Music and Lyrics by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, recorded and performed by Elvis Presley.
e all have them – the dog files. They sit there on the corner of our desks or stuffed into a filing cabinet, ignored. Unfortunately, trying to forget these files doesn’t make them go away. At some point we all need to deal with these files as ignoring them only leads to client complaints as well as possible malpractice concerns, not to mention stress. How you deal with a dog file all depends on the particular circumstances: DISRESPECTFUL AND RUDE CLIENT
A rude client creates tension, undermines your good staff and adversely affects the ability of the firm to handle good clients. If such clients refuse to treat people properly after being duly warned, then they have just earned the right to search for a new lawyer. THE DEBTOR CLIENT
If you are working for a client who refuses and/or continually delays paying your fees, then you are telling this client that you are not worth the fees that you charge. This is not only a problem from a cash-flow perspective, it places you and your family in potential financial difficulty – particularly the longer it goes on. Establish specific and written billing, trust replenishment and accounts 6 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
receivable payment requirements in your retainer agreement. Enforce the rules. The deeper the client gets into you, the harder it will be for you to withdraw. THE DIFFICULT CLIENT
We all know who these clients are. They question our advice at every turn, they constantly call at odd hours or drop into your office without an appointment, they insist that things “be done now,” they question your invoices and refuse to do the tasks assigned to them. Firing the difficult client may itself be difficult but it may ultimately be the most satisfying thing you can do. Indeed I know a lawyer who gives his secretary an annual gift and empowers her in selecting one client to fire each year. Talk about improving office morale! The typical reason given to the client is that there has been a “serious loss of confidence between the lawyer and client.”
THE CASE OUTSIDE YOUR COMFORT ZONE
In some cases, you are hesitant dealing with a matter as it lies outside your typical practice area(s). Notwithstanding the pressure from the client to take the file, these types of matters are best left to a lawyer who practises in that area. You can continue to lend moral support but leave the actual handling of the file to a colleague best able to handle it. HOW DO YOU FIRE A CLIENT?
First, check your retainer agreement for specific governing provisions. Next, follow the guidelines in Chapter 10 of the Professional Conduct Handbook in severing the solicitor-client relationship. Give reasonable notice – particularly if there are upcoming deadlines. Surrender the file unless you are exerting a solicitor’s lien. Refund any funds remaining in trust after payment of all fees and disbursements. Cooperate with new counsel. Comply with Continued on page 7 >>> The views expressed herein are strictly those of the author and may not be shared by the Law Society of British Columbia.
David J. Bilinsky is the Practice Management Advisor for the Law Society of British Columbia. Email: email@example.com Blog: www.thoughtfullaw.com GO ONLINE FOR MORE INFORMATION
dave’s techtips Practice Management Software Practice Management Software can help automate the task of finding which files or clients in your list have not had any activity with a set date range (that may indicate you have been neglecting them...). Here is a selection of different practice management applications and the reports they can generate: PCLAW www.lexisnexis.com/law-firmpractice-management/pclaw PCLaw can run a Client Summary Report showing the files that have not had any activity on them after a predetermined date by checking the “No activity after [date]” box from the Matters tab (click Advanced on the bottom of the Report Selections to view the Matters tab) from the Client Summary window and clicking Run. AMICUS ATTORNEY www.amicusattorney.com Amicus Attorney will remind you
to call a client according to a user-defined time period – ensuring that you keep in touch with all of your clients at least within a determined time. Amicus Attorney will also remind you if you have not posted any entries within a certain time on a file reminding you not to allow files to go stale and unworked. CLIO www.goclio.com
Clio, a cloud-based practice management product, will run real-time reports on Client Activity as well as monitor task completion on specific client matters. PRACTICEMASTER www.tabs3.com/products/practicemaster/pm_comparison.html The Client Inactivity Report above can be used to identify clients and cases with no activity in a specified time frame.
This report helps you determine which cases need follow up and makes it easy to identify cases that should be marked inactive. The period of inactivity can be defined as the last number of days, weeks, months, or years. When the report is displayed on screen using the Preview option, you can mouse over individual records and by clicking, drill-down to the record containing the last activity for the client. MYCASE www.mycaseinc.com MyCase, billing itself as “social practice management” is a newer cloud-based product in the Practice Management area. It allows you to generate a Time Entries by Case/Matter report. This report shows time and expense entries for a particular case/matter. You can filter the report to only show entries made within a specific time period. There are of course, many other practice management products available for lawyers to keep on top of their files and clients and ensure that you never allow a file to go stale. © 2012 David J. Bilinsky
Continued from page 6
any court decisions regarding withdrawal governing the specific area of practice. Prepare yourself to respond to a complaint filed by the client, particularly if you have a
difficult client or are trying to collect unpaid fees and disbursements. If necessary, report a possible claim to LIF. Call the practice advisors at the LSBC if you are at all hesitant
on how to best deal with the matter. All in all, take steps – now – to deal with the dog files... for as they say, they ain’t no friend of yours or mine.... OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 7
nothingofficial TONY WILSON
Drinking Way Too Much Kool-Aid Why do some Americans believe such stupid stuff?
t’s sad to watch a great swath of the country that put 12 men on the moon become so profoundly dumb over the past four years. Sometimes it’s as if many Tea Party Republicans are drinking from the same Kool-Aid jug; one that doesn’t kill so much as it turns drinkers into brain-dead, gun-toting, religious zombies fuelled by lies, bigotry and an irrational hatred for the black guy that actually nailed Osama Bin Laden. One example is Judge Tom Head of Texas, who believes that if President Obama is re-elected, U.S. sovereignty will be handed over to the United Nations, and the U.S. will plunge into civil war. He says he’ll “take up arms” to get rid of Obama. And yes, he’s a judge. Then there’s Rush Limbaugh (the man who accused a law student of being a whore because she wanted birth control pills), accusing the Obama administration of tampering with the weather forecast so that the GOP convention would cancel another day’s slander and muckraking due to Hurricane Isaac. And the day I’m writing this, action star Chuck Norris said that if Obama is re-elected, “America will suffer a Thousand Years of Darkness.” I’m not making this stuff up folks. As an amateur fact checker, watching the GOP convention gave me the willies. The level of political discourse was so low, it reminded me of the scandal where football players for the New Orleans Saints were paid bonuses for inflicting career ending injuries on opposing players. One speaker who sadly lost her son in Afghanistan seemed to blame the President, rather than the Taliban for shooting down her son’s helicopter. Another said the U.S. ought to have gone to war in 1979 to stop the Iranian Revolution, (forgetting Iran has the right to self-determination and forgetting altogether a quagmire called Vietnam). Two white delegates
8 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
racially taunted a black CNN camera operator by throwing peanuts at her. Even Fox news called out the VP candidate Paul Ryan for the “greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech.” The narrative of the Republicans (which has, to a great extent, been taken over by the nutbars, racists, flat-earthers and “legitimate rape” apologists in the Tea Party) is “we built it,” forgetting, I suppose, that much of early America was actually “built” by slaves. They also conveniently ignore the role of government in building those public services that the private sector didn’t because a profit couldn’t be made. “A government that builds roads and airports, funds police and fire departments, builds and maintains water and sewer systems, administers the justice system, and which underwrites education and Medicare, does nothing important or of value,” they say. “So lower my taxes,” they screech.
“Make government so small it could be drowned in a bathtub,” they rant. (That is, until the next hurricane or earthquake). To cite examples closer to home, would the B.C. Ferry system have been created without WAC Bennett? Would the Coquihalla Highway, UBC, SFU, UVic or our education system exist without government involvement? As a Journalism School dropout (I could only become a regular columnist after practising law), I get a kick out of The Newsroom on HBO and its fictional anchor, Will McIvoy who disparages the Anschluss of his Republican party by the Tea Party. “Ideological purity” he says, “compromise as weakness, a fundamentalist belief in scriptural literalism, denying science, unmoved by facts, undeterred by new information, a hostile fear of progress…. They can call themselves the Tea Party. They can call themselves conservatives and they can even call themselves Republicans, though Republicans certainly shouldn’t. But we should call them what they are. The American Taliban.” Bono once said “The World Needs More Canada.” I think the United States needs more Canada. And way less Kool-Aid. The views expressed herein are strictly those of Tony Wilson and do not reflect the opinions of the Law Society of British Columbia, CBABC, or their respective members.
feature 2012/2013 EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Kerry L. Simmons PRESIDENT
Dean Crawford VICE PRESIDENT
Cook Roberts LLP Victoria
Heenan Blaikie LLP Vancouver
Sharon Matthews PAST PRESIDENT
Alex Shorten SECRETARY-TREASURER
Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman Vancouver
Alex Shorten, Barrister & Solicitor Vancouver
Kenneth Armstrong OFFICER
Jennifer Chow OFFICER
Stewart & Company Vancouver
Department of Justice Canada Vancouver
Carmen Rogers OFFICER
Clint Sadlemyer OFFICER
Crown Counsel â€“ Victoria Victoria
Fort St. John Crown Counsel Fort St. John
Jasroop Grewal YOUNG LAWYERS REPRESENTATIVE Pacific Law Group Vancouver
To read more about each Executive go online: www.cba.org/bc/About_Us/main/executive.aspx \\
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 9
sections SECTION UPDATE
To Our Section Volunteers
Keep Current Year in Review With the conclusion of the u Canadian Legal Conference and Upcoming Meetings. in August, we marked the beginTo Our Section Volunteers Thank You and Welcome From the Sections Department
Aboriginal Law Vancouver Island Section Annual Report: 2011/2012 Submitted by: Drew Mildon, Woodward & Company, Outgoing Chair, 2011/2012
Intellectual Property and Technology Law Section Annual Report: 2011/2012 Submitted by: Vincent Yip, McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Chair
ning and ending of our Section Executives’ terms. In 2011/2012, 414 of you devoted your time and energies to organizing meetings and helping your colleagues gain valuable knowledge and networking opportunities. For those who are not continuing on for the 2012/2013 term, we thank you greatly for your participation in keeping our Sections active and vibrant. Over the past Section year, you have collectively organized more than 378 Section meetings and events, of which a third were made available to remote attendees. Our survey feedback from remote attendees shows a great appreciation for Section meetings that have been made accessible to those all across the province. We would like to extend a warm welcome to our new officers. Altogether, we will have a strong group of 421 volunteers committed to supporting our 78 Sections.
Aboriginal Law Vancouver Island Section Annual Report The Section held five successful meetings over the past 2011/2012 Section year. Outgoing Co-Chair, Drew Mildon submitted the following in his annual report: “It has been a tremendous pleasure to once again serve as a Co-Chair with such a fine group of individuals. I continue to be amazed at the generosity of time my peers and colleagues demonstrate in their
u Alternate Dispute Resolution Vancouver Upcoming Meeting: October 23, 2012 Speaker: Neil Hain, Solvit Dispute Resolution Topic: Early Resolution of Complaints Made to Professional Regulatory Bodies
10 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
willingness to contribute to the Section. I will very much miss playing this fun and essential role, and in particular attendance at Provincial Council meetings. Clearly, with the advent of required Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credits, the role of the Section has become more and more essential. Many of us depend on the CPD aspect to provide us with essential hours. We are looking forward to an already-scheduled Practice Management session coming this September from the Law Society.”
Intellectual Property and Technology Law Section Annual Report Vincent Yip is continuing in his role as Chair of the Intellectual Property and Technology Law Section for the 2012/2013 Year. Vincent reports that the “Section is doing quite well. We have had great attendance at all of our Section events and we have been able to provide our Section members with informative and interesting sessions. Of note is that we held our first joint Section meeting with the Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section, and we look forward to hosting more joint Section meetings with other Sections. In addition, we were one of the first Sections to make use of CBABC’s Webinar Platform to allow a representative of the Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission to present through video conference to our Section members. This not only minimized any travel costs but allowed our Section members to hear from someone that we would
not be able to bring to Vancouver. Our Section meeting on video game law in June attracted many students and young lawyers, and we look to build on that interest over the next several years.”
SECTION CHAIR SPOTLIGHT
Alternate Dispute Resolution Upcoming Meeting October 23, 2012 Save-the-date to join the
uAlternate Dispute Resolution-
Vancouver Section for a stimulating meeting, entitled “Early Resolution of Complaints Made to Professional Regulatory Bodies.” If you missed this presentation at the recent CLE Dispute Resolution Conference, here is your chance! Section Chair, Neil Hain will lead the session. Drawing from examples of various professional regulators across the province, he will examine the key ingredients for effective and early resolution of complaints made about professionals to their regulators. We anticipate a discussion will follow, identifying ethical issues often facing mediators/arbitrators and the potential means of redress. We look forward to your participation of what is sure to be an interactive and dynamic session. Details and registration will be \\
available on the Sections Calendar:
www.cba.org/bc/Sections_Groups/ sections/mtg.aspx To enrol in Alternate Dispute Resolution – Vancouver and other Sections for the 2012/2013 term, CBA members may go online: www.cba. org/bc/PD/main/section_enrolment.aspx or contact the Sections Department for assistance.
Kenneth Armstrong Chair, Sections Standing Committee Ken practises insurance defence litigation with Stewart & Company in Vancouver. He was called to the Bar in British Columbia in 1996 and has practised in Vancouver and Westminster County since. He has been a member of Provincial Council, as a Section Chair or elected member, virtually non-stop since 1997/98. He served on the Executive Committee from 1999 to 2002, as a Young Lawyers Representative and an Officer. He is also a curler and a dedicated Little League Baseball volunteer and he recently began coaching boys’ smallside soccer. Ken had served as Chair of the Professional Development Committee for the last four years and is looking forward to chairing the Sections Standing Committee as part of his Executive Committee responsibilities.
GO ONLINE FOR MORE INFORMATION
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 11
features REBEKA BREDER
“Dangerous” Dogs: Bones Stacked Against Them “Dangerous” dog laws in B.C.
icture this: A friendly and playful dog, Cody, somehow escapes his backyard when his owner is out, and gets into a kerfuffle with another dog. Apparently, it’s the other dog’s fault, but there are no other witnesses other than the other dog’s guardians. Animal Control comes to the scene, seizes Cody and then phones Cody’s owner to say that Cody has been impounded and put on a destruction order. Cody is thrown into solitary confinement for months, with very little human and dog interaction other than his owner’s occasional visits, which are at the mercy of Animal Control. Cody’s owner does everything she can think of to convince Animal Control that Cody has never done anything like this before. All of the letters of reference Cody’s owner sends to Animal Control from friends, neighbours and dog owners from off leash parks, all of whom attest to Cody’s friendly character, have no effect. Instead, Animal Control pursues the destruction order through the City’s legal department. Cody’s owner eventually gets her day in court, but at this point, Cody has deteriorated so much – both mentally and physically – that the pound keepers testify there is no hope of rehabilitating him and they have reasonable grounds to believe that Cody will do this again. A destruction order is made, and Cody is put to death.
12 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
Unfortunately, this type of situation can, and does, happen in British Columbia. Here is why. Under the Vancouver Charter and the Community Charter, a “dangerous” dog is one who A. has killed or seriously injured a person, B. has killed or seriously injured a domestic animal, while in a public space or while on private property, other than property owned or occupied by the person responsible for the dog, or C. an animal control officer has reasonable grounds to believe is likely to kill or seriously injure a person. The courts have interpreted “seriously” broadly to include any puncture in the skin, regardless of the long-term effects of the alleged injury. “Reasonable grounds” has also been used liberally by courts so that as long as an Animal Control Officer testifies that he or she believes the dog will do it again, the courts can rely on their statements; while courts consider other evidence, such as a dog’s past behaviour, and expert animal behaviourist testimony, they do not need to do so. Courts have wide discretion to decide whether a dog fits the definition of “dangerous.” And if the dog falls under (a), (b) or (c), the dog is well on its way to death row.
One of the many problems with the “dangerous” dog laws in British Columbia is that the process – from impoundment to trial – is unreasonably long and does not provide the “defendant” dog guardians with a fair chance to save their “Cody.” Even if one is lucky enough to afford the thousands of dollars it takes to get legal counsel and expert witnesses, or find a lawyer willing to defend the dog at a reduced hourly rate, the dog will likely need further expensive veterinary care if he is freed from the pound. The other problem is that the dog can be impounded as a “dangerous” dog even if the dog does not physically injure someone or another animal. Under our current laws, Animal Control only needs to have “reasonable grounds” to believe that the dog is dangerous. This gives far too much discretion to Animal Control officers who are often not qualified animal behaviourists to determine whether the dog is truly aggressive or dangerous. One of the first questions a lawyer should ask her client is whether the dog was seized from private property. If it was, Animal Control must obtain a warrant for doing so, yet often enough, Animal Control wrongfully seizes a dog without one. The issue of “dangerous” dogs is hotly debated. Proper solutions, however, can be achieved that will balance the protection of property rights and animal welfare, and ensure public safety. Rebeka Breder is an Animal Law lawyer at Boughton Law Corporation in Vancouver, B.C.
Bill 24: Friend or Foe to Animals
Enhancing animal welfare or red tape?
he British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ (the “Society”) mandate is to protect and enhance the quality of life for domestic, farm and wild animals in B.C. Enforcement of this mandate is enabled by the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 372 (the “Act”). Bill 24 contains some significant changes to the Act. The question remains, were these changes necessary and do they, as the government claims, enhance animal welfare? The mass killing of sled dogs in Whistler following the 2010 Winter Olympics prompted widespread public support for stronger animal protection laws. Changes to the Act ensued, with the provincial government proclaiming amendments that establish some of the strongest animal cruelty laws in Canada. Bill 24, which focuses on transparency and a new administrative appeal process, was introduced under this same umbrella. Under the old Act, the owner of animals seized by the Society had fourteen days to provide written notice to the Society seeking return of their animals. If a dispute was received, a comprehensive disclosure process was triggered and submissions from the animal owner were reviewed by the Society. Decisions on whether animals should be returned were guided
by a “best interest” test and could be appealed to the B.C. Supreme Court. While these decisions were being made, the animals remained in the custody of the Society. On average, it took fifteen days for the Society to render a decision, and if that decision was appealed, it took on average 75 days before the court rendered judgment. In the past six years, approximately 220 disputes were received by the Society and of the 67 decisions made not to return animals, seven were appealed to the B.C. Supreme Court. So the question is, was this system in need of revision? Bill 24 now makes the B.C. Farm Industry Review Board (“BCFIRB”), instead of the Supreme Court, the forum for appeal. BCFIRB currently exercises regulatory and adjudicative functions in its supervision of B.C. regulated marketing boards and farm practices complaints. With Bill 24, the BCFIRB’s new powers include either upholding the decision of the Society or returning animals to the owner, and assessing costs of care under the Act.
Regardless of the forum of review, these changes do not materially change animal welfare protection. While Bill 24’s main focus is the creation of an administrative tribunal, it also provides the Minister of Agriculture with the power to require the Society to report on matters that are outside of the scope of its enforcement function. This would be unique to the Society, as other non-profit organizations in B.C. are not subject to similar broad scope disclosure. To suggest, as the government has, that this Bill “enhances animal welfare” could be misleading. It may be more appropriate to label Bill 24 as “enhancing seized animal owner welfare.” A mechanism for oversight of the Society’s decisions and transparency is essential, and existed in the form of the B.C. Supreme Court prior to Bill 24. The administrative tribunal has yet to hear its first appeal, so only time will tell if the government’s claims that the addition of such a body will lead to a “quicker and more cost-effective dispute-resolution process for animal owners and the BC SPCA,” or if Bill 24 will simply lead to seized animals being kept for longer periods in shelters. Marcie Moriarty, B.Sc., LL.B., General Manager, Cruelty Investigations, BC SPCA. www.spca.bc.ca. OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 13
features WILLIAM ROBERTS
The Secrets to Successful Pro-Bono Programs
How to maximise the effectiveness of CSR
anadian lawyers have a long history of offering pro bono services. For many, it’s a great way of giving back to their community, gaining experience, or supporting a cause they’re particularly passionate about. Pro bono work is good for law firms too. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives are often appreciated by employees and wellreceived by clients. However, while many law firms encourage participation in pro bono work, often there is little structure behind these programs. As a result, the programs can lack substance and/or are not sufficiently embedded into the corporate culture of the firm. So how do you ensure your pro bono initiative is a success? Here are some recommendations: C OMMITTEE: Create a committee to develop and oversee the execution of the program. If people are made accountable, the program will have a better chance of success. POLICY: Develop a formal probono policy. This policy needs to include: an outline of the vision for the initiative; details on who is eligible to participate (ideally everyone in the firm); the process for participating; and how pro bono cases will be managed by the firm’s administrative system. DEFINE WHAT “PRO BONO” MEANS: The concept of a “pro bono program” means different
14 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
things to different people. It’s important to explicitly state what “pro bono” means for your firm. Commonly “pro bono” means offering legal services in civil matters for disadvantaged or low income individuals, donating time to legal information clinics or to charitable, religious, civic, community, public health, and educational organizations. At Lawson Lundell, all of these activities are classified as “pro bono.” Some examples of recent work include: providing legal advice to a society working to connect aspiring farmers with owners of unused land; assisting an individual to have a Certificate of Incapacity vacated; incorporating an organization that has developed technology to identify handicapped parking spaces to municipal bylaw officials for ticketing as a charity for tax purposes; and working with the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) on a variety of matters, and, most recently, by appearing on their behalf at the Supreme Court of Canada in a Facebook
defamation case (A.B. by her Litigation Guardian, C.D., v. Bragg Communications). CAUSES: Will any cause be supported or will a particular issue be prioritised, such as environmental causes? Often the cause supported is the personal choice of the lawyer. However, given the commercial realities of how law firms work, it is important to define, or at least consider, the parameters of the program before launch. TIME: To encourage participation, law firms should consider a guideline for hours to be spent on pro bono files each year. At Lawson Lundell, up to 50 hours of pro bono work annually will be counted as billable time when evaluating performance. CONTINUED PROMOTION: Once
the program has been established, regularly remind employees about the initiative. Given the billable system in law firms, time is precious and it’s easy for pro bono projects to be forgotten. Use internal communication channels to remind people about the scheme and encourage participation. There is a great deal of value in pro bono work, both for law firms and the lawyers themselves. However the success of the program is dependent on how it is managed – so take the time to develop the vision and the structure of the program. It will be rewarding in the long-run. William Roberts, Partner, Lawson Lundell LLP
Unlimited Shades of Grey
“Low Bono” arrives in Vancouver
or Access Pro Bono and its hundreds of volunteer lawyers, nothing is as black and white as the definition of pro bono; something is either pro bono or it’s not. Legal services are provided to people and non-profit organizations of limited means for zero compensation, or they’re not considered pro bono. This unyielding perspective is crude and fully disconnected from the simple translation of pro bono from Latin as “for the good,” but necessary to give relevance and integrity to pro bono as a functional concept. If the concept is stretched to include contingency fees or unpaid bills or reduced rates, then it ceases to have reliable meaning for lawyers and their clients. So for Access Pro Bono and other pro bono organizations across B.C., it has always been pro bono or “no bono” – the operative definition has been kept pure as the driven snow. Though rooted in the best of intentions, the pure definition of pro bono places a hefty price on access to justice for many people. The provision of organized pro bono legal services in B.C. is limited to low-income people who do not qualify for legal aid. A very large percentage of middle-income people are left wanting because they exceed the income threshold for pro bono legal service, and yet cannot afford to hire lawyers at market rates. They are the for-
saken grey middle in a black and white world. Thankfully, a litigation service project designed by B.C. Supreme Court Justice Mark McEwan and McCarthy Tétrault’s Morgan Camley has introduced some nuance – some unlimited shades of grey – to the volunteer legal service delivery game in Vancouver. A so-called “low bono” project and the first project of its kind in Canada, the Commercial Trial Assistance Project engages several large Vancouver law firms in providing pro bono legal consultations and subsequent reduced-rate legal representation at trial to middle-income commercial litigants.
They are the forsaken grey middle in a black and white world. The law firms participating in the Project are Blakes, Borden Ladner Gervais, Bull Housser, Farris, Fasken Martineau, Gowlings, Hunter Litigation Chambers, Lawson Lundell, McCarthy Tétrault and McMillan. Each firm has signed on to provide affordable legal services to otherwise
self-representing commercial litigants, but also to provide valuable trial advocacy experience to junior lawyers who often wait several years before running their own superior court trial. To be eligible for reduced-rate representation under the Project, commercial litigants must be: 1. scheduled for a B.C. Supreme Court trial set for no more than five days in or near Vancouver within four months (excluding trials directly related to family, criminal, motor vehicle and estate matters); 2. referred to the Project by a judge presiding over a Case Planning Conference or a Trial Management Conference; 3. unable to afford prevailing market rates for legal representation at trial; and 4. prepared to pay for legal representation at a cost proportionate to their ability to pay and to the amount at stake at trial. Once referred to the Project by a judge, each litigant is guaranteed a one-hour pro bono consultation with a lawyer from a participating law firm, as facilitated by Access Pro Bono. The pro bono consultation may then lead to a retainer for legal representation at a rate tailored to the litigant’s particular financial circumstances. So more litigants receive more affordable legal services, and B.C. takes one small step closer to a world of Technicolor where quality legal services are accessible to all. Jamie Maclaren, Barrister & Solicitor and Executive Director, Access Pro Bono Society of British Columbia. OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 15
feature CHRISTINE MURRAY
The “Pros” of Pro Bono Pro bono policies of four B.C. law firms
ver the summer month, two questions were asked of lawyers in British Columbia. Below are excerpts from answers given by Brent Olthuis of Hunter Litigation Chambers, Angus M. Gunn, Jr. of Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG), Roy Millen of Blakes, Cassels & Graydon LLP (Blakes) and David Ibbetson, Browne Associates. WHAT IS YOUR FIRM’S PRO BONO POLICY? OLTHUIS: In 2010, our firm became the first Canadian signatory of the Pro Bono Declaration for the Americas, which commits us to providing an average of more than 20 hours of legal services, per lawyer per year, for indigent or underprivileged persons and communities. Given our size, that’s essentially 400 to 450 hours a year. The firm tracks hours spent on pro bono matters in order to measure this commitment. I understand that we generally far exceed those numbers. GUNN: BLG’s pro bono efforts concentrate on disadvantaged or marginalized people who cannot afford legal services, charitable organizations working for such people, and work for the public good on matters of broad public or community concern. BLG’s pro bono policy applies in respect of work that, except for the nature of the client, would otherwise be billed by the firm. All time spent on an approved pro
16 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
bono file is included with the lawyer’s billable hours and is treated as if they were billable hours for compensation purposes. MILLEN: In general terms, we encourage partners, associates and students to do pro bono work, and take on a significant number of pro bono matters every year, in all of our offices. Blakes has a national committee to review and proactively seek out pro bono opportunities. IBBETSON: Our firm does not have a formal pro bono policy. Individual lawyers helping individual clients as they see fit. That assistances ranges from charging such clients no fees, nominal fees, or half or less of regular fees. In many instances the value of this assistance is substantial. We have great satisfaction assisting clients in certain matters, where they cannot afford our services. Most clients are very grateful for the assistance we give them. HOW DO YOU ENCOURAGE YOUNGER ASSOCIATES TO BECOME INVOLVED IN PRO BONO PROJECTS? OLTHUIS: We don’t really find it necessary to offer any specific encouragement. The leadership of the firm’s senior counsel and senior associates, I think, sends a message
to the younger lawyers that their pro bono efforts will be supported, and this appears to be as much of an encouragement as is required. We have a great stable of younger lawyers who are eager to provide services to underprivileged persons and/or to assist on pro bono files of the more senior lawyers. GUNN: BLG fosters a pro bono culture at all levels of seniority within the firm. Younger associates are encouraged to become involved with more senior colleagues on pro bono matters, and are often able to take the lead as counsel when the matter proceeds to hearing. They are also encouraged to volunteer at pro bono clinics and take on pro bono cases of their own. MILLEN: We actively encourage younger lawyers to bring forward and get involved in pro bono work, through various mechanisms. First, we provide associates credit toward their annual billable hours target for up to 150 hours per year on approved pro bono matters, or more in special cases. Second, we have a generous policy in terms of approving pro bono matters. As long as it is legal work for a deserving individual or organization, that does not conflict with our existing client base, we typically approve it. Third, we actively seek out appropriate pro bono opportunities and promote them to our associates, and give them significant file leadership. Pro bono work is valued and recognized at Blakes. Family Lawyer Christine practises at Hart Legal.
The Law Society of BC and the Canadian Bar Association BC Branch warmly invite lawyers and judges to attend the 28th Annual Dinner for the Bench and Bar.
Bench & Bar Date: Thursday, November 8, 2012 Time : 5:45 pm Reception (cash bar) | 6:30 pm Dinner Place: Vancouver Convention Centre | Summit Room, Level 3 1055 Canada Place, Vancouver Dress: Business attire Tickets: $100 (individual) | $760 (table of eight)
Join the Law Society Benchers
ORDER EARLY – TICKET ORDER DEADLINE IS OCTOBER 25, 2012
and CBABC Executive and
Provincial Council in paying
Postal Code _______________________
Dietary Restrictions ________________
Method of Payment
sentations of the Law Society
___ Ticket @ $100 ___________
Award to Marvin Storrow, QC
___ Table @ $760 ____________
and the CBABC Georges A.
Goyer, QC Memorial Award
homage to those who have made outstanding contributions to the cause of justice in BC. The Dinner will feature pre-
for Distinguished Service (to be announced in October).
(please make payable to CBABC)
Credit card # ________________________ Expiry date _________________________ Signature __________________________ Mail, email or fax (fax orders require payment by credit card): Canadian Bar Association, BC Branch - Attention: Events 10th Floor – 845 Cambie St. Vancouver, BC V6B 5T3 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Tel: 604.646.7855 | Fax: 604.669.9601
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 17
news&events CBA NATIONAL NEWS
Robert Brun, QC Takes Over as CBA President
Alberta Premier Alison Redford accepts a gift from outgoing CBA President Trinda Ernst, QC at the Canadian Legal Conference. CBA NATIONAL NEWS
CBA Wraps Up Another Canadian Legal Conference Delegates at this year’s Canadian Legal Conference (CLC) that took place August 12-14 in Vancouver were treated to an array of speakers from the business, political and legal worlds, ranging from Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales to Alberta Premier Alison Redford, The Right Honourable Madam Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin and The Honourable Justice Minister Rob Nicholson. Conference attendees also enjoyed great networking events,
18 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
informative professional development sessions on subjects ranging from social media in the courts to getting the most out of meetings, and a concert with legendary rocker Randy Bachman. If you couldn’t make it to Vancouver, or are looking to relive your conference experience, you can read about the conference at the CLC blog at clc-post.org, and peruse photos on Facebook (www.facebook.com/canadianbarassociation).
Robert Brun, QC became the CBA’s 85th National President during a ceremony at the Canadian Legal Conference on August 14. Brun, a Vancouver-based civil litigator, has identified the independence of the Bar, access to justice, and leadership as priorities for his year-long term. Since joining the CBA as a UBC law student in 1974, he has been an active member at both the National and Branch levels. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2004.
Robert Brun, QC addresses CBA members during the Canadian Legal Conference.
CBA NATIONAL NEWS
New Initiatives on Access, Practice and Inclusion Launched at CLC Melina Buckley, Chair of the CBA National Access to Justice Committee, addresses CBA National Council.
A trio of initiatives collectively titled “Envisioning Justice: Access, Practice and Inclusion” were launched by the CBA at the CLC in Vancouver. The initiatives on access to justice, the future of legal practice, and diversity in law firms get to the heart of what the CBA is all about, says immediate Past President Trinda L. Ernst, QC. “These projects centre on a vision for justice and how that can be achieved, and will enhance our Association’s offering both to members and the public.” For more information on the \\
initiatives, visit: http://j.mp/threeCBAinitiatives
Section News Earlybird Winners Announced Congratulations to Karl Gustafson, QC, Lana Shipley and Zool Suleman on winning a complimentary twohour PD Webinar from the B.C. Branch in our Section Enrolment Earlybird draw. To enroll: \\ www.cba.org/bc/PD/main/section_enrolment.aspx
Thank You for Your Feedback Thank you to everyone who participated in the recent Sections Webinar Survey. Congratulations to Justyna Jakeman on winning our Survey Draw! To share your \\
thoughts on Section Webinars, please go to: www.surveymonkey.com/ s/VCK3LQB
CBA NATIONAL NEWS
Resolution for New Membership Fee Structure Passed by National Council
CBA National Council debated 14 resolutions at this year’s meeting in Vancouver, including a
resolution to change the membership fee structure of the CBA, which passed with no dissenting debate. In a letter to members, CBA immediate Past President Trinda L. Ernst, QC, noted that the resolution’s adoption takes the fee structure “from a static,
one-size-fits-all approach based on year of call... to a philosophy of choice and value.” Some changes to membership fees will take place beginning in September 2012, with full implementation taking place in September 2013. Details of what the new fee structure will mean for members will be provided in the coming months.
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 19
news&events Lawyers with Pride Photo credit: Allison Suter Photography
Canada’s first-ever legal parade float made a colourful splash at the 34th Annual Vancouver Pride Parade on August 5. Accompanied by almost 80 lawyers, judges, law students and sponsors, the “Lawyers with Pride” float made its way down the parade route to cheers from thousands of spectators.
CLEBC Update INDIGENOUS LEGAL ORDERS AND THE COMMON LAW On November 15 and 16, 2012, CLEBC will host a historic conference respecting Aboriginal people, which will appeal to everyone interested in building partnerships in Canadian society. The full title of the conference is “Indigenous Legal Orders and the Common Law: Weaving the ‘Golden Thread of Continuity’ into the Legal Landscape.” Featured keynote speakers will include The Right Honourable
20 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
Chief Justice of Canada Beverley McLachlin, PC; The Honourable Chief Justice of British Columbia Lance Finch; Professor John Borrows of the Faculty of Law, University of Victoria; His Honour Steven Point, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, and Professor Sakej Youngblood Henderson, Research Director at the Native Law Centre of Canada. Before European colonialism, Indigenous peoples maintained their own systems of law. In the wake of colonialism, these systems were mostly overruled or ignored by non-Indigenous laws. Today, however, Indigenous legal traditions are being reconciled
with non-Indigenous traditions. The conference will explore what it means to establish a more pluralistic approach to legal problemsolving in Canada. Conference participants will be invited to join in a conversation, both theoretical and practical, about how Indigenous legal traditions and the common law might co-exist. M. Louise Mandell, QC and Ardith A. Walkem are Co-Chairing the Conference. For further information about the program, visit the CLEBC website at www. cle.bc.ca or contact CLEBC customer service at 604-893-2121.
B.C. LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
ACTS IN FORCE Current from July 4 to August 14, 2012
Legislative Update is provided as part of the CBABC legislative and law reform program. It is a service funded by CBA membership fees, and is, therefore, provided as a benefit of CBA membership. The full version of Legislative Update is now only published online and available to CBA members exclusively at www.cba.org/bc. BUDGET MEASURES IMPLEMENTATION ACT, 2012, S.B.C. 2012, C. 8 (BILL 21) Sections 84 and 85 are in force July 19, 2012 FINANCE STATUTES AMENDMENT ACT, 2011, S.B.C. 2011, C. 29 (BILL 17) Sections 1 to 62, 64 to 81, 83 to 85, 87 to 118, 143 to 146 and 148 are in force November 1, 2012 FINANCE STATUTES AMENDMENT ACT, 2012, S.B.C. 2012, C. 12 (BILL 23) Sections 73 to 75 are in force November 1, 2012 MISCELLANEOUS STATUTES AMENDMENT ACT, 2006, S.B.C. 2006, C. 15 (BILL 15) Section 33(a) is in force July 19, 2012 MISCELLANEOUS STATUTES AMENDMENT ACT (NO. 3), 2010, S.B.C. 2010, C. 21 (BILL 20) Section 118 is in force July 23, 2012 MISCELLANEOUS STATUTES AMENDMENT ACT (NO. 2), 2011, S.B.C. 2011, C. 13 (BILL 13) Sections 63 and 94(b) are in force July 13, 2012. Sections 108 to 124 are in force November 30, 2012 POLICE (INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATIONS OFFICE) AMENDMENT ACT, 2011, S.B.C. 2011, C. 8 (BILL 12) Section 8, insofar as it enacts sections 38.09 and 38.10 of the Police Act, and sections 12(a), 17 and 19 are in force September 10, 2012 PROTECTED AREAS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AMENDMENT ACT, 2010, S.B.C. 2010, C. 13 (BILL 15) Section 5 b) is in force July 19, 2012
BRANCH & BAR
5 LAP: Refirement! – Energizing the best part of your life!
NOVEMBER 23-25 CBABC Seventh Annual Branch Conference in San Francisco (see below)
More of Lawyers with Pride Photo credit: Allison Suter Photography
UPCOMING EVENT REMINDER
CBABC Seventh Annual Branch Conference San Francisco, California
Have you registered for the upcoming CBABC Branch Conference in San Francisco, November 23-25? Don’t miss out on a great weekend to earn all your 12 hours of required CPD, learn from amazing speakers and network! Visit the CBABC website for registration, hotel and flight discounts: www.cbabc-conference.org.
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 21
news&events PRACTICE TIP FOR THE FAMILY LAWYER IN PROVINCIAL COURT: Counsel of Record Practice tip: To become counsel of record, a lawyer must file a Notice of Change of Address form and serve it on the opposing party or parties in addition to any statement made to the court during a hearing. Failure to do so could result in an order being made in your absence because either the court or the parties did not know how to notify you of a hearing. In Provincial Court, a change in counsel constitutes a change in address. The form to use: Form 11 (Notice of Change of Address) found at: www.ag.gov.bc.ca/ courts/forms/pfa/pfa053.pdf The rule to follow: “If a party’s address for service changes, the party must promptly file with the registry a notice of change of address in Form 11 and serve a copy of the notice on the other parties.” – Rule 9(5) of the Provincial Court (Family) Rules Ministry of Justice, Court Services Branch
Courthouse Libraries BC’s Reading Room: An Online Library for Lawyers Courthouse Libraries BC reminds members of the Law Society of B.C. that they have unprecedented, free access to an impressive array of online Canadian legal textbooks, law journals and periodicals, including The Advocate and its entire back catalog since 1943, even when they’re nowhere near a library. The Reading Room, www.courthouselibrary.ca/ ReadingRoom, is a free digital resource for B.C. lawyers and articling students boasting nearly 150 Irwin Law e-books and 1,500 law journals through HeinOnline. Anywhere they have an Internet connection, users can read full-text books and commentary, and download and print excerpts of books or entire journal articles. To date, more than 500 B.C. lawyers and articling students have signed up for this free service from Courthouse Libraries BC.
PRO BONO STORY
Christina J. Cook on Pro Bono: It Can Take Less Time Than a CFL Game “I was surprised when I found myself volunteering at Access Pro Bono. I didn’t think I had the time. Then I spoke to Frank Yates at Access Pro Bono. He said that their volunteers at summary advice clinics volunteer two hours every four to six weeks. I was very surprised – how could such a small amount of time really help people? So I tried it. My first client was an older, heavyset gentleman – he looked like someone’s grandfather. His laugh lines told me he was probably quick to laugh and I imagined he had a boisterous Santa Clause type laugh, but he
22 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
wore a worried expression. He was here to talk to me about his CPP. He began by telling me that after getting a Grade 4 education he worked for more than thirty years in construction. He was proud of his work history. Then he pulled a small stack of papers out of a plastic Safeway bag. The papers were dog-eared and out of order. He looked at me meekly and asked nervously what was happening with his CPP. I went through the documents and found the issue to be easy to remedy. When I explained it to him, he breathed deeply and sat back in his chair for the first time
during our meeting. He was so relieved and grateful for my help. Since my first meeting, I have helped other people by simply explaining quasi-legal documents. Often the people that come to see me at the clinic just do not have the reading comprehension to understand such documents. Some clients do have more challenging issues, but there are times where simply explaining a letter helps people. It turns out, it can take just a few minutes to help.”
announcements LAW FOUNDATION OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
2013 SMALL PROJECTS INITIATIVE
Law Foundation of British Columbia Graduate Fellowships 2013/2014
(for grants up to $15,000)
VALUE: Up to five (5) Awards of $13,750 each. (subject to change)
Please check the Law Foundation website in late September 2012 for the 2013 Small Projects Funding Notice and information about changes in the grant application process. Applications will be due in mid-December 2012. Funding decisions will continue to be made in March 2013.
CLOSING DATE: All applications and supporting material must be received at the Law Foundation offices by January 4, 2013. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered. Applications may be submitted by mail, courier or fax, but not electronically.
JAY CHALKE, QC The Attorney Generalâ€™s designate to the Law Foundation of B.C. Board of Governors is Jay Chalke, QC (Assistant Deputy Minister, Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General). Mr. Chalke has previously been the Public Guardian and Trustee for B.C. His background includes positions such as Deputy Public Guardian and Trustee in Ontario, and head of a review of New Brunswick Correctional Institutions. Mr. Chalke is a graduate of the University of Ottawa Law School, and was appointed Queenâ€™s Counsel in December 2006.
FIELD OF STUDY: Full-time graduate studies in law or a law-related area. Please note that the pursuit of a Juris Doctor (JD), as a first law degree, does not constitute graduate studies for the purposes of the Law Foundation Graduate Fellowships. WHERE TENABLE: Recognized universities in Canada, the U.S. or abroad. NOTE: The Law Foundation Graduate Fellowship is not available for the graduate programs of the Faculties of Law at the University of British Columbia and the University of Victoria as the Law Foundation makes separate grants to the Graduate Fellowship programs at these universities. ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must either be residents of British Columbia; graduates of a British Columbia law school; or members of the British Columbia Bar. In order to be eligible, applicants must devote themselves primarily to their full-time graduate studies in law or a law-related area. Please note that a person who is a current recipient of a Legal Research Fund grant from the Foundation is ineligible to receive a Graduate Fellowship. APPLICATIONS: Application forms and further information may be obtained from the Law Foundation (1340 - 605 Robson Street, Vancouver, B.C. V6B 5J3 / Phone 604-688-4418), or by contacting us via the LFBC website at www.lawfoundationbc.org.
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 23
professionaldevelopment EMAIL: PD@BCCBA.ORG
WEBSITE: CBA.ORG/PD \\
CBABC courses are designed to meet the needs of lawyers while still maintaining the opportunity to network, advance one’s career, practice and business. CBABC prides itself in bringing courses to lawyers that will provide the required professional responsibility and ethics, client care and relations, and practice management component for 2012 Law Society of British Columbia reporting.
Upcoming Programs CBABC BRANCH WEBINARS (WITH IN-PERSON OPTION) Mental Capacity Date: October 24, 2012 Speakers: Andrew S. MacKay, Alexander Holburn Beaudin + Lang LLP; Margaret Ostrowski, QC, Mental Health Review Board; and Jane A. Purdie, QC, Hambrook & Company Moderator: Stuart Rennie, Legislation and Law Reform Officer, CBABC In-Person Location: Vancouver
Business of Law Webinar Series October 17, 2012: Business Skills for Legal Practice November 14, 2012: The Expanding Role of Assistants: An Introduction to the New Law Society Rules
December 6, 2012: Managing the Risks and Benefits of Technology in the Practice of Law January 10, 2013 – Managing Client Relationships February 7, 2013 – Negotiating Results in Legal Practice March 7, 2013 – Project Management Part 1: Principles of Project Management April 11, 2013 – Project Management Part 2: Project Management in Practice
In-Person Seminars IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE The Impact of Telezone on Federal Administrative Practice Date: October 18, 2012 Speakers: The Honourable Robert Décary, QC; Nicholas McHaffie, Stikeman Elliott LLP (Ottawa);
and Christopher Rupar, counsel who argued Telezone at the SCC Location: Law Courts Inn, Vancouver
IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE VICTORIA BAR ASSOCIATION Succession Planning Date: October 30, 2012 Speakers: Kathryn A. Berge, QC, HART Legal and Sherelle Goodwin, Law Society of B.C. Location: Union Club, Victoria
Dealing with Self-Represented Litigants – Practical Tips Date: November 30, 2012 Speakers: Master Carolyn P. Bouck, Supreme Court of British Columbia; Andrea Brownstone, Law Society of B.C.; and Eugene Raponi, QC, Waddell Raponi Location: Marriott Inner Harbour, Victoria
\\ For a complete list of registration details and requirements, please contact the Professional Development
Department 604-646-7866 or 1-888-687-3404 ext. 329 or email email@example.com.
Seasonal promotions and special offers to members are promoted weekly via CBABC News and Jobs. Visit the CBABC website for links to various activities and promotions on the Member Savings page from the drop down list under Membership. B.C. LIONS Football Club Exclusive – All CBABC members save $10 per ticket on regular seating. Club \\ Orange Lounge pricing features dinner and a game with panoramic views of the stadium. Visit the Member Savings page for details. BCLMA/CBABC Support Staff Compensation and Charge-Out Rates Surveys 2012. Results will be \\
available at the end of October. Stay competitive and know your market!
24 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
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OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 25
barmoves Whoâ€™s Moving Where and When Suzan El-Khatib
has joined the Vancouver firm Wiebe Douvelos Wittmann LLP as partner. Her practice focuses on corporate governance, commercial litigation, tenancy, construction and family law matters.
has joined Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP as a partner. Lara focuses her practice on commercial litigation, securities litigation, class actions and insolvency litigation and advice.
joins Branch MacMaster LLP as an associate practising in the areas of class actions and insurance litigation. Previously, Ahmad practised litigation at Alexander Holburn and the class action boutique of Kim Orr in Toronto.
has joined the Vancouver office of Spectrum HR Law LLP. His practice will focus on business immigration.
Craig E. Jones, QC
has joined the College of Dental Surgeons of B.C. as Registrar and Chief Executive Officer. CDSBC regulates dentists and certified dental assistants in the public interest.
joins Branch MacMaster LLP as associate counsel in the areas of class actions and public law. Previously, Craig practised constitutional litigation for several years with the B.C. Ministry of Justice.
has joined Harris & Company LLP. Harris is pleased to offer their clients an expanding pension and benefits practice with the addition of Claude, a senior pension and benefits lawyer with 25 years of experience.
has joined McCullough Oâ€™Connor Irwin LLP as an associate and is practising corporate and securities law.
Mike Raven and R. James Beadle
has joined Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP as a partner. Wendy practises commercial litigation with an emphasis on securities class actions and securities-related and regulatory issues.
announced that they have formed Beadle Raven, Business and Securities Lawyers in downtown Vancouver, British Columbia, effective July 1, 2012.
26 BARTALK / OCTOBER 2012
SPACE IS AT A PREMIUM AND AVAILABLE ON A FIRST-COME FIRST-SERVED BASIS SO SEND YOUR BAR MOVE (MAX. 30 WORDS) AND PHOTO TO CBA@BCCBA.ORG NOW. FOR MORE BAR MOVES GO TO BARTALK ONLINE
James L. Harris has joined McCullough O’Connor Irwin LLP as counsel and is practising corporate and securities law.
newmembers July & August 2012 Associate Member
Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP Vancouver
Regular Member Esther O. Bergh
Cameron G. Funnell has joined Oyen Wiggs Green & Mutala LLP as an associate, and will focus on assisting clients with protecting their intellectual property.
Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP Vancouver
Wiebe Douvelos Wittmann LLP have moved to Suite 1380 - 885 West Georgia St., Vancouver. They have acquired an additional 4500 sq. ft. of office space to accommodate their growth and expansion plans and they encourage everyone to come by for a tour.
Lawson Lundell LLP Vancouver
Articling Students Jeremie D. Beitel
Thorsteinssons LLP Vancouver
Enoch H. Chang
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP Vancouver
Davis LLP Vancouver
has joined Harris & Company, Western Canada’s largest management-side employment and labour law firm, as an associate. Mark works with a broad range of employers in the public and private sector.
Michelle E. Chang
Mogan Daniels Slager LLP Vancouver
Jiwa Law Corporation Vancouver
Nash & Company Vancouver
David R. K. Carstairs-Weir
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP Vancouver Tiffany C. Chung
Andrew D. Jackman
Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP Vancouver
Krystin P. Kempton
Jeffrey L. Hartman
Coast Capital Savings Surrey Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP Vancouver
Stevenson Luchies & Legh Victoria
Krista A. Lidstone
Linley Welwood LLP Abbotsford
Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP Vancouver
Shawn A. Johnston
Valerie L. Osborne
Matthew Louis Kalkman
Shields Harney Victoria College of Chiropractors of British Columbia Richmond Stephen R. Sharpless
Bull, Housser & Tupper LLP Vancouver Mathieu Lorne Stanton Heenan Blaikie LLP Vancouver Krystal C. Tan
Nick D. Van Dalfsen
Miller Thomson LLP Vancouver Karenna Lynn Williams
Peter Grant & Associates Vancouver
Andrew M. Hennigar
Harris & Company LLP Vancouver McQuarrie Hunter LLP Abbotsford Aleksandra Ola Karpik
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP Vancouver Zheng Li
Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP West Vancouver To view all new \\
members, including Law Students, please visit www.cba.org/bc/
OCTOBER 2012 / BARTALK 27
DI F F E R E N T
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