New Scholarship:The Attorney General’s Forgotten Role as Legal Advisor to the Legislature: A Comment on Schmidt v Canada (Attorney General)

CALE member Andrew Martin has a new article up on SSRN (published in UBC Law Review).

Here is the abstract:

In Schmidt v Canada (Attorney General), the Federal Court of Appeal interpreted a series of provisions requiring the Minister of Justice to inform the House of Commons if government bills or proposed regulations are “inconsistent with” the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms or the Canadian Bill of Rights. The Federal Court of Appeal, like the Federal Court below, held that these provisions are triggered only where there is no credible argument for consistency. In doing so, both Courts relied, in part, on a separation of powers argument. They stated that the Minister of Justice and Attorney General is not a legal advisor to Parliament. However, this statement was a legal error: federal legislation provides that the Attorney General is, as a matter of law, a legal advisor to Parliament.

New Scholarship: Advocacy in Non-Adversarial Family Law: A Recommendation for Revision to the Model Code

New scholarship from CALE member Deanne Sowter now up on SSRN!

Link here.

Abstract:

Family law is evolving towards non-adversarial dispute resolution processes. As a result, some family lawyers are representing clients who are trying to reach settlements that recognize their interests, instead of just pursuing their legal rights. By responding to the full spectrum of client needs, lawyers are required to behave differently than they do when they are representing a client in a traditional civil litigation file. They consider the emotional and financial consequences of relationship breakdown – things that are not typically within the purview of the family law lawyer. They objectively reality check with their client, and they approach interest-based negotiations in a client-centric way. These lawyers view their role as that of a non-adversarial advocate, and their client as a whole person with interests that are not just legal. This paper draws on an empirical study involving focus groups with family law lawyers, to argue that the Federation of Law Societies of Canada, Model Code of Professional Conduct, needs to be updated to incorporate non-adversarial advocacy. The lawyers in the study viewed non-adversarial advocacy as being responsive to client needs, and in the interest of the client’s children. This paper draws from the study to establish what constitutes non-adversarial advocacy and then it presents a proposal for revising Rule 5 (Advocacy) of the Model Code.

Update on CALE Awards

In 2017 CALE created two awards: a Best Paper Award and a Lifetime Achievement Award.  Nominations will be sought for these awards each year, commencing in the spring, and the awards will normally be announced at the annual meeting of members in the fall.  In 2018 the selection committee determined that neither award would be made that year.

For 2019 the selection committee is Pooja Parmer, Darrel Pink and Stephen Pitel.  CALE expects to call for nominations in early May 2019.

Wickwire Lecture at Schulich School of Law

On January 31, 2019, David Layton QC will deliver the F.B. Wickwire Memorial Lecture on the topic of “Criminal Lawyers, Hired Guns & Junkyard Dogs”, looking at the ethics of being a criminal defence lawyer. 

The lecture is at 4:30pm in room 105 of the Weldon Law Building at Dalhousie Unversity, Halifax.  It is open to the public.

New Director and Officers

Professor Amy Salyzyn of the University of Ottawa is the new President of CALE.  She succeeds Justice Alice Woolley who resigned as President last fall when she was appointed to the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench.

At a meeting of CALE’s board of directors held by phone on January 28, 2019, changes were made to CALE’s directors and officers.  These tend to only happen at the annual meeting of members, but the appointment of Justice Woolley necessitated some mid-year changes.

Justice Alice Woolley having resigned as a director, the board of directors appointed Professor Stephen Pitel (Western) as a director.

Justice Alice Woolley having resigned as President, the board of directors appointed Professor Amy Salyzyn (Ottawa) as President.  This created a vacancy in the position of Vice-President, which the board of directors filled by appointing Professor Stephen Pitel (Western).

The directors also appointed Professor Jasminka Kalajdzic (Windsor) as the Conference Coordinator. 

Dates and Venue for 2019 CALE Annual Conference

The 2019 CALE annual conference will be hosted by the University of Windsor.  It will follow its traditional schedule, starting on the evening of Thursday, October 24 and ending mid-day on Saturday, October 26, 2019.  Professor Jasminka Kalajdzic is the Conference Co-ordinator.  The CALE annual meeting of members will be held at the conference.  Calls for papers will go out in the spring.

CBA-FLSC Ethics Forum 2019

The Forum will be held from 9am to 4:30pm on March 1, 2019 at Osgoode Hall, 130 Queen Street West, Toronto.  The Forum is an annual discussion between lawyers, academics and regulators who are interested in legal ethics and professional services regulation.  Registration information is available here.

This year the Forum will focus on four topics: modernizing legal regulation, current issues in judicial ethics, entrepreneurial ideas for improving access to justice, and obligations to unrepresented and self-represented parties.

Speakers include Chief Justice Robert Bauman, Dean Adam Dodek, Lisa Eisen, Irwin Fefergrad, Gillian Hadfield, Jacqueline Horvat, Lena Koke, Taryn McCormick, Jacqueline Mullenger, Andrew Pilliar, Darrel Pink, Stephen Pitel, Amy Salyzyn, Darcia Senft, Associate Chief Justice Deborah Smith, Justice Lorne Sossin and David Swayze.  The Forum is co-chaired by LSO Treasurer Malcolm Mercer and CALE Vice-President Amy Salyzyn.

CALE 2018 Annual Meeting of Members

On October 27, 2018 CALE held its annual meeting of members at Osgoode Hall Law School at York University, in conjunction with its annual conference.  The meeting elected CALE’s directors and appointed its officers for 2018-19, including appointing Professor Alice Woolley for another term as President.  The current directors and officers are indicated on CALE’s website.

Approved minutes for the 2017 annual meeting of members (and for prior years) are available on CALE’s website.