B Livesey: Discipline Dichotomy

Written by Bruce Livesey

Posted on the Canadian Lawyer website, from the January 2013 issue. For the Canadian Lawyer website, click HERE.

Few recent legal scandals have generated as much Sturm und Drang as the one caused by Winnipeg lawyer Jack King. Years ago, he tried to coerce a client into having sex with his wife, Lori Douglas, today an associate chief justice in Manitoba. This past summer, the salacious details of King’s actions were exposed during a Canadian Judicial Council hearing set up to determine whether Douglas should remain on the bench. Continue reading

The Canadian Judicial Council to review the conduct of the Honourable Michel Girouard

Press release from the Canadian Judicial Council website.  For the CJC website, click HERE.

Ottawa, 8 January 2013 – The Canadian Judicial Council has confirmed that the Honorable François Rolland, Chief Justice of the Quebec Superior Court has requested that a review of the conduct of the Honourable Michel Girouard of the Quebec Superior Court be undertaken.  The review  concerns his conduct prior to his appointment to the Bench and includes an allegation that the judge would have participated in a transaction to purchase an illicit substance from a police informant.  This is only an allegation: no facts have been established in this matter.

As part of the review, all relevant information will be carefully considered by the Vice-chairperson of the Judicial Conduct Committee of Council. The judge will have a full opportunity to make representations about the allegations.

Since making this request to Council, the judge’s Chief Justice has not assigned any new work to Justice Girouard.

Council takes the review of all complaints seriously and deals with every complaint in accordance with its Complaints Procedures.  Information about the Council, including its Complaints Procedures, can be found on the Council’s website at www.cjc-ccm.gc.ca.

The Future of Zealous Advocacy in Canada

The panel discussion titled “Does Zealous Advocacy have a Future in Canada?” is available here:


George J. Karayannides
Heenan Blaikie
The Honourable Ian Binnie, C.C., Q.C. 
Former Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
Edward L. Greenspan, Q.C., L.L.D., D.C.L.
Senior Partner, Greenspan Partners
Thomas G. Heintzman, O.C., Q.C.
Counsel, McCarthy Tétrault
Alice Woolley
Professor of Law and Director of Admissions,
University of Calgary
Author, Understanding Lawyers’ Ethics in Canada
Co-author & Co-editor, Lawyers’ Ethics and Professional Regulation, 2nd ed.


A Dodek: Top Issues for the Canadian Legal Profession for 2013

Via SLAW – for the website, click HERE

Posted by Adam Dodek, January 4

In the spirit of the New Year, Resolutions and Top 10 lists, I present to you my predictions for the top issues that the legal profession in Canada will face in 2013. This was inspired by a discussion on the listserv of the Canadian Association for Legal Ethics (CALE) and in particular by contributions fromAlice Woolley who started things off with a “Best of 2012” post that you can find hereMalcolm Mercer, Tom Harrison, and Richard Devlin, as always, expanded and enriched the discussion. Some of my “Top Issues for 2013” repeat Alice’s Top Issues in 2012 but I think that is the nature of our slow-to-change profession.

So here is my “homage to David Letterman” and the Top 10 Issues for the Canadian Legal Profession in 2013:

10. The continuing battle over conflicts of interest

The SCC’s conflicts trilogy will become a quadrilogy (?) (or a tetralogy?) with McKercher being heard by the SCC on January 24, 2013. Elsewhere, I have written about the battle over conflicts of interest between the CBA and theFederation of Law Societies of Canada (FLSC) Continue reading

A Woolley: Top Ten Canadian Legal Ethics Stories – 2012

Via ABLawg – for the website, click HERE.

Posted on January 3, 2013 by Alice Woolley

At the blog Legal Ethics Forum John Steele recently published a list of the top ten legal ethics stories in America in 2012 (here). With contributions from Adam Dodek (University of Ottawa), Malcolm Mercer (McCarthy Tetrault), Richard Devlin (Dalhousie), and other members of the Canadian Legal Ethics Listserv, here is my articulation of a Canadian edition:

The Top Ten

1. The Law Society of Upper Canada’s modification of the articling requirement to allow, at least on a test basis, some people to become members of the bar through alternative forms of training.

The link to the LSUC website on the Articling Task Force is here. Former Law Society of Upper Canada Treasurer Gavin Mackenzie’s critique of the change is discussed here. An article on the final vote of the Law Society is here. The irony of this is that one of the items in John Steele’s list (at point 5, in the discussion of changes in general education) is about initiatives by the bars of New York and California to increase practical training requirements – in the form of a pro bono requirement in New York and in the form of striking a commission on practical training in California. Will the public in Ontario be well served by this change? Will the profession be improved in the long run? There was clearly a gap between the number of qualified people seeking articling positions and the number of positions available in Ontario, a gap that also exists elsewhere in Canada. Articling had become a barrier to entry to the profession that was hard to justify as a matter of principle or of sound public policy. But whether this solution to that gap represents regulation of the profession in the public interest remains to be seen. Continue reading

CALE: Year in Review

To the CALE Listserv

As the creator and the host of the Canadian Legal Ethics listserv, it is my pleasure to provide this year end report to the 75 of you who are members of this listserv. How did this happen?

The listserv was founded at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law in October 2010 after the 5th meeting of the group variously known as the Canadian Legal Ethics teachers network and other names. Since we don’t have much in the way of competition, there is much risk in our using many names. Let me thank my Law School, the University of Ottawa, for hosting the listserv.

At that meeting in October, we also decided to formally create an organization – the Canadian Association for Legal Ethics (CALE) who had its founding corporate meeting at ILEC 5 in Banff in July 2012. The CALE website can be found at https://ethicsincanada.com/ and is run by Chantal Morton an expatriate Canadian legal ethics teacher now teaching in Melbourne. If you would like to post information on the CALE website please e-mail Chantal at CAlegalethics – at – gmail.com. Chantal often posts articles that people post on this listserv to our public CALE website.

Continue reading