“Peremptory challenges, by enabling each side to exclude those jurors it believes will be most partial toward the other side, are a means of eliminat[ing] extremes of partiality on both sides… assuring the selection of a qualified and unbiased jury.” – Justice Scalia in Holland v Illinois. On October 7, 2020, the Supreme Court of Canada … Continue reading Do Peremptory Challenges Help Make a Jury More Impartial?
Internet trolls are pervasive. Their comments can be found on websites, Apps (like Instagram), and online groups. “Once a message enters cyberspace, millions of people worldwide can gain access to it. Even if the message is posted in a discussion forum frequented by only a handful of people, any one of them can republish the … Continue reading Should We Clean Up Bad Speech With Artificial Intelligence Before It Happens?
“A litigation culture has arisen in this province over the last three decades which extols creating and litigating peripheral procedural disputes, instead of moving towards the timely adjudication of disputes on their merits. That culture now lauds, as the skilled barrister, the motions specialist, not the final hearing expert.” – Justice David M. Brown Given the … Continue reading New Culture Shift Towards Scheduling Court Motions in Ontario
Recently, the Ontario government has made large strides in introducing CaseLines and the Court Case Search Portal. CaseLines operates in conjuction with existing conference tools, like Zoom. It is a document sharing platform. CaseLines is not an e-filing system. It is a platform that will require parties to upload documents in advance of a hearing. At this time, … Continue reading Details on CaseLines – New Ontario Electronic Court System
The Ontario government is considering granting immunity from civil lawsuits related to COVID-19. Other jurisdictions have already done so to varying degrees. In New York, Governor Cuomo signed legislation immunizing health care providers for medical decisions that they make in the course of treating victims of the pandemic. (Reported in the New York Times.) Similarly, in British … Continue reading Should the Government Grant Immunity From Civil Lawsuits Related to COVID-19?
In 4352238 Canada Inc. v. SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., 2020 ONCA 303, the Ontario Court of Appeal heard arguments on whether an appeal should be heard in writing only. Deviating from the usual mode of oral and written submissions. The appellant objected to the matter being heard only in writing. Despite the objection, the court held that … Continue reading Ontario Court of Appeal Hearing Some Appeals in Writing
During the OBA Law Practice Management Section series we discussed Virtual identification of client identity: What tools are you using?. You are required to identify your client when you provide legal advice. Identifying the client means obtaining certain basic information about your client and any third party instructing you. This information includes items like the … Continue reading Virtual Identification, Verification, and Witnessing of Clients During COVID-19
Governments in Canada have yet to officially use phone data to track and trace people who may be infected with COVID-19. However, there has been discussion around using a system in Canada similar to Singapore. In Singapore, the app being used to track and trace people who may have contracted COVID-19 is “TraceTogether”. TraceTogether uses … Continue reading Using Apps for Contact Tracing: Can We Protect Privacy?
This post is from an interview with lawyer Heather Hui-Litwin, co-founder of Self-Rep Navigators. It is posted on Self-Rep Navigators website. Courts in Ontario have implemented changes to accommodate the rapidly evolving Covid-19 situation. Lawyer Heather S. Douglas explains to Heather Hui-Litwin (Self-Rep Navigator Co-founder) what these changes are. QUESTION 1: What is the current … Continue reading Changes in Court Process due to COVID-19 Social Distancing
Jury duty is an obligation dreaded by some and evaded by others. Medical reasons, familial obligations, travel plans, and the loss of an income are some of excuses used to avoid jury duty. Recently, Justice Robert Goldstein of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto wrote to Canadian Tire about their policy on paying … Continue reading Should Judges Confront Big Companies for Failing to Pay Jurors for Time Off Work?