Your Only Paralegal News Source: SCOPE Aug. 25

Michael Murphy, former N.B. Justice Minister -

Michael Murphy, former N.B. Justice Minister –

Trinity Vote Do-Over in N.B.

New Brunswick’s law society is following in the tracks of its British Columbia counterparts, reconsidering its June decision to accredit a controversial proposed law school.

More than 200 LSNB members signed a petition asking the law society to reconsider, triggering a special meeting. That meeting is scheduled in Fredericton on Sept. 13.

Carley Parish, a criminal defence lawyer and partner at Lutz Longstaff Parish, started the petition after the decision to accredit TWU. Four former justice ministers signed the petition. If the reconsideration motion passes, the society will seek a legal opinion on its effect.

If a school’s protected religious rights infringe on a student’s protected sexual orientation rights, should that school be accredited by an organization whose members are sworn to uphold human rights?
Trinity Western is a Langley, B.C. faith-based post-secondary school “with an underlying philosophy and viewpoint that is Christian,” according to its material. Trinity has its students sign a “community covenant” related to sexual orientation and other behaviour. Students and staff vow to endorse strict interpretations of marriage and permissible sexual expression.

New Licensees: What You Need to Know

So, You Have a Licence. Now What?

Are you a new licensee, planning to “hang up a shingle” and start offering legal services to the public? A paralegal who has been working for others, and feel almost ready to take the plunge and open a sole proprietorship?

If you want to know more about the hands-on business of setting up and running a practice, a new SCOPE CPD will give you the tools and tips you need, to make your dreams a reality. This three-hour CPD is LSUC-accredited for 3.0 Professionalism Hours. So, in addition to gaining useful insight about getting off on the right foot, you will earn your full year’s CPD requirement Professionalism Hours in one Saturday brunch-time.

The first “So, You Have a Licence” program takes place Sat., Sept. 13, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., at Lawfactory’s offices in the Sinclair Building, at Bay and Richmond Streets in downtown Toronto.

If you’re serious about opening a practice, this CPD is right for you! Look for more details soon, at SCOPE – the only source of news, features and information for licensed paralegals.

Resources and SCOPE Articles for New Licensees

Practice resources, from start to finish.
Business Types
Business structures for paralegals.
For Women
Women, Work & Justice – LSUC links.
Ministry of the Attorney General Updates

File Claims From Anywhere! E-Filing Project Demos

The province’s pilot project for e-filing small claims launched Aug. 11.

Paralegals who work in the four jurisdictions where the service is available can sign up for in-person training sessions. Each one-hour session includes an overview of the new small claims court e-filing service and a demonstration of the filing process, including the quick file and filing wizard methods.

Scope of Practice Updates

‘Roving Punishment,’ Victim Surcharge Unconstitutional, Ottawa Judge Finds

Mandatory fine surcharges are unconstitutional, an Ottawa judge has ruled. Ontario Court Justice David Paciocco found that the surcharge amounted to “cruel and unusual punishment” in the case of an addicted homeless Inuit man whom he had convicted of nine summary offences related to three separate “nuisance” incidents.

Judge Paciocco wrote that under a “reasonable hypothetical,” the mandatory victim surcharge would represent a sentence “so grossly disproportionate that it would outrage the standards of decency.” He found that Section 737 prima facie violates Section 12 of the Charter, the violation is not saved by Section 1, and the legislation is of no force or effect.

‘Flexible Sentencing,’ Makes Victim Surcharge Constitutional, Ottawa Judge Finds

An Ottawa judge has ruled the contentious victim fine surcharge constitutional, just days after another judge in the same court found the Criminal Code section violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms section against cruel and unusual punishment.

R. v. Javier, 2014 ONCJ 361 (CanLII) was released Aug. 6. Represented by duty counsel, the defendant asked the Ottawa Ontario Court of Justice last week to waive the mandatory victim surcharge under s. 737 of the Criminal Code.

Justice Robert Wadden found: “In my view, s. 737 of the Code is valid legislation and I am obliged to impose the victim surcharge.”

The Crown has filed a notice of appeal in Ontario’s Superior Court, over Justice David Paciocco’s finding that the victim fine surcharge is not Constitutional.

Justice Paciocco had found in Ottawa Ontario Court of Justice that the surcharge is of no force or effect because it amounted to cruel and unusual punishment in the case of a homeless man convicted of nine minor offences.

  • No helmet exemption for Sikhs – Ontario regulation was upheld R. v. Badesha 2011 ONCJ.
  • Defamation suit and integrity of judicial system.
  • Questions around payout of a Crown attorney after on-the-job harassment claims.
  • Montana man calls police; paid $350 but no “satisfaction.” Police arrest him under john law.
  • Man sentenced to probation for urinating on PM’s office – Calgary Herald
  • Primer on Due Diligence in Occupational Health and Safety Matters – Article from Langlois Kronstrom Desjardins
  • Workplace investigation key to avoiding liability in discrimination claims – Article from Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP
  • Law Society of the NWT releases discussion paper on Trinity Western University.

Weekly SCOPE Poll – Your Opinion Matters!

Tell Us What You REALLY Think – in the weekly SCOPE Poll

This week’s poll is about legal referral businesses that are owned by non-licensees. These companies act as “brokers,” advertising to the public, and charging a fee to paralegals for the opportunity to have clients referred to them. Should these businesses be regulated by the LSUC?

Paralegal Resources & Information Sources

Practise Makes Perfect – Exam Prep Test

Just in time for the upcoming Paralegal Licensing Exams, a new online resource from a familiar name could help paralegal Candidates to feel more confident and prepared as they head into the examination room.

Emond Montgomery Publications, widely regarded as one of Canada’s leading academic law publishers, has developed a timed practise exam for paralegal Candidates. The 60 questions are designed to mimic the Ontario Paralegal Licensing Exam.


LSUC Injunction Shuts Down Website

An internet site has been shut down, its owner prohibited from providing legal services, after a Superior Court judge granted a request by the Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC).

The Law Society had sought a permanent injunction prohibiting John Dzelme from practising law, from providing legal services, and from holding himself out as a person who may practice law or provide legal services in Ontario. It also asked a prohibition against Mr. Dzelme, from practising law and providing legal services through his website,

Superior Court Justice Frederick Myers issued the injunction Aug. 11, finding that Dzelme had contravened section 26.1 of the Law Society Act R.S.O. 1990, c.L.8. Court relied on Subsections 1(5), (6) and (7) of the Act for guidance on the meaning of the terms “legal services,” “provision of legal services” and “representation in a proceeding.”

“… by providing draft documents to clients for use in their legal proceedings and providing clients with advice and applicable law concerning steps in the proceedings, Mr. Dzelme is “representing” his clients in those proceeding.”
Justice Myers found that Dzelme prepared documents for use in clients’ family law proceedings, gave his views as to strategies to adopt, researched and explained case law. Dzelme’s clients signed contracts that acknowledged he was not a lawyer and could not provide legal advice.


LSUC Webinars – Rules, Tools & Tips

A free live webinar and a recorded session are among the resources from the Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC) of particular interest to paralegals.

Register soon for “The Amended Paralegal Rules of Conduct and the Paralegal Professional Conduct Guidelines.” Learn what you need to know about Rules changes coming into effect this October.

Learn more about LSUC webinars

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