The First Wave of CanLII Authors Program Content

Posted on

By Sarah Sutherland; reposted with permission from the CanLII blog

Since the launch of the CanLII Authors Program, we are pleased to announce we have received some impressive submissions.

We are grateful to the first contributors of this program who have shared their work, which helps promote free access to legal information and spread new ideas.

Here is a list of the works from the first wave of CanLII authors:

Edward D. (Ned) Brown – Pitblado LLP

Selwyn A. Pieters – Pieters Law Office

Nicholas Reynolds – Student-at-law at Blaney McMurtry LLP

  • The New Neighbour Principle: Reasonable Expectations, Relationality, and Good Faith in Pre-Contractual Negotiations2017 CanLIIDocs 395

Michael H. Ryan – MHRyan Law

Jason Ward – Ward Lawyers

Han-Ru Zhou – Université de Montréal Faculty of Law

  • L’immunité de la Couronne à l’égard des lois, la Loi sur le droit d’auteur et l’affaire Manitoba c Canadian Copyright Licensing Agency, 2018 CanLIIDocs 163

Whether you write articles, books, or any type of legal commentary, we can showcase your work on the most popular legal information resource in Canada.

Ready to be a part of the CanLII Author’s Program? Submit a project using the red button below.

More questions? Contact us!

New Books in the Library – Summer 2018 Part II

Posted on Updated on

By Sara Stanley 

Lindley & Banks on Partnership, 20th Ed. – Roderick I’Anson Banks

Lindley & Banks on Partnership gives you comprehensive, authoritative and practical coverage of the law relating to both general and limited partnerships. This seminal text on partnerships, first published in 1860, gives you detailed commentary on all aspects of the life of a partnership, from its nature and formation to the usual contents of a partnership agreement and common areas of dispute, the liabilities undertaken by partners both internally and externally and, finally, to dissolution, winding up and insolvency. It also explains how partnerships are taxed. The twentieth edition covers all legal changes since the last edition, with reference to UK and Commonwealth authorities where relevant.”

Kerr & Hunter on Receivers and Administrators, 20th Ed. – Pete Walton, Thomas Robinson, Sarah Mann, and David Montague

“First published in 1869, Kerr & Hunter on Receivers and Administrators is acknowledged as the classic text on the law of receivers and administrators as it applies to both corporate and personal insolvency, and is frequently cited in court. It guides practitioners through all matters relating to administrators and receivers – when/how/why they are appointed, and the various situations in which they are deployed. The work has been updated to incorporate all legislative and case law developments since the previous edition.”

Williams, Mortimer & Sunnucks – Executors, Administrators and Probate, 21st Ed. – John Ross Martyn and Nicholas Caddick

Williams, Mortimer and Sunnucks provides in-depth guidance to the law of probate and the administration of estates after death. It is considered in the market to be one of the leading authorities on the subject offering an in-depth analysis of the law and how it applies in practice.

This title offers solutions to the most complex problems through authoritative analysis of the law and how it has been applied by the courts. It covers the grant of probate and of administration, non-contentious and contentious practice, devolution and liability, and the administration and distribution of assets, so that you are up to date on every aspect of the process of probate.

The authors also explain the implications of case law developments, including important decisions on testamentary capacity, knowledge and approval, undue influence, due execution, and costs.”

Principles of Property Law, 7th Ed. – Bruce Ziff

“Designed to provide an introduction to the fundamentals of the law of property in Canada, this publication reflects the diverse and changing face of property law.

This book lays the foundation for property-related areas, including real estate conveyancing and land registration, landlord and tenant law, estate planning and succession, trusts, equity and restitution, Aboriginal rights, bailments, and mortgage remedies.”

Collective Agreement Arbitration in Canada, 6th Ed. – Ronald M. Snyder

“This seminal treatise continues to be hailed as both “important” and a “leading text” to address workplace issues in the unionized context, providing unparalleled analysis on all major collective agreement concerns and policy. This book has been the stable reference guide for a generation of labour lawyers, human resource professionals and unions looking to find out – quickly and conveniently – what is the law on a specific labour issue, and the leading cases that support it.”

A Guide to the Youth Criminal Justice Act, 2019 Ed. – Lee Tustin and Robert E. Lutes

“This concise guide to the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) provides an overview of the youth criminal justice system in Canada, section-by-section commentary on legal and operational implications, and captures key recent developments. A must-have for anyone dealing with young persons and who needs to understand how the YCJA is implemented.”

Youth and the Criminal Law in Canada, 2nd Ed. – Sherri Davis-Barron

“This book addresses practical problems faced daily by prosecutors, defence lawyers, police officers and judges who are dealing with youth justice cases. Every step of the criminal process involving young persons is addressed, including pretrial proceedings, legal representation, release pending trial and sentencing. It provides an historical overview of the development of youth justice law in Canada, from the earliest legal codes to the present day Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA).

The new edition has extensive revisions to account for all major developments in the legislation and case law since 2009. With this thoroughly updated, meticulously researched and expanded second edition, Youth and the Criminal Law in Canada cements its place as the classic legal textbook on youth criminal law in Canada and the Youth Criminal Justice Act. Written by a federal advisory Crown and university law lecturer for law professors, law students and legal practitioners, no other legal textbook in Canada covers this niche area of the criminal law more comprehensively.”


Sources: LexisNexis, Sweet & Maxwell, Thomson Reuters

Collecting Demographic Data to Better Understand our Membership and Address Barriers in the Legal Profession

Posted on Updated on

By Barbra Bailey, Director of Policy

The Saskatchewan public is growing increasingly diverse.  Data from the 2016 Census shows that 16.3% of Saskatchewan’s population self-identified as being Aboriginal, compared to 14.7% in 2006.  Further, in 2016, 10.8% of Saskatchewan’s population identified as visible minorities, compared to 3.6% of the population in 2006.  Immigrants and non-permanent residents accounted for 11.65% of our province’s population in 2016, compared to 5.5% in 2006.  The number of self-identifying same-sex couples increased by 6.7% from 2011-2016.  The number of seniors (aged 65 and over) increased by 10.9% from 2011 to 2016. [1]

The Canadian legal profession is also becoming increasingly diverse and is now comprised of many equity-seeking groups.  In Saskatchewan, we have seen an increase in the number of foreign-trained lawyers admitted to the bar through the National Committee on Accreditation (NCA) process, with the number increasing from 5 in 2012 to 14 in 2017.  However, while we can guess from statistics collected in other Canadian jurisdictions that diversity is increasing in other ways, the Law Society of Saskatchewan has not historically collected data on the demographics of our profession.

In order to better understand the makeup of the membership of the Law Society of Saskatchewan and how it changes over time, it is important to establish some baseline data.  In order to do this, the Law Society began asking members to voluntarily self-identify as members of equity-seeking communities in 2017, through a survey delivered as part of the annual renewal process.

Over 900 members responded to the survey.  Out of those responses, 6.5% identified as being First Nations, Métis or Inuit, 7% identified as being part of a visible minority group and 3% identified as being Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender.  With respect to language, 0.5% identified French as being their first language, with an additional 1% stating that they were fluent in both French and English.  A further 2% stated that their first language was something other than French or English.  Finally, 2% stated that they had a physical disability and 3% identified as having mental health issues.

In order to measure changes in the makeup of our membership, the Law Society will continue collecting data through the annual renewal process on a voluntary basis.

The importance of data

The Benchers of the Law Society of Saskatchewan have identified the increase of equity, diversity and inclusion in legal service provision as a priority.  A legal profession that reflects the diversity of society provides opportunities for all people to seek representation from a lawyer whom they feel comfortable with.  In this way, having a diverse bar serves the public interest.   The information collected through the survey will help the Law Society to both measure changes in the diversity of our profession over time, and develop and monitor equity initiatives.

The Canadian Bar Association’s (CBA) Demographic Trends Report, published in 2013 as part of the CBA’s Futures Initiative, reported on 13 trends in the Canadian legal profession.  One of those trends related to diversity, as follows:

 According to the localized statistics available, progress on increasing diversity in the legal profession is not consistent with the make-up of the general population. An effort should be made to collect relevant data on a national basis.[1]

The CBA’s primary report of the Futures Initiative, entitled “Futures: Transforming the Delivery of Legal Services in Canada,” published in 2014, also identified limited access to the legal profession by members of diverse and equity-seeking groups as a barrier to change in the legal profession.  That report opined that lawyers from these groups could bring fresh perspectives and solutions to improving access to legal services in Canada and that, it is “important to develop models that facilitate an expansion of diversity within the legal profession, and to educate new types of lawyers who will be willing and able to innovate in meeting existing and unmet needs.”  The Futures Report also listed the absence of good data on the Canadian legal profession as an impediment to change. [2]

The Futures Report made a recommendation that law societies should uniformly collect qualitative and quantitative data about the demographic composition of all licensed legal service providers and publish the data in aggregate form.  The Report anticipates that the information collected could be used to “raise awareness of barriers, provide an evidence base for examining diversity issues, identify regulatory problem areas, and show varied progress towards better diversity and inclusivity.” [3]

To get a better picture of the diversity within their membership, several law societies collect demographic data about language, race/ethnicity, disability and sexual orientation/sexual identity in addition to data about gender and age. They do so by including self-identification questions in their annual membership forms.  To date, at least six other law societies collect different demographic data beyond gender and age: British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Québec and Nova Scotia.  The Law Societies Equity Network (LSEN) has developed common categories for comparing this data through the Federation of Law Societies of Canada, with the goal of creating a Diversity Profile of the Canadian Legal Profession.  This data can be used to both measure diversity and to develop and monitor equity initiatives.

In January 2017, the Law Society of Saskatchewan re-established the Equity & Diversity Committee (the “Committee”).  The Committee’s Terms of Reference state that it shall assist the Benchers of the Law Society of Saskatchewan by:

  1. monitoring developments and providing advice on issues affecting equity and diversity in the legal profession;
  2. exploring and recommending actions and/or initiatives to be taken with respect to equity and diversity within the legal profession; and
  3. making recommendations for and supporting ongoing education and awareness training for members of the legal profession relating to equity and diversity.

The Committee determined that an important first step in fulfilling its purpose was to become informed about the issues affecting equity and diversity in the legal profession and to establish baseline data about the makeup of the profession in Saskatchewan.  The Committee therefore decided to begin collecting demographic data from members on a voluntary basis, using the categories developed jointly by the other jurisdictions in Canada that collect this data.

How the data will be used in Saskatchewan

As part of the annual renewal process, members may choose whether to complete a short survey which asks members how they identify with respect to gender, race, sexual orientation, disability and language.  The survey is conducted through Survey Monkey so that the results cannot be associated with a member’s Law Society profile.  Members who wish to identify with some of these communities or traits but not others may choose to answer only certain questions.

Members will then be asked to click one of two boxes, stating that they have either completed the survey or that they have chosen not to complete the survey.   The survey results will be confidential and will only be available in aggregate form.  In no way can they be used to identify any individual lawyer and the Law Society will not be able to determine which members took the survey.

The Law Society of Saskatchewan has collected data for many years about age, gender and type of practice of Saskatchewan lawyers.   Driven in part by these statistics the Law Society recently developed several resources that can be used by legal work places in the areas of parental leave, flexible work arrangements and mentorship with the aim of retaining lawyers who may require some supports in those areas.  The statistics showed that, although 49% of law students are women, only 37% of active lawyers in Saskatchewan are women and only 53% of those are in private practice, compared to 71% of male lawyers.   The initiative, called the Justicia Project, was done in partnership with volunteers from Saskatchewan law firms who saw a need for those types of supports for lawyers.

The Justicia Project has been met with positive feedback and the Law Society would like to develop further resources and programming for other segments of the profession who may be in need of supports, due to barriers they may face in their career based on their personal circumstances.  In order to address the need for initiatives that support our membership, we first need to know who our members and prospective members are and what type of needs they might have.  To support these efforts, the Committee has invited members to share their personal experience as members of equity-seeking groups in either entering, practicing in, or remaining in the legal profession in Saskatchewan.  To expand upon this understanding, the Committee plans to consult with the membership more widely in 2019 about any experiences they have had with respect to equity, diversity and inclusion issues within the legal profession.

The aggregate statistics collected through the both the annual renewal process and the upcoming consultation will help the Law  Society of Saskatchewan to enhance the representation of diverse  communities in the profession, to better understand demographic trends provincially  and nationally, to develop programs and initiatives within the mandate  of the Law Society of Saskatchewan to address issues relating to equity and  diversity in the profession, to identify any arbitrary barriers to entry and advancement and to promote equity and diversity in the profession  generally.  We would appreciate your participation to help us carry out this important work.

[1] Statistics Canada, 2006 Census Data;   Statistics Canada, 2011 Census Data; Statistics Canada, 2016 Census Data

[2] CBA Legal Futures Initiative, “Contributing Perspective: Demographic Trends” at p. 13

[3] CBA Legal Futures Initiative, “Futures: Transforming the Delivery of Legal Services in Canada,” at pg. 26

[4] Ibid., p. 48-49.

For lawyers: Please update your contact information for important communications about your annual membership renewal

Posted on

It’s that time of the year again.  The Law Society will be sending out its annual renewal package next week and this year the entire process will be electronic.  This means it is very important to make sure your contact information in your Law Society member profile is up to date.  If you have had a change in employment in the last year, or have changed your contact information for any other reason, please log in to your member profile to update it before next week.  It is particularly important that you ensure that your email address is up to date, as that is where we will be sending all communications about the annual renewal process this year.  To do this, please visit and click on the “Member Profile Login” button on the upper right-hand corner of the News Page and log in with your Barrister Number and password.  Once you have logged in, click “View Profile” in the upper left-hand corner.  Review your information and click the “Edit” button for any portion that requires updating and save the changes.  Please call the Law Society at 1-306-569-8242 or 1-833-733-0133 if you have any questions.

Primer on Saskatchewan’s Legalization of Cannabis

Posted on

By Alan Kilpatrick

Do you need to get up speed on legal cannabis?  The Law Society Library’s team of information professionals have put together this brief primer for you.

You can find a variety of posts about Saskatchewan’s legalization of cannabis on Legal Sourcery, the Law Society of Saskatchewan Library blog:

Law Society members can purchase this recorded CPD seminar that explores cannabis from insurance, criminal, labour, and law enforcement perspectives:

Saskatchewan’s Public Legal Education Association (PLEA) has also produced this excellent document.  It provides a practical and straightforward overview of the province’s new cannabis regulatory scheme:

PLEA, as you know, is a non-profit organization that creates plain language legal information for the public.  Those who want to learn more can also consult this helpful page created by the Government of Saskatchewan:

Finally, researchers will be grateful to learn that Saskatchewan’s Legislative Library has created an in-depth bibliography of articles, scholarly sources, and resources that explore legal cannabis use:

Foundations of the Common Law Library (1215-1914)

Posted on Updated on

By Ken Fox

Let’s talk about Legal Information Institutes (LIIs). Every Canadian legal researcher knows about CanLII (I least we hope you do). But there is also LII (that’s the USA one), BaiLII (Britain and Ireland), AustLII (Australasia), AsianLII, HKLII (Hong Kong), PacLII (Pacific Islands), SAFLII (Southern Africa), WorldLII, and many others, all of which are part of the larger Access to Law Movement.

LIIs provide free access to current, primary law in their jurisdiction. But they do not always contain comprehensive collections of historic materials (in all cases, I assume, they are working on it). In the English-speaking world, the most earnest attempt to fill in the historical gaps is CommonLII, which covers the world of common law (assuming there is a high correlation between commonwealth countries and common law countries, that is).

Recently, CommonLII enhanced their historical vision with the Foundations of the Common Law Library (1215-1914). No, 1215 is not a typo. In addition to the Magna Carta, the site includes many obscure statutes from the thirteenth century and forward, including, for instance, the Treason Act of 1351.

The collection of English Reports goes back to 1220, but seems a bit patchy when compared to the statute law, as there are hundreds of cases tagged January 1220, but then nothing more until the year 1457. Despite being “reports,” many of these records are no more than what we would today call summaries or digests – an example from 1491:

Conusee. –A man had lands of ancient demesne in extent for debt, and they were recovered from him by the sufferance of the vouchee, whereby he was ousted ; in this case he shall be holpen here. Morton, Chancellor ; per Assent, Bryan, and Hussey, Justices (7 H. 7. 11 [1491-921).

It might require a historical legal scholar to determine in what way the debtor was “holpen” (helped) in this case, but it appears that people in 1491 got themselves into similar situations that many of us do in the 21st Century.

“Foundations” is perhaps an overused metaphor. Is the modern law really built upon these judgments, in the way that a courthouse is built upon concrete footings? In reviewing the above ruling and a few others, I am more inclined to think of them as the infancy of the common law. The law was smaller, simpler, and by appearances, more innocent. The modern law grows out of it, rather than resting upon it. In any event, to invoke yet another overused metaphor, this is the fresh spring that over time will become the mighty river that is the common law.

What else does this collection include? It’s a bit of a mixed bag. In the case of Canada, it includes only a link to the complete Supreme Court of Canada judgments on CanLII. For Australia, who led in the development of CommonLII, there are law report series for all provinces, each going back to the 19th Century or earlier. There are also collections for Uganda, Southern and Western Africa, Hong Kong, Burma, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Jamaica, Bahamas, and ever other country in the Commonwealth with a significant collection of reported case law.

So the next time you see a citation for a very old British judgment, or one from any common law jurisdiction, or you just feel like exploring the cracks and fissures in the footings beneath modern jurisprudence, remember to revisit and return to the Foundations.

Upcoming CPD Activities – November

Posted on Updated on

NEW! Webinar: Ethical Issues for In-House Counsel
Thursday November 15, 2018 – Noon to 1pm

The Ethical issues faced by In-House Counsel are unique in a number of ways, and as such warrant specific consideration, separate from the typical ethical issues that may arise in the private practice arena. This webinar will discuss these unique challenges from the perspective of an In-House counsel lawyer with a multinational company, Angela Giroux, and the Law Society’s Acting Director of Complaints, Valerie Payne.

The session will primarily address three areas in which ethical issues may arise:

  1. Conflicts of Interest;
  2. Maintaining Privilege; and
  3. Managing Multiple Roles.

Valerie Payne has been with the Complaints department of the Law Society since 2012, first as Complaints Counsel and more recently also as Acting Director of Complaints. Angela Giroux has been with Nutrien, previously PotashCorp, since 2013, in the roles of Compliance and Ethics counsel and Labour and Employment Counsel.

Qualifies for 1 CPD Hour, which also qualifies as Ethics

To register follow this link:  Ethical Issues for In-House Counsel

Seminar: Family Law – Through The Eyes of The Child

Tuesday November 20, 2018 – Saskatoon (TCU Place)

Wednesday November 21, 2018 – Regina (Delta Hotel)

This important session has been conceived of by a group of family law practitioners and judges with the express purpose of aiding lawyers in navigating the murky waters of high conflict parental separation and disputes. It seeks to offer a basic understanding of the pathologies underpinning these often-fraught situations and some remedies for ensuring the best interests of the children are always kept in the forefront of proceedings.

We are delighted to be welcoming a renowned Clinical Psychologist to present alongside a group of local experts who will discuss the resources available to lawyers here in Saskatchewan, before we complete the day with an accomplished panel offering a practical presentation on how to recognise when court is necessary and to prepare accordingly.

We encourage all Family Law practitioners to join us for this highly informative and important day of CPD!

Qualifies for 5.5 CPD Hours, all of which qualify as Ethics (correction from previously indicated allocation).

For additional information and to register, click here: Through The Eyes of The Child

Free Webinar: Providing Pro Bono Services in Saskatchewan – How I can Help?

Thursday November 22, 2018 – noon to 1pm

This webinar is being offered free of charge.

Lawyers have the privilege to be experts in the rule of law and provide quality and effective legal services in order to solve client’s problems on a daily basis. With that privilege, comes an acknowledgement that not all members of the public are able to access private counsel services due to their socio-economic status. As we all know, there are many opportunities to take on pro bono files, but there may be questions about the logistics of taking on a file. Do I have to do a conflict check? Am I insured when taking on a pro bono file? What makes a file qualify for “pro bono”? This pro bono webinar will discuss the Code of Conduct rules for providing pro bono services and answers questions regarding conflict checks, insurance coverage, and what are the available pro bono opportunities in Saskatchewan.

This webinar will be presented by Carly Romanow, Executive Director of Pro Bono Law Saskatchewan and Kara-Dawn Jordan, Policy Counsel with the Law Society of Saskatchewan.

Qualifies for 1 CPD Hour, which also qualifies as Ethics