Innovating Regulation Consultation Report Released

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By Barbra Bailey, Policy Counsel
Law Society of Saskatchewan

From May to June 2016, the law societies of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba collaborated to consult with lawyers in those jurisdictions on entity and compliance-based regulation.

The Innovating Regulation Consultation Report provides a summary of the consultation.  In reviewing the analysis, it should be taken into consideration that the number of lawyers who participated in our consultation is insufficient to be considered statistically representative, however the feedback and input we received from lawyers across the prairie provinces was invaluable.

Our joint consultation provided an opportunity for two-way dialogue – to educate, as well as to gather information to help identify challenges, mitigate risks and make informed decisions about the future regulation of the legal profession.  A consultation hub – – was created to inform and encourage engagement and to serve as a base for all our consultation materials, including a discussion paper and abstract, videos, formal consultation questions and an open discussion forum.  Each province hosted face-to-face consultations and webinars to inform lawyers about the issues, initiate discussion and solicit input.

Consultation as a means of building an effective relationship with our stakeholders is characterized by sharing of information, transparency and trust.  We are committed to a long-term engagement with the profession that evolves over time and will strive to continuously improve our consultation efforts.

Next steps on entity and compliance-based regulation will be communicated in the near future.

Read more about the consultation and feedback collected in the Consultation Report and Appendix.


Highlights from Day 4 of Access to Justice Week on Rural and Remote Access to Justice

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By  the student leaders of the College of Law’s “Small Urban and Rural Initiatives Committee”, Jessica Kelly, Allison Graham, Liam Fitz-Gerald, Brady Knight and Darcy Dumont

a2jphoto9As was mentioned in a previous Access to Justice Week post highlighting Rural and Remote Access to Justice, the “Small Urban and Rural Initiatives Committee” (SURC) are interested in promoting legal careers across Saskatchewan and as such each year organize a trip for a group of students to visit a community outside of Saskatoon. On Friday, October 20, twenty-three College of Law students went on a community visit to North Battleford and Battleford.

Here are some reflections students had about the trip in general, and on the topic of access to justice in small urban, rural, and remote communities.

Interviewee 1:  Ally Sparks, 2L student

  1. How did you like the trip to North Battleford?

“I really enjoyed it. I was actually really impressed. When I went I didn’t think I’d work or want to work in North Battleford, I was thinking of applying in Prince Albert and Moose Jaw and I thought going on the rural trip would give me insight into other rural centres and after leaving I thought it seemed cool.”

  1. What do you think of these areas being underserviced and these smaller areas in regard to access to justice?

“I think it is a problem. I don’t know the numbers. You have a hard time enticing professionals, things like lawyers, doctors, psychologists, teachers, to go to rural communities and I think part of that is to get that education, you have to go to a bigger center and then there’s such a culture of needing to stay in the big center to be successful. That leads to this feeling of “if I go to a small centre, that means I’m not successful as a lawyer” and I think that’s untrue.”

“I think quality of life and contentment with career is one thing but for a lot of people it’s making a difference or advancing in their career or being successful in their career is a separate goal that they have that they think they can’t achieve in a small center but I think they can, especially if your goal is the feeling of a good lawyer. I think you’ll get that experience more quickly in a smaller center then in a larger center.”


Interviewee 2:  Owen Stewart, 1L student

  1. How did you like the trip to North Battleford?

“I had a fantastic time. I’m not from the province and it was a good opportunity to get out of the campus residence bubble and to see a smaller town, and anything outside Saskatoon and to actually see the prairies for the first time in my life. I didn’t get an opportunity before this to get to go to a smaller firm so I’m thankful for that experience because it shows the other side of the coin for potential work experience going forward. Also the different work the smaller firms deal with and the different issues these smaller communities have that these smaller firms try to address and the closer relationship you have with the smaller community.”

  1. What do you think of these areas being underserviced and these smaller areas in regard to access to justice?

“It clearly is an issue. To spin it one way, it’s an opportunity for a young future lawyer like myself. You talk to all these people in law school stressed about finding work and it was fantastic to hear that there is work available if you’re looking to come here. In terms of other access to justice issues, when you go to a smaller town and if it’s where I’m from and you no longer have a resource economy and you have people unemployed and not on the right side of the law they need representation.”


LAST CHANCE! – Conducting Efficient Litigation within the New QB Rules

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cpdlogoThis full day seminar takes place on:

Tuesday Nov 1, 2016 – Saskatoon (TCU Place)
Thursday Nov 3, 2016 – Regina (Delta)

This event qualifies for 6 CPD hours, 1.5 of which qualify as Ethics.

This unique and important opportunity has been spearheaded by The Honourable Chief Justice M.D. Popescul  and we are delighted to be welcoming an esteemed and accomplished faculty to guide us through this comprehensive course on Family Law and Civil Litigation files from the moment they are opened to trial. The common theme of designing and organising your own unique system in order to be more efficient and innovative will carry through each section as we move through the Beginning, Middle and End of the life of the file.

Don’t miss out on this vital day of CPD programming for all litigators!

For more details and to register follow the link: Conducting Efficient Litigation


Highlights from Day 5 of Access to Justice Week

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a2jweekBy Brea Lowenberger, Access to Justice Coordinator and Alexandra Santos, Just Rights student group member

A previous post announced the launch of the Architects of Justice program in Saskatchewan. On Monday, October 24, members of the Just Rights student group participated as volunteers in the launch of the program.

This is what law students had to say about the volunteer experience:

While volunteering for Architects of Justice I enjoyed hearing how people think access to justice can be improved. I felt like I was contributing to efforts to improve the justice system while also challenging my own perceptions of access to justice.

– Davida Bentham

We were able to hear from over 40 people in the first hour of our launch – which was incredible! There is so much potential for the information and ideas we collect to make a positive impact on our justice system. These questions also encourage reflection and provide a tangible way for participants to contribute to change. Architects of Justice is all about engaging community. I love that students get to be a part of this conversation.

– Alex Santos

I think being able to be a part of the kickoff of the project in Saskatoon was a super unique opportunity. People were so responsive and willing to participate which was very encouraging and great to see! It was a great way to chat with people in a very relaxed environment and I felt as though people were very open and felt free to express their opinions which was fantastic. I’m really excited for all of the possibilities with this project. I would definitely recommend it as a volunteer role. It was not stressful at all and it was really interesting to get to talk with people and hear different perspectives. I think it has the potential to make a big difference! And I am thrilled to be a part of it.

– Amanda Kimpinski

Haven’t contributed to the survey yet?  Please accept our invitation to imagine the justice system of the future.  Take the survey here.

Highlights from Day 4 of Access to Justice Week

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By Jocelyn Gagne
Public Legal Education Association of Saskatchewan



Didn’t catch Day 4 of Access to Justice Week?  Here are some highlights…

In “A Spotlight on Legal information for Newcomers: Launch of PLEA’s Newcomer Website and Initiative”, staff from PLEA engaged in a travelling launch tour to locations around Saskatoon to share about NewLI.

As described in detail in our earlier post on A2J for Newcomers, NewLi provides plain language legal information about laws, governments and the justice system. It promotes access to justice for this vulnerable segment of the population by allaying fears that may keep newcomers from confidently participating in and benefiting from Canada’s justice and administrative systems.

NewLI is now launched.  Visit us at


Municipal Conflict of Interest Act

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By Ken Fox

The remaining provisions of the Municipal Conflict of Interest Amendment Act, 2015, SS 2015, c. 30, are now in effect. Sections 2-5, 2-6, 3-5, 3-6, 4-5 and 4-6 are proclaimed into force October 26, 2016. The new provisions require municipal councils to adopt a model code of ethics and all council members are to take a prescribed oath or affirmation. For more information on the amendment, please view the government new release.


Highlights from Day 2 of Access to Justice Week

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By Brea Lowenberger
Access To Justice Coordinator, University of Saskatchewan, College of Law

Didn’t catch Day 2 of Saskatchewan Access to Justice Week? Here are some highlights…


On Wednesday, October 19, the College of Law hosted a career panel for law students and lawyers on “doing law differently” called Creating Your Career in the 21st Century: A Panel on Emerging Career Opportunities and New Ways to Practice Law.

The panel topic was inspired by the Canadian Bar Association’s Do Law Differently and Reaching Equal Justice Reports.  The panel featured four lawyers and legal entrepreneurs who identify with “doing law differently” and having an access to justice orientation:

  • Thomas Hamilton, Vice-President Strategic Partnerships from ROSS Intelligence, home of “the world’s first artificially intelligent lawyer” (San Fransisco)
  • Andrea James, Corporate-Commercial Lawyer and Entrepreneur, Jamesco LLP (Calgary)
  • Stacy Muller, Inaugural Crown Counsel, Justice Innovation Division, Ministry of Justice and now Assistant Director, Dispute Resolution Office (Regina)
  • Amanda Dodge, Lawyer and Systemic Initiatives Program Coordinator, CLASSIC (Saskatoon)

The panelists took the audience through their first year of law school to their current career and discussed what makes their work related to access to justice and innovation, important to the public, and attractive to clients.

The panelists ended with sharing “who they want on their team”, that is what attributes they are looking for in who they want to hire, retain, or collaborate with.

Upper year College of Law student Kelsey Corrigan commented, “The panelists were interesting and I liked the tips about how to make law fit your life, your passions, and your goals”.

The practice of law is changing, and discussions like this are critical to be having in law schools”, stated panelist Thomas Hamilton.

For ideas on how to “do law differently” in Saskatchewan, see our related Access to Justice Week post.