New bencher elected
New bencher William J. Simpson of Ottawa was elected at September Convocation. Mr. Simpson was elected to replace Bonnie Warkentin who was appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Justice.
Licensing and Accreditation Task Force
Convocation voted to continue the articling requirement for candidates seeking admission to the bar, to enhance the licensing process, and to require new lawyers to complete 24 hours of continuing education during the first two years of practice.
New initiatives to enhance articling include an online articling registry to enhance information on articling opportunities; creation of a Law Society outreach position dedicated to promoting and co-ordinating articling initiatives and additional job placements; a voluntary bridging program for internationally trained candidates in the licensing process to support their integration into the Ontario legal profession; streamlined articling requirements for internationally trained lawyers; and simplified administration of the program. The licensing process will include a new professional responsibility and practice course integrated with the articling program. Successful completion of that course, the articling requirement and the current licensing examinations are the requirements for call to the bar. Beginning in 2010, all new lawyers called to the Ontario Bar will be required to complete 24 hours of compulsory professional development during their first two years of practice.
See the Licensing and Accreditation Task Force report for more information.
LAWPRO insurance premiums
Convocation accepted LAWPRO's report outlining the Law Society's professional liability insurance program for 2009. The base premium for professional liability insurance coverage for Ontario lawyers in 2009 will be $2,450 per lawyer.
For more information see the LAWPRO report .
Governance Task Force to begin consultation on principles of Law Society governance
The Governance Task Force is set to begin consultations on Law Society governance. The Task Force will first hold a facilitated session with benchers and then consult with members of the professions. Convocation approved a budget of $95,000 for the consultation process.
For more information see the Governance Task Force report .
Project to celebrate early lawyers from diverse communities
Convocation approved funding for a project on early lawyers from diverse communities. The goal of the project is to identify and record the experiences of early lawyers called to the bar from diverse cultural, ethnic, religious, Aboriginal, Francophone, disabled and other communities. The budget for the project is $49,900.
For more information see the Heritage Committee report .
Cheque signing authority
Convocation approved updates to the organization's authorized cheque signing officers and an increase in the threshold governing cheque signing procedures.
For more information see the Finance Committee report .
Errors & omissions insurance fund banking resolution
Convocation approved a new banking resolution regarding the bank account for the Law Society's errors and omissions insurance fund, approving an additional signatory for cheques.
For more information see the Finance Committee report .
Consultation on proposed new Rules of Practice and Procedure extended
Convocation approved the extension of the consultation process on the proposed new Rules of Practice and Procedure to October 31, 2008.
For more information see the Tribunals Committee report
Bencher Bob Aaron was reappointed as the Law Society's representative on the Canadian National Exhibition Association.
Bencher Thomas Conway was appointed Co-Chair of the Retention of Women Working Group (Equity) and appointed to the Licensing & Accreditation Task Force to replace Bonnie Warkentin.
Bencher Susan Elliott was appointed to the Access to Justice Committee.
Bencher Robert Topp was removed from the Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee at his request.
Bencher Joanne St. Lewis was removed from the Professional Development and Competence Committee and the Retention of Women Working Group (Equity) at her request.
Bencher William Simpson was appointed to the Hearing Panel and the Tribunals, Priority Planning, Access to Justice and Government & Public Affairs Committees.
Reports not reached
The Paralegal Standing Committee and the Professional Regulation Committee reports were not reached. The item in the Tribunals Committee report regarding Invitations to Attend was also not reached.
Agenda and Minutes
Finance Committee Report
- J. S. Shirley Denison Fund (In camera)
- Law Society Banking Resolution
- Errors and Omissions Insurance Fund Banking Resolution, Updating Signatories
- 2009 Law Society Budget - Review of Process and Budget Information Session
- Governance Task Force Budget Request
- LibraryCo Inc. 2009 Budget - Status Update
- Investment Manager and Investment Changes at LAWPRO and Impact on Law Society of Upper Canada
Governance Task Force Report
Heritage Committee Report
- Celebrating Early Lawyers from Diverse Communities Project
Licensing and Accreditation Task Force Report
Paralegal Standing Committee Report
- Paralegal Professional Conduct Guidelines
- Exemption - Application of Canadian Society of Professionals in Disability Management
- Exemption - Trade Union Representatives Appearing in Small Claims Court
- Amendments to By-Law 11 Re: Practice Audits
- Amendment to By-Law 8 Re: Paralegal's Annual Report
- Amendment to Paralegal Rules of Conduct Re: Business Structures
- Amendment to Rule 8 of Paralegal Rules of Conduct Re: Advertising and Marketing
- Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants
Professional Regulation Committee Report
- Proposed Amendments to Subrule 6.03(9) of the Rules of Professional Conduct
- Amendments to By-Law 7
- Amendments to Rule 3 of the Rules of Professional Conduct
- Member's Annual Report 2008
- Professional Regulation Division Quarterly Report
Report of the Director of Professional Development and Competence
Tribunals Committee Report
- Proposed New Rules of Practice and Procedure - Extension of Consultation Process
- Publication Policy When Hearing Panels Issue Invitations to Attend
- Updating Tribunal Orders and Dispositions Webpage to Reflect Outcome of Appeals to Courts
- Tribunal Quarterly Statistics for Second Quarter 2008
REPORTS FOR INFORMATION ONLY
Audit Committee Report
- General Fund, Compensation Fund, LibraryCo Inc. and LawPRO Financial Statements for Period Ending June 30, 2008
- Investment Compliance Reporting
- Long-Term Investment Performance
Compensation Fund Committee Report
- Fund Status and Levy Issues
- Orientation to the Fund
- Issues Identified for Future Consideration
- Review Sub-Committee of the Fund
- Grants Paid
Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee Report
- Discrimination and Harassment Counsel Semi-Annual Report
Professional Development and Competence Committee Report
- Professional Development and Competence Department Quarterly Report
- Update on New Law School Proposals