Law Society budget moderates fee increases for lawyers — no increase for paralegals
Convocation approved its 2014 budget with a modest annual fee increase of 0.8 per cent for lawyers and no increase for paralegals. The 2014 fee for a practising lawyer will increase by $15, from $1,851 to $1,866, while the fee for licensed paralegals will remain at $996. Full report. Approved Budget Summary.
Rules of Professional Conduct amended to implement Federation’s Model Code
Convocation approved amendments to the lawyers’ Rules of Professional Conduct to implement the Federation of Law Societies of Canada’s Model Code of Professional Conduct. The new rules come into effect October 1, 2014. Most amendments are minor, however some changes are more substantive and introduce new standards. The Law Society is developing new and updating existing resources to assist lawyers and will offer CPD programs on the amended rules. More information with summary of changes.
Enhancements to articling program approved
As part of the Pathways pilot project, Convocation approved the implementation of performance-based evaluations of candidates in the articling program. The enhancements to the program will be in place for the 2014-15 licensing year. Convocation also decided to defer consideration of the optimal focus and format of the final skills/culminating assessment until more information is available about learning outcomes in the articling program and the Law Practice Program (LPP). The Law Society is also developing measures to better evaluate the effectiveness of the articling program. Full report.
At its November 2012 meeting, Convocation approved the three-year Pathways pilot project that will allow lawyer licensing candidates to either article or complete a LPP. More on Pathways.
Call for input regarding AGM approved
Convocation approved a call for input from lawyers and paralegals on some options under consideration for revitalizing the Law Society's Annual General Meeting. The deadline for submissions is December 16, 2013. More information.
Law Society establishes Human Rights Award
A new Law Society Human Rights Award will be granted every two years to recognize outstanding contributions to the advancement of human rights and the promotion of the rule of law, nationally and internationally. Full report.
Human Rights Monitoring Group Intervention approved
Convocation approved an intervention respecting human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh in Iran. Full report.
Guide for creating an inclusive work environment updated
The Law Society has updated the guide Sexual orientation and gender identity: Creating an inclusive work environment – a guide for law firms and other organizations. Full report.
By-Law 6 amended re: mobility insurance provisions
Convocation amended By-Law 6 [Professional Liability Insurance] to implement insurance provisions of the National Mobility Agreement 2013. Full report.
Policy for funding of external organizations amended
Convocation amended a policy for funding requests from external organizations for initiatives that assist the Law Society in fulfilling its mandate. The Law Society will now invite applications to meet identified needs rather than accept a variety of grant applications as part of the annual budget process. Full report.
Bencher Avvy Go was appointed to the Hearing Panel for a term ending May 22, 2014.