November 2008

Law Society budget introduces minimal fee increases for 2009
Convocation approved its 2009 budget with modest annual fee increases of three per cent for lawyers and 6.5 per cent for paralegals. As a result, the 2009 fee for a practising lawyer will increase by $50, from $1,653 to $1,703, while the fee for licensed paralegals will increase by $55, from $845 to $900.

See the Finance Committee report , Draft Budget Summary , news release and fact sheet for more information.

2009 LibraryCo Inc. budget approved
Convocation approved the 2009 LibraryCo budget for incorporation into the 2009 Law Society annual fee for lawyers. The LibraryCo levy for 2009 is $220 per lawyer down from $235 in 2008.

See the Finance Committee report for more information.

Practice management review program selection criteria revised
Enhanced selection criteria for the practice management review program will ensure that more sole practitioners and small firm lawyers will benefit from the program.

The practice management review program is proactive and preventive. It supports lawyers' goals to be efficient, effective and competent by reviewing practice systems.

The original criteria for selection for participation were one to eight years from the call to the bar and in private practice. These criteria remain in place.

Enhanced criteria will now also select firms in approximate proportion to the percentage of law firms represented in Law Society conduct matters and LAWPRO negligence claims.

Convocation approved the enhanced selection criteria at its November meeting.

See the Professional Development and Competence committee report for more information.

Law Society submission on Federation's Task Force on the Approved Common Law Degree Consultation Paper
Convocation approved the Law Society's submission on the consultation paper of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada Task Force on the Approved Common Law Degree. The Federation's consultation paper explores a number of issues related to legal education and approval of common law degrees for the purpose of entrance into law society bar admission/licensing programs. Canadian law societies were invited to provide comments on the paper.

See the Licensing and Accreditation Task Force's report for more information

Delegation of mediations at FSCO
Convocation approved a policy to provide that lawyers handling claims that involve catastrophic impairment at the Financial Services Commission of Ontario be permitted to delegate the mediation of subsidiary issues to licensed paralegals employed by their firm. Amendments to By-Law 7.1 [Operational Obligations and Responsibilities] reflecting the policy will be brought to Convocation for approval at a future meeting.

See the Paralegal Standing Committee report for more information.

Final wording of advertising rules approved
Convocation approved the final wording of Rule 3 of the Rules of Professional Conduct and Rule 8 of the Paralegal Rules of Conduct . At its October meeting, Convocation approved amendments to the rules based on the Committees' drafts. The final version was reviewed by the Law Society's Rules drafter. The amended rules provide a more concise statement of the key regulatory concepts relevant to advertising and marketing.

See the Professional Regulation Committee and the Paralegal Standing Committee reports for more information.

Proposed Lawyer Oath at Call to the Bar
Convocation discussed the oath for the Call to the Bar and referred it back to the Committee.

See the Professional Development and Competence committee report for more information.

Annual General Meeting Motion
The Secretary's Report to Convocation regarding the motion carried at the Law Society's Annual General Meeting was presented to Convocation for information.

See the Secretary's Report to Convocation for more information.

By-Law 7 [Business Entities] amended
At its October meeting, Convocation amended By-Law 7 regarding partnerships between lawyers and licensed paralegals. The amendments were made in English only. Convocation approved the same amendments in French at its November meeting.

See the Professional Regulation Committee report for more information.

Appointments
Bencher Glenn Hainey was removed from the Human Rights Monitoring Group at his request. Bencher Mark Sandler was removed from the Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee at his request.

Agenda and Minutes

Agenda
Minutes

Reports

Finance Committee Report

Licensing and Accreditation Task Force

  • Additional materials
  • Federation of Law Societies Task Force on the Approved Law Degree Consultation Paper

Paralegal Standing Committee Report

  • Delegation of Mediations at FSCO (Amendment to By-Law 7.1)
  • Revised Wording of Rule 8 of Paralegal Rules of Conduct (Advertising and Marketing)
  • In Camera Matters

For Information

  • 2009 Paralegal Budget

Professional Development and Competence Committee Report

  • Practice Management Review Program Selection Criteria
  • Lawyers' Oath

For Information

  • Quarterly Benchmark Report

Professional Regulation Committee Report

  • Amendments to Rule 3 of the Rules of Professional Conduct (Advertising and Marketing)
  • By-Law 7 Motion [Business Entities]

Report of the Director of Professional Development and Competence

  • Deemed call candidates

REPORTS FOR INFORMATION ONLY

Audit Committee Report

  • General Fund Financial Statements for the Nine Months Ended September 30, 2008
  • Compensation Fund Financial Statements for the Nine Months Ended September 30, 2008
  • Repayable Allowance Program - Activity Report
  • Investment Compliance Reporting

Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee

  • Public Statement for Pakistan
  • Accessibility Study
  • Public Events

Federation of Law Societies of Canada

  • Response to Competition Bureau

Secretary's Report

  • Annual General Meeting Motion

Tribunals Committee

  • Quarterly Statistics

Motion