Lawyers face the possibility of numerous unexpected interruptions in their law practices. Contingency planning in the event of disability, death, or other unexpected periods of absence from practice should be considered as a means of providing peace of mind for loved ones, clients, and employees. In addition, unless lawyers properly plan for contingencies, serious prejudice may result to their clients.
In order to promote contingency planning by all lawyers, the Law Society of Upper Canada developed The Contingency Planning Guide, For Lawyers, which is available online and contains the following sample documents and resources to encourage and to assist lawyers to plan appropriately:
- Sample Continuing Power of Attorney for Property Excluding Law Practice
- Sample Continuing Power of Attorney for Property for Law Practice
- Sample Direction for the Release of the Power of Attorney for Property for Law Practice Document
- Sample Last Will and Testament Clauses
- Sample Law Practice Coverage Agreement Between the Planning Lawyer and the Replacement Lawyer
- Planning Lawyer: Steps For Managing Your Law Practice to Facilitate the Task of the Replacement Lawyer
- Checklist for the Replacement Lawyer Who Takes Over the Law Practice of another Lawyer
- Practice Tips – Preparation of a Law Office Procedural Manual
- Checklist of Issues to Consider when Preparing Continuing Power of Attorney for Property/Documents
- Checklist of Issues to Consider when Preparing Wills
- Article entitled “Preparing for the Death and Disability of a Law Partner or Shareholder”
The Law Society also developed a companion webinar on this topic, the Contingency Planning webcast.
A number of other relevant practice resources are linked from the Contingency Planning for Lawyers’ landing page.
For assistance interpreting the Rules of Professional Conduct or understanding other practice management obligations, please contact the Practice Management Helpline at 416-947-3315 or 1-800-668-7380, ext 3315.
Visit the Your Practice section of the Law Society Gazette for Rules Recap: quarterly updates of Law Society rule and by-law amendments.
Judicial Vacancies - Ontario
The Government of Canada has announced reforms to the judicial appointments process which will make the process more transparent, accountable and reflective of the diversity of Canadian society. As a result of these changes, all interested candidates must submit their applications pursuant to the new rules and using the new forms. Pre-existing judicial pools were disbanded as of October 20, 2016.
There will be seventeen (17) federal judicial vacancies in Ontario. The locations of these positions are subject to change at the discretion of Chief Justice Smith:
- Four (4) vacancies for the Court of Appeal in Toronto;
- Twelve (12) vacancies for the Superior Court of Justice;
- Five (5) in Toronto;
- One (1) in the Central West Region (Brampton);
- One (1) in the East Region (Kingston);
- One (1) in the East Region (Thunder Bay);
- Three (3) in the East Region (Ottawa);
- One (1) in the Central West Region (Milton); and
- One (1) vacancy for the Superior Court of Justice – Family Court in the East Region (Ottawa).
If you would like further information, please consult the website of Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs at http://www.fja-cmf.gc.ca/home-accueil/index-eng.html.
Coach and Advisor Network
Are you ready to take charge of your professional development? The Coach and Advisor Network (CAN) provides lawyers and paralegals with access to shorter-term, outcome-oriented relationships with Coaches and Advisors drawn from the professions. Coaches support the implementation of best practices and Advisors assist with substantive and procedural law inquiries on client files.
Do you have experience and expertise in family law, real estate law or wills, estates and trusts law? CAN is actively recruiting Coaches and Advisors who have experience in these areas of law.
Would you be willing to coach other lawyers or paralegals about opening your own practice, managing practice finances or using technology in the practice? CAN is seeking more Coaches who are willing to coach other lawyers and paralegals about these topics.
Apply to be a Coach, an Advisor or both for the Coach and Advisor Network.
Law Society Referral Service
We encourage and welcome all lawyers and paralegals to apply to join the Law Society Referral Service for 2017. It helps to give back to the community, expand your profile and potentially generate more clients for you. You may now apply to join the service through your LSUC Portal account.
For licensees who were members of the service in 2016, your membership was automatically renewed. You will find an invoice posted in your Portal account. The annual membership fee is $282.50 and is due on January 31, 2017. Unless you cancel your membership, you will be expected to pay the invoice. We appreciate your support of our service.
2016 Annual Reports
2016 Annual Reports are available for filing through the LSUC Portal and are due by March 31, 2017. Licensees who fail to file their Annual Report by May 30, 2017 will be charged a $100 late filing fee and will be subject to administrative suspension.
January 25 - Last day to enrol in Annual Pre-Authorized Payment Plan (Annual PAP) for annual fee. New this year, licensees registering for the Annual PAP will be eligible for a discount of up to $50 on their 2017 annual fee. The discount will be pro-rated according to the licensee’s fee category. Register for the Annual PAP via your LSUC Portal account. There is no administration fee for this payment option.
January 31 - 2016 Affiliation Report due.
January 31 - 2016 Multi-Discipline Partnership Report due.
January 31 - Certified Specialist annual fee and annual certification report due. Failure to submit report and payment by this date will result in revocation of certification.
January 31 - Law Society Referral Service subscription fees due.
January 31 - LAWPRO 2016 Fourth Quarter Real Estate and Civil Litigation Levy Surcharge filings and applicable payments due.
February 1 - Annual Pre-Authorized Payment Plan (Annual PAP) withdrawal date.
February 7 - LAWPRO Lump Sum Payment Discount Deadline. Full payment of the 2017 premium by cheque or pre-authorized lump sum payment dated and received on or before this date will qualify for a $50 per lawyer discount.
February 23 - Convocation - check this month's web page for the link to online viewing of Convocation and the archived webcast.
February 28 - Last day to enrol in Monthly Pre-Authorized Payment Plan (Monthly PAP) for annual fee. There is an $80 (including HST) administration fee for this payment option.