January 2016 Convocation


Convocation was webcast on January 28, 2016. View the archive on YouTube.

New Law Practice Coach and Advisor program approved
A new law practice coaching and advisory initiative, approved by Convocation, will assist in the development of competent legal professionals by supporting the growing need in the professions for short-term advisor supports addressing file-specific and substantive/procedural matters, and longer term coaching supports to foster best practices.

The initiative will be voluntary and will evolve over time through ongoing engagement with the profession, and co-ordination and collaboration with existing mentor and advisory service programs. To facilitate implementation, the Law Society will establish a dedicated and separate coach and advisor unit. The initiative will be open to all lawyers and paralegals, but will initially focus on communities with particular needs for support, such as new, racialized and sole- and small-firm lawyers and paralegals. All participants in the program will be eligible to claim all 12 required CPD Hours annually. Full report.

Annual General Meeting taking place May 11
The Law Society’s 2016 Annual General Meeting will take place on Wednesday, May 11 at 5:15 p.m., at Osgoode Hall, 130 Queen St. W., Toronto.

Conduct rules amended re: retired judges returning to practice
The Rules of Professional Conduct were amended to provide that lawyers who previously served as judges on the Superior Court of Justice and who return to practise and plan to appear as counsel or advocate in any court, or before an administrative board or tribunal, must now apply to the Law Society for approval. The Rules were also amended to replace the phrase “committee of Convocation appointed for the purpose” with “panel of the Hearing Division of the Law Society Tribunal” to reflect Convocation’s earlier designation for the committee. Full report.

Funding for co-ordinator for Lawyers Feed the Hungry programs approved
Convocation approved two-year funding for a fundraising and stakeholder management co-ordinator position to support Lawyers Feed the Hungry programs. The co-ordinator will provide support to programs across Ontario and assist the programs in becoming self-sustaining. Full report.

Human Rights Monitoring Group interventions approved

Convocation approved interventions in the following cases:
• Lawyer Pu Zhiqiang – China
• Lawyers Shalini Gera and Isha Khandelwal – India
• Lawyer Khin Khin Kyaw – Myanmar/Burma
• Lawyer Khalil Ma’touq – Syria
• Lawyer Razan Zaitouneh – Syria
• Lawyers Tran Thu Nam and Le Luan – Vietnam
• Lawyer Nguyen Van Dai – Vietnam
• Lawyer Buzurgmehr Yorov – Tajikistan
Full report.

Tribunal Model Three-Year Review Report received
Convocation received a report from the Tribunal Committee on its three-year review of the new Tribunal model, adopted in 2012. The new model included the establishment of a full-time, independent Chair and was focused on enhancing transparency and quality of adjudication, as well as improving cost effectiveness. The Committee concluded that the new model, reflecting the goals set by Convocation, is in the public interest, promotes a fair process for licensees and applicant licensees involved with it and is being well received by stakeholders. Full report.

Bencher Janis Criger was appointed to the Access to Justice Committee. Bencher Michelle Haigh was appointed to the Law Society Awards/LLD Advisory Committee.





Public Transcript


Treasurer’s Remarks

Consent Agenda – Motion

  • Confirmation of Draft Minutes of Convocation – December 4, 2015
  • Motions
    • 2016 Annual General Meeting
    • Appointments
  • Report of the Director of Professional Development and Competence – Deemed Call Candidates

Mentoring and Advisory Services Proposal Task Force Report

Audit and Finance Committee Report

Professional Regulation Committee Report

  • Proposed Amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct – Retired Judges Returning to Practice
  • For Information
    • Law Society Response to Proposed Ontario Securities Commission Policy

Tribunal Committee Report

  • Tribunal Model Three Year Review Final Report

Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee/Comité sur l’équité et les affaires autochtones Report

  • Human Rights Monitoring Group Request for Interventions
  • For Information
    • Access to Justice in French Update
    • Human Rights Monitoring Group Access to Justice Report
    • Equity Legal Education and Rule of Law Series Calendar Winter 2016 – Summer 2016

Audit and Finance Committee Report

  • Law Society Funding of Coordinator for Lawyers Feed the Hungry Programs
  • For Information
    • LAWPRO Third Quarter Financial Statements for the Nine Months Ended September 30, 2015
    • LibraryCo Inc. Third Quarter Financial Statements for the Nine Months Ended September 30, 2015


Access to Justice Committee Report

  • Update on Publications

Report from The Action Group on Access to Justice