By: Kathryn Marshall
In follow up to our popular listing of the top law twitter accounts in Ontario, Lawsome has put together this handy list of the top law twitter accounts in Alberta for all our western readers. Stay tuned for the upcoming British Columbia list!
- @UofALawFaculty University of Alberta Faculty of Law
- @AlbertaJSG Alberta Justice and Solicitor General
- @LawDeanHolloway University of Calgary Law Dean
- @UCalgaryLaw University of Calgary Faculty of Law
- @theLLivingstone Laurie Livingstone, Calgary lawyer
- @ABlawg The University of Calgary Faculty of Law blog
- @ThatLawyerGuy Andrew Cao, Edmonton Lawyer
- @StevenDollansky Steven Dollansky, Edmonton Lawyer
- @immalawyercanada Raj Sharma, Calgary immigration lawyer
- @woolleylaw Alice Wooley, Professor at University of Calgary Faculty of Law
- @ts_tidbits Theresa Yukerwich, Calgary Lawyer and blogger
- @altalawreview Alberta Law Review – Published by the law students at U of A and U of C
- @petersankoff Peter Sankoff, Professor at U of A Faculty of Law
- @ABlawreform Alberta Law Reform Institute
- @Dave_Khan David Khan, Calgary Aboriginal law lawyer
- @JonathanDenisAB: Jonathan Denis, Calgary lawyer and former AB Attorney General, Solicitor General
- @getmorevoteles: Leslie Stitt, Lawyer
- @CBCMeg Megan Grant, Calgary reporter with focus on court and crime
- @ZhivovLaw Vladimir Zhivov, Personal Injury lawyer in Calgary
- @AirdrieRob Rob Anderson, Lawyer and former MLA
by: Kathryn Marshall
These days, you don’t just need to rely on legal publications to get your law news. There are plenty of informal sources too, like social media. Lawsome has compiled this handy list of the top Ontario law twitter accounts to follow to get the latest law news at your fingertips:
- Law Times: @LawTimes (Ontario legal news online publication)
- Obiter Dicta: @obiterdictaoz (Osgoode Hall student newspaper)
- Precedent Magazine: @PrecedentMag (Toronto lifestyle magazine for lawyers)
- Ultra Vires: @UltraVires (Student newspaper for @UTLaw)
- Ontario Bar Association: @OBAToday
- Toronto Lawyers Association: @TLAVoice
- Law Society Upper Canada: @LawsocietyLSUC
- Brenda Hollingsworth: @OttawaLawyers (Ottawa personal injury lawyer)
- Mr. Toronto Lawyer: @selwynpieters (Human rights and civil litigator)
- Chantal Desloges: @Twimmigration (Toronto Immigration Lawyer)
- Omar HaRedeye: @OmarHaRedeye (Toronto Lawyer and legal academic)
- Daniel Brown: @DanielBrownLaw (Toronto Criminal Defense Lawyer)
- Sean Robichaud: @SeanRobichaud (Toronto criminal defense lawyer)
- Anjli Patel: @bluechipfashion (Toronto Fashion Lawyer)
- Melissa Kluger: @MelissaKluger (Lawyer and publisher of Precedent Magazine and Precedent A-List)
- Jeff Gray: @jeffreybgray (Law Reporter, Globe and Mail)
- Lisa Feldstein: @lisaFeldstein (Ontario health Lawyer with focus on family health law)
- Garry J. Wise: @wiselaw (Toronto lawyer- employment and family law)
- Andrew Mercer: @AndrewLMercer (Toronto insurance lawyer and author)
- Yours truly, Kathryn Marshall: KVMarshall (Lawyer and Columnist – creator of Lawsome.ca)
By: Kathryn Marshall
Contingency fee arrangements, a.ka. the lawyer only gets paid if the legal action is successful, are an important part of access to justice. They allow people to hire a lawyer when they do not have the funds in hand to pay the retainers and fees normally required by lawyers. These types are payment arrangements are very common in civil litigation such as personal injury suits where successful litigants are awarded damages.
However, in family law in Ontario, contingency fee payment agreements are not permitted (also the case in criminal law matters). The reasoning behind this is explained by Brendan Crawley, spokesperson for the Ministry of the Attorney General, who told the Toronto Star that the ban is in place to prevent “inappropriate share of often scarce family resources.”
Unlike in personal injury matters, the pool of money that a lawyer would get paid from in a family law contingency agreement would be the families’ own nest egg. Understandably, this creates a great deal of concern, especially where there are children and other dependents involved.
However, according to lawyer Stephen Durbin from Durbin & Associates, the ban is prejudicial to stay at home moms who may not have the same resources as their ex-partners to pay for family legal proceedings. The result can often be that women are forced to represent themselves in court, making it very difficult for them.
Ontario is the only jurisdiction in Canada with this ban, and Durbin, along with a group of other Ontario lawyers, have written a letter to the Ontario Government asking that the ban be lifted.
Their hope is to level the playing field and allow women greater access to justice when going through a family legal matter.
In some jurisdictions such as British Columbia where contingency fee arrangements in family law are permitted, court approval must first be granted to have this type of arrangement. Perhaps Ontario should institute the same system. This would allow for greater access to justice for all while also adding a level of protection to ensure these types of fee arrangements are not used inappropriately.