E-Brief: April 2016

2015 Report on Performance and audited financial statements available

The Law Society's 2015 Report on Performance and audited financial statements are now available online. Our annual report provides a progress update on strategic initiatives in the first year of our 2015-2017 Strategic Plan. For the ninth year, we also review key performance measures for our core regulatory functions to evaluate the overall effectiveness of Law Society programs. These performance measures form a critical part of our regulatory transparency, informing the public, government, the media and the legal community about how we are meeting our regulatory obligations.

Daniel Smith appointed as Law Society Bencher

The Law Society welcomes recently appointed Bencher Daniel Smith. Smith is a citizen of the Laich Kwil Tach Nation, member of the Campbell River Indian Band in Vancouver Island and former Chief Negotiator of the Hamatla Treaty Society. He has extensive experience working with local First Nations communities, provincial, national and international Indigenous organizations and provincial and federal governments. Visit the Law Society's website for a detailed biography.

Appeal proceedings conclude in Nova Scotia Barristers' Society v. TWU

On April 6 to 8, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal heard arguments in Nova Scotia Barristers' Society v. TWU. The appeal hearing in The Law Society of BC v. TWU will be held on June 1 to 3 and the appeal hearing in The Law Society of Upper Canada v. TWU in Ontario will be held on June 6 to 8.

Benchers hear about self-represented litigants

On Friday, April 8, the Benchers heard from Jennifer Muller, a member of the Access to Justice BC executive and leadership group and the National Self-Represented Litigants Project advisory board. Muller spoke about her own experience as a self-represented litigant (SRL) and provided several suggestions for improving the experiences of SRLs, including making it easier to find lawyers willing to act under limited scope retainers.

The Law Society Award – call for nominations

Lawyers are encouraged to nominate a candidate to receive the 2016 Law Society Award. The deadline for nominations is Tuesday, May 31, 2016. The award honours the lifetime contributions of truly exceptional lawyers in BC. For more information, including how to submit a nomination, download the flyer.

Amendments to the Law Society Rules

The Benchers have approved amendments to the Law Society Rules: (1) a panel or the president may adjourn credentials and review hearings generally; and (2) a lawyer may be required to repay the Law Society for certain amounts paid under the insurance program on the lawyer's behalf. To view the amendments, visit the Law Society's website.

Real estate transactions involving assignments of contracts (flips)

Lawyers who prepare transfer documents and Property Transfer Tax forms in situations where there has been an assignment(s) of the purchase contract resulting in a final increased purchase price should consider carefully the appropriate amount to use in the Item 2b Market Value paragraph of the Form A Transfer and in the Item E portion of the Property Transfer Tax form. Most often, the total consideration paid by the Transferee is the amount that should be used.

Law Week 2016

Law Week events were held throughout BC starting April 10. The Law Society supports this Canadian Bar Association, BC Branch initiative and promoted content related to the theme of access to justice during Law Week. Follow us on Twitter to receive the latest updates.

From the courts

The Post-Consultation Memorandum on Provincial Court Policy regarding criminal court record information available through Court Services Online is now available on the Provincial Court website.


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