E-Brief: May 2016

Ardith Walkem addresses Benchers on the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, its calls to action and Indigenous laws

On Friday, May 6, the Benchers heard from Ardith Walkem, Indigenous lawyer and a member of the Nlaka'pamux Nation, about the history and the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Walkem spoke about three elements of the Commission's calls to action: 1) to be aware of the history of residential schools and the ongoing harms to Indigenous peoples, 2) to search within ourselves (both individually and institutionally) and ask how we are complicit, and 3) to make a commitment to act. She also stressed the need for the legal profession to make space for the recognition of Indigenous laws.

Bencher Daniel Smith sworn in

Appointed Bencher Daniel Smith was sworn in at the May 6 Bencher meeting. To read more about Smith, visit our website.

The Law Society congratulates winner and runner-up of the secondary school Magna Carta essay contest

The Law Society congratulates essay contest winner Han Wei (Helen) Luo, Law 12 student from Hugh McRoberts Secondary School in Richmond, and runner-up Anushka Kurian, Law 12 student from Hugh Boyd Secondary School in Richmond, for their exemplary essays on the topic of "Magna Carta and its relevance to Canada in the 21st Century." The full essays can be read on the Law Society's website.

Amendments to the Law Society Rules

The Benchers have approved amendments to Law Society Rules 5-15(3), 5-24.1 and 5-25(9) to reflect that the party initiating a review of a hearing decision is responsible for producing the record on which the review is based. The amended rules can be viewed online.

Consultation on transferring lawyer rules

The Ethics Committee is seeking input from members of the profession and other interested persons regarding draft changes to the transferring lawyer rules in the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia (rules 3.4-17 to 3.4-26 and Appendix D). To review the draft amendments, the consultation memorandum and its attachments, view the highlight on the website. Please send your comments to Lance Cooke at lcooke@lsbc.org by June 16. All responses will be considered by the Ethics Committee.

Articling offers by downtown Vancouver firms to stay open to August 12

All offers of articling positions made this year by law firms with offices in downtown Vancouver (defined as the area west of Carrall Street and north of False Creek) must remain open until 8 am on Friday, August 12, 2016. The deadline is set by the Credentials Committee under Rule 2-58, and applies to offers made to both first and second-year law students. The deadline does not affect offers made to third-year law students or offers of summer positions (temporary articles). For more information, read the highlight on the website.

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.

Collect and report citizenship information on property transfer tax returns

The BC Ministry of Finance has issued a tax information sheet on collecting citizenship information to be used by the legal profession and conveyancers who file property transfer tax (PTT) returns at the Land Title Office. For more information, visit the ministry's website.

Land Title and Survey Authority issues practice bulletin regarding air space plans

The Land Title and Survey Authority of BC has issued Practice Bulletin 01-16 Subdivision of Air Space Parcels to address the requests from lawyers and land surveyors for clarification of the registrar's requirements with respect to air space plans. For more information, visit the LTSA website.

From the courts

Supreme Court Family Rule 2-1.2 provides that an arbitration award in a family law proceeding may be filed in the court registry and s. 29 of the Arbitration Act provides that an arbitration award may be enforced in the same manner as a judgment or order of the court. Chief Justice Hinkson suggests that the court and parties would be well served if those who act as family arbitrators adopt a practice of including as part of their award, a summary of the award in a form akin to an order that can readily be filed in the registry.

The Supreme Court of BC has issued PD-50 - Masters' Jurisdiction, which sets out the matters in which a master is not to exercise jurisdiction and provides guidelines as to the matters in which a master does have jurisdiction. The direction takes effect on May 15, 2016 and replaces PD-42 - Masters' Jurisdiction (March 25, 2013).

The Court of Appeal has issued a new practice note concerning the use of CDs and DVDs within or accompanying appeal books.

The Court of Appeal has revised the practice directive concerning extradition appeals, including the model order providing for the continuation of bail without another appearance once a committal order is made.

The Federal Court has issued the third edition of the Practice Guidelines for Aboriginal Law Proceedings, which are available on the Federal Court website.

Send your comments or questions to communications@lsbc.org.