Notice to the Profession
April 27, 2020

Modernizing Law Society Tribunal hearings

To ensure that the work of the Tribunal continues in light of the COVID-19 health emergency, President Craig Ferris, QC has issued a Practice Direction that gives guidance on conducting hearings and reviews using written submissions, oral hearing by teleconference and oral hearing by video conference as alternatives to in-person hearings. The Direction will remain in effect until further notice. Further information is available in the full Practice Direction.

CRT COVID-19 response plan

The Civil Resolution Tribunal is open and operating normally during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Ministerial Order suspending limitation periods for commencing proceedings in court do not apply to the CRT, although under the order the CRT may waive, suspend or expend a mandatory time period, including the limitation period and the 28-day deadline to file a notice of objection to a CRT small claims decision. Further information about the CRT’s COVID-19 response plan is on the CRT website.

BCICAC COVID-19 response

The British Columbia International Commercial Arbitration Centre is open for normal operations. Current arbitration cases continue to be administered in the ordinary course, and new cases are being accepted for administration. Further information about the BCICAC may be found here.

Mediate BC quarantine conflict resolution service

Roster Mediators from across BC are offering their services at significantly discounted rates for resolving conflicts arising from quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. More information about the Quarantine Resolution Service may be found on Mediate BC’s website.

Health resources to help lawyers manage the impacts of COVID-19

A reminder that there are resources available to support lawyers who are facing the health and social impacts of social isolation and physical distancing. 

The Lawyers Assistance Program remains open and continues to meet with clients remotely. More information about LAP’s services is available on its website, or you may contact them by phone at 604.685.2171 or 1.888.685.2171. 

LifeWorks, an employee assistance program funded by the Law Society, recently enhanced its COVID-19 related resources, including counselling, articles and webinars that are available to lawyers and their immediate families. 

As well, the Canadian Mental Health Association has links to information and resources on a dedicated COVID-19 web page.