Notice to the Profession
May 22, 2020

Update regarding remotely executed Enduring Powers of Attorney and the LTSA

Questions have been asked about whether an EPOA that has been witnessed remotely will be accepted by the Land Title and Survey Authority. The LTSA has issued Practice Bulletin 01-20, which states that if an EPOA is signed and witnessed by a BC lawyer in accordance with Ministerial Order No. M162, a statement to that effect must be contained in the EPOA and, in order to meet the Part 5 requirements under the Land Title Act, a section 49 affidavit must also be included with your land title application explaining the circumstances. For more information, please consult the LTSA website.

ICYMI: WorkSafeBC protocols for office workplaces

As lawyers are thinking about returning to their office workplaces, WorkSafeBC has issued guidance for law firms and other offices. This includes directions on how to develop a COVID-19 Safety Plan that outlines the policies, guidelines and procedures for reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission in the office. WorkSafeBC has also developed protocols for the safe return to office workplaces that cover building access, workplace operations, workstations, communal spaces, outside visitors, deliveries, transportation to work and elevator use. Further information is available on the WorkSafeBC website.

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

Just as working remotely for an extended period of time can put a strain on our health, returning to the office may trigger stress and anxiety. Resources and support are available. The Lawyers Assistance Program remains open and continues to meet with clients remotely. To learn more, check LAP’s website or contact them by phone at 604.685.2171 or 1.888.685.2171. LifeWorks is also available 24/7 online to assist you with a range of health, financial and other concerns. See their enhanced COVID-19 related resources, including counselling, articles and webinars that are available to lawyers and their immediate families. The Canadian Mental Health Association has links to information and resources on a dedicated COVID-19 web page, including tips for employers and employees during these challenging times. As well, the BC Psychological Association is offering help for any BC resident who is experiencing stress, anxiety or uncertainty due to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, visit the BCPA website.