News Release
May 27, 2021

A hearing panel of the Law Society Tribunal has accepted a joint submission of the Law Society and Stephen Bronstein that Bronstein be suspended for one month, he not act as counsel or agent for any “Sixties Scoop” claimants, and he be referred to a Law Society practice review of files opened since January 1, 2017.

Bronstein admitted to professional misconduct by failing to adequately investigate his contractor’s background before allowing him to work with and have unsupervised access to Bronstein’s residential school survivor clients who were applying for financial compensation under the Independent Assessment Process, and by failing to investigate adequately or address complaints that the contractor was demanding a portion of clients’ awards.

Bronstein also admitted to providing inadequate service to 17 clients by failing to document certain important communications properly, not replying to some communications, failing to inform clients regularly and take their instructions, and by failing to advance some of their claims in a timely manner. He admitted to misconduct in his handling of declarations signed by the clients, by directing staff to remove the declarations clients signed on their original Independent Assessment Process application forms and attaching the declarations to revised forms which clients approved over the telephone without seeing them.

The chair of the hearing panel wrote a dissenting opinion, finding that the proposed disciplinary action was grossly inadequate and should have been rejected. In her view, if the majority had rejected the proposed sanctions and ordered the matter proceed to a hearing, the Law Society would have elicited public confidence in its regulatory process. The chair, in her written reasons, made recommendations she believes would assist the Law Society in enabling the future participation of vulnerable and marginalized complainants in its regulatory process.

The majority would have agreed with the dissenting panel member that a one month suspension fell short of a fair and reasonable range of acceptable discipline outcomes, given the nature of the misconduct viewed in proper historical, social and legal context, but was also of the view there was a real possibility that rejecting the proposed resolution would result in the Bronstein facing no discipline at all for his misconduct. As a result, the majority accepted Bronstein’s admission of professional misconduct and the penalty proposed jointly by Bronstein and the Law Society.

Read the decision of the hearing panel here.


For further information contact:

Jason Kuzminski
Communications Director