Complaints, Lawyer Discipline and Public Hearings

 

Citation issued:  January 7, 2019; amended May 24, 2019

James Edward Turner

Citations are authorized by the Law Society of BC's Discipline Committee and list allegations against a lawyer that will be considered at a discipline hearing. Please note that allegations in a citation are unproven until a discipline hearing panel has determined their validity.

Nature of conduct to be inquired into:

1.  In approximately December 2017, in the course of acting for your client SE in connection with a labour market impact assessment application, you represented to your client that you had not heard from Employment and Social Development Canada ("ESDC") which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had not submitted the application to ESDC, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

2.  Between approximately February 2017 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client SE in connection with a labour market impact assessment application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to keep your client reasonably informed about the status of the application;

(b)  failing to submit the application to Employment and Social Development Canada or explain to your client why it was not advisable to do so;

(c)  failing to ensure the work necessary to complete the application was done in a timely manner; and

(d)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client about your failure to submit the application.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

3.  Between approximately June 2017 and July 2017, in the course of acting for your client OO in connection with a post-graduate work permit application, you made representations to your client about the status of his application which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, in one or more of the following communications with your client:

(a)  in or about June 2017, you stated that you had not heard anything from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") about your client’s application when you knew the application had been rejected;

(b)  in or about June 2017, you stated that you would submit a "case specific enquiry" in regard to his application when you knew that no application had been submitted and the "case specific enquiry" would have no purpose; and

(c)  in or about July 2017, you stated that you had not received a letter from IRCC rejecting your client’s application, when you knew that statement was untrue.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

4.  Between approximately March 2017 and September 2017, in the course of acting for your client OO in connection with a post-graduation work permit application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to ensure that the work necessary to complete the post-graduate work permit application was done in a timely manner;

(b)  on or about April 28, 2017, submitting an incomplete and unsigned paper post-graduate work permit application for your client, which you knew or ought to have known would be rejected by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC");

(c)  on or about May 4, 2017, failing to pay the required application fee to IRCC when submitting an online post-graduate work permit application;

(d)  in or about July and August 2017, failing to submit a restoration of status application for your client in a timely manner;

(e)  failing to keep your client reasonably informed about the status of the post-graduate work permit applications and restoration of status application; and

(f)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client about IRCC’s rejection of his post-graduate work permit applications.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

5.  On or about December 4, 2017, in the course of acting for your client MM in connection with a study permit application, you represented to your client that you had not heard from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") about his application, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had received a refusal letter from IRCC, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

6.  Between approximately November 2016 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client AA in connection with a labour market impact assessment application and a work permit extension application, you made representations to your client about the status of his applications which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, including in one or both of the following communications with your client:

(a)  in or about November 2016, you stated you had not heard anything from Employment and Social Development Canada ("ESDC") and/or Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") about his applications when you knew that they had not been submitted; and

(b)  by email dated December 12, 2016, you informed your client that you had not yet heard anything from ESDC and/or IRCC about his applications but did "not expect to because the processing times are about three and a half months" when you knew those processing times did not apply as you had not submitted the applications.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

7.  On approximately November 25, 2016 and January 23, 2017, in the course of acting for your client AA in connection with a work permit extension application, you made representations in letters to the Medical Services Plan that you had submitted an extension of status application for your client resulting in his having implied status in Canada, and that you had attached documentation in purported support of your representations, both of which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading as you had not submitted your client’s application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

8.  Between approximately November 2016 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client AA in connection with a labour market impact assessment application ("LMIA") and a work permit extension application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to submit your client’s LMIA application with Economic and Social Development Canada;

(b)  failing to submit your client’s application to extend his status in Canada; and

(c)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client about the status of his applications.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

9.  Between approximately June 2012 and August 2016, in the course of acting for your clients KH and RH in connection with their permanent residence application, you made representations to your clients that you had submitted their application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading as you had not submitted their application with IRCC, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

10.  Between approximately 2015 and December 2016, in the course of acting for your client KH in connection with a work permit extension application, you failed to honestly and candidly advise your client that his application had been refused, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

11.  In the course of acting for your clients KH and RH in connection with their work permit extension applications, you made representations in letters to the Medical Services Plan ("MSP") that you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, in one or both of the following instances:

(a)  in a letter dated May 29, 2014, you represented to MSP that you had submitted a permanent resident application to IRCC for your clients, and you attached documentation in purported support of your representation, when you knew that the representation was false or misleading because you knew that you had not submitted your clients' application to IRCC; and

(b)  in a letter dated July 28, 2016, you represented to MSP that your clients had inplied status in Canada because work permit extension applications had been submitted to IRCC, when you knew that the representation was false or misleading because you knew that your clients' work permit applications had been refused and that they no longer had implied status in Canada.

This conduct constitutes professioinal misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

12.  On approximately July 28, 2016, in the course of acting for your client KH in connection with a permanent residence application, you made a representation in a letter to the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia that you had submitted a permanent residence application for your client and you attached documentation in purported support of your representation, both of which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading, as you had not submitted his application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

13.  On approximately August 10, 2016, in the course of acting for your clients KH and RH in connection with their permanent residence application, you made a representation in a letter to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") that you had never received a reply to purported work permit extension applications and could discover no information about them until last summer, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had not submitted the work permit extension applications with IRCC, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

14.  Between approximately June 2012 and August 2016, in the course of acting for your clients KH and RH in connection with their permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer by failing to submit your clients’ application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada in a timely manner, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

15.  Between approximately June 2017 and February 2018, in the course of acting for your client EP in connection with a sponsorship application, you represented to your client that you had not heard from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had received a letter from IRCC returning the application, or you failed to be honest and candid with your client about the status of her application, or both, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

16.  Between approximately the fall of 2015 and June 2016, in the course of acting for your client JA in connection with a permanent residence application, you made representations to your client that you had submitted his application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading as you had not done so, or you failed to be honest and candid with your client about the status of his application, or both, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

17.  Between approximately December 2015 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client JA in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer by failing to submit your client’s application in a timely manner or at all, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

18.  Between approximately June 2016 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client SY in connection with a permanent residence application, you made representations that you had submitted your client’s application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC"), which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading as you had not submitted his application, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, including in one or both of the following communications with your client:

(a)  in or about June 2016, you represented that you had submitted your client’s application and provided a draft letter to IRCC in purported support of your representation, when you knew or ought to have known that the application had not been submitted and the letter had not been sent; and

(b)  in or about December 2017, you represented that your client’s application had been submitted and returned when you knew or ought to have known that the representation was not true as you had not submitted the application.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

19.  Between approximately June 2016 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client SY in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer by failing to submit the application for permanent residence, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, and 3.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

20.  In approximately the spring of 2015, in the course of acting for your client SM in connection with a work permit extension application, you represented to your client that you had not heard from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") about her application, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had received a refusal letter from IRCC, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

21.  On approximately May 11, 2015 and June 21, 2015, in the course of acting for your client SM in connection with a work permit extension application, you made representations in letters to the Medical Services Plan that your client had implied status in Canada, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you knew that your client’s application had been refused, and that she did not have implied status in Canada, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

22.  On approximately November 13, 2015 and July 11, 2017, in the course of acting for your client SM in connection with a work permit extension application, you made representations in letters to the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia that your client was a holder of a work permit or that she was present in Canada with status, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you knew that her work permit had expired and her work permit extension application had been refused, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

23.  On approximately July 11, 2017, in the course of acting for your client SM in connection with a work permit extension application, you made a representation in a letter to the High Commission of Canada in the United Kingdom that your client had applied for a work permit but had never received a reply, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you knew that her application had been refused, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

24.  Between approximately December 2016 and February 9, 2017, in the course of acting for your client SM in connection with a labour market impact assessment application, you made representations in your client’s submitted application with Employment and Social Development Canada that your client had status in Canada, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you knew that she did not have status, contrary to rule 2.2-1 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

25.  Between approximately October 2017 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your clients EA and PM in connection with a permanent residence application, you made representations to your clients that you had not heard from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada ("IRCC") about their updated application, which you knew or ought to have known were false or misleading as you had not yet submitted documents requested by IRCC, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

26.  Between approximately October 2017 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your clients EA and PM in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by failing to ensure that the work necessary to satisfy a request for information from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada was done in a timely manner, or by failing to submit the requested information.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

27.  Between approximately June 2016 and December 2017, in the course of acting for your client RM in connection with a criminal rehabilitation application, you failed to honestly and candidly advise your client that his application had been refused, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

28.  In approximately December 2017, in the course of acting for your client KM in connection with a permanent residence application, you represented to your client that his application had been returned by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and needed to be re-submitted, which you knew or ought to have known was false or misleading as you had not submitted the application, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

29.  Between approximately 2016 and March 2018, in the course of acting for your client KM in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to keep your client reasonably informed about the status of his application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada;

(b)  failing to submit your client’s application in a timely manner; and

(c)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client that his application had not been submitted.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

30.  Between approximately February 2017 and March 2018, in the course of acting for your client SL in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client that her application had been returned on two occasions as incomplete; and

(b)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client about the reason you were requesting new photographs.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

31.  Between approximately October 2016 and November 2017, in the course of acting for your client NA in connection with a permanent residence application, you made representations to your client that you had not heard from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada about his application, which you knew were false or misleading as you knew that his application had been returned, contrary to one or both of rules 2.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

32.  Between approximately July 2015 and November 2017, in the course of acting for your client NA in connection with a permanent residence application, you failed to provide the quality of service required of a competent lawyer, contrary to one or more of rules 2.2-1, 3.1-2, 3.2-1 and 3.2-2 of the Code of Professional Conduct for British Columbia, by doing one or more of the following:

(a)  failing to keep your client reasonably informed about the status of his application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada;

(b)  failing to submit your client’s application in a timely manner; and

(c)  failing to honestly and candidly advise your client that his application had been returned.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to s. 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.