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TheScientist101 last won the day on April 9

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  1. There will be a lot of good legal business in this area (heck, there already is), not just regarding criminality or international legal implications, but also in IP, LE and commercial law. It's a great opportunity for you guys to take the course.
  2. I totally agree that Property should be a full year course - it is a lot to cram into the fall term. I'm not sure that removing ADR is the answer though - the problem is that negotiation is a huge part of most practices so developing those skills are essential (not to mention the importance of the professional responsibility modules). J-term in general - I see valuable arguments on both sides. It's good because it allows for visiting professors to come and teach a course (i.e. it's easier for a professor to come and teach for 3 weeks rather than 3 months). I also think it is very helpful for some of the mooting courses (basically just take January to prepare you ass off). However, cramming a course into 3 weeks can be very, very difficult (especially if it involves writing a paper - I remember I did a DRP to fulfill my major paper requirement over those three weeks and wow, that was a lot.) I think over-all the school would be better off to nix it, and take out public law in first year and replace it with Conlaw 1 in the first semester. In my year Public law was an absolute waste - we learned all of those principles in the crim introductory lecture and they were just reiterated in ConLaw 1. That way you could extend property to a full year course and move ADR so it was spread out over an entire winter term. I know there was talk of this when i was there, not sure if any of those discussions have come to fruition.
  3. Billable Hours v Actual Hours

    It depends entirely on the task you're doing. In my practice a lot of what I'm doing is billable - so if I work a 9 or 10 hour day, chances are I've been able to bill 7-8 hours. Heck, if I don't take any washroom breaks and I eat at my desk I may be able to bill almost all of it (especially if I'm doing something like researching and drafting a memo or reviewing a shit-tonne of prior art for upcoming cross examinations etc.). My best day was a 14 hour billable day (I think I was in the office for 17 that day) - that is an outlier though - an average for me is about 7. A couple of times I've been in the office for 10 hours but was only able to bill 2-3 of them. This often happens if I'm particularly distracted, if I'm doing more clerical-type work that I know the client won't pay for or if I'm doing obvious non-billable stuff (work lunch, presentations, mentoring meetings etc.)
  4. Gift for principal at the end of articling?

    This was exactly how it was for me. At my firm none of the students gave principles (or mentors - official or unofficial) gifts.
  5. Tips on Being a Great Summer Student

    mo money mo drinkin.
  6. Tips on Being a Great Summer Student

    Agreed, especially because in my experience I've observed the level of drunkenness among partners to be far more than that among associates (not sure if that's a good thing...)
  7. Tips on Being a Great Summer Student

    Grammatical mistakes aren't as bad hahaha - definitely not intentional - I was tempted to edit, but it's so funny that I'm just going to leave it as an example of why it's important to sleep on things before submitting them.
  8. Tips on Being a Great Summer Student

    I was asked to provide tips on being a great summer student at a large firm via PM. I thought that others on the forum could also make valuable contributions to the "tips" and that the information could be of value to the LS.ca community at large (even though there are many threads already on the topic). My top tips to being a great summer student are: 1. Take notes when you're given instructions - seriously, walk around everywhere with a note pad and pen so that if anyone grabs you and starts giving you instructions you can immediately write them down. There were times (especially as a first year summer student) when I had to write down instructions phonetically because I had no idea what the heck I was being asked to do and if i didn't have a note pad with me I would have been screwed. 2. when you are taking your instructions from a lawyer who you've never done work for, ask the important questions: what file number is this being billed to? how much time should i aim to spend on it? do you want this in memo form? do you want the cases printed and highlighted or will electronic copies be fine? Large firms also have data bases with loads of precedents so whenever I was given a task for a lawyer I never worked for I always went into the data bases to see how that lawyer liked their memos to be set up - I also spoke to Junior associates or lingering articling students for advice regarding how to approach certain tasks for certain lawyers. 3. Save all of your questions for one meeting rather than asking them as they come up. What I mean by this is once you get your instructions, go away and do your task. As you are doing the task you may have some clarification questions, write them down in a coherent manner and then, when you absolutely cannot do anything more, go and ask them all in one shot. Don't go and bug the instructing lawyer every time a question comes up - you'll be perceived as annoying and incompetent. 4. Always attach a "research trail" at the end of any task you've been given. It's important so the lawyer knows what you have done (and what you haven't done) when completing your research. It's also the best way for you to learn how to improve. 5. I always try to finish the task the night before it's due, sleep on it, and then have a fresh read of a hard copy the day I submit it. Make sure you proof read - nothing is worse then spelling mistakes. 6. Always ask for feedback on the tasks you've been given, whether it's a week or two weeks after you've submitted it, if you don't hear back, pop your head in and ask if they've had a chance to look at it and if they have any suggestions for improvement. 7. Work as a team with your fellow students. Competition between students is really pointless - it just makes you all look bad. The lawyers want to see you getting a long well with people. Keep your speech positive and be kind to everyone you encounter. 8. Be the one the lawyers can depend on. If they are staying late in the office, you should pop your head in and ask if there is anything you can do to help. If they ask you to do something urgently and it means you have to cancel your plans - do it, stay and go the extra mile. 9. If you have nothing to do, go around to the lawyers and tell them you have capacity to take on tasks - even as a student you need to learn how to drum up work. 10. No task is beneath you. You are the guy that will work the weekend in the copy room putting together evidence books for upcoming trial. You are also the guy to proof read factums, do legal research and draft pleadings. If it needs to be done, volunteer to do it and be happy about it (no one likes a complainer). 11. be nice to your support staff. Tell them how thankful you are for their assistance, ask them for help when you need it and, every once and a while, bring them baked goods Good luck to all who will be starting next month!
  9. You want to litigate? choose Ottawa Law.

    When I first read it I thought "man this is very focused on Prof. Daimsis" - but I guess that is well deserved because he is an excellent coach and professor. I would also like to note that there are several amazing coaches at Ottawa U and many (if not all) of its moot teams have resounding success.
  10. Advice on a Strange Articling Offer I Received

    Yeah I agree with @TKNumber3, I know that during my articles I wasn't particularly close to my principle nor did I really ever do work for them (if I did it was very minor stuff). My real experience came from other lawyers in the office that were practicing in areas in which i was more interested. You will still garner valuable experience so long as there are competent lawyers in your office that can supervise and mentor you.
  11. You want to litigate? choose Ottawa Law.

    I know I'm resurrecting an old thread (which I started years ago), however I thought it was appropriate in light of the recent article put out by the Globe and Mail (posted below). I am happy that the excellent mooting program at Ottawa U is finally getting some well-deserved attention. https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-university-of-ottawas-mooting-team-storms-the-international-stage/?cmpid=rss&click=sf_globe
  12. Average Salary of First Year Call in Ottawa

    Salary for first year calls at large full service firms in Ottawa is usually $70K with a bump to $75K in January. Most of these are in a lock-step for the first 5 years - generally with about a $10K increase every year. I know of one firm in Ottawa that starts their first year calls at $90K and another that starts them at $100K. I've only ever discussed salary with one colleague at a medium size firm (i.e 15 lawyers) and they start their first years at $75K. I have never heard of anyone being paid less than $60K as a first year, but as indicated above, I'm sure it happens at smaller firms.
  13. Good review and I agree with all of your points except this one. When you start working at a law firm you will quickly learn that the most important course you will ever take is Legal Research. In fact, I think it should be a full 3 credit course rather than a 1. I have sent multiple thank you emails to Prof. Mallet for that course - it saved me so. many. times. Save your notes - one day you will discover how valuable they are.
  14. My biggest fear: not hired back

    OP this is great advice, especially because it's always better to look for a job when you have a job. Even if you want to practice in a super niche area you should still try and get broad experience because it will help you to be hired back. If you're hired back in your "less-than-ideal" practice area just use that opportunity as a stepping stone to develop valuable translational skills while you look for a position in your ideal area.
  15. My biggest fear: not hired back

    I understand this fear. I remember interviewing at the firm I summered and articled at - I hit it off immediately with the articling student who gave me the tour of the firm. I remember being devastated when I returned the firm to begin my summer term and I found out that he wasn't hired back. All I could think about was how scary that must have been for him - for myself, that was my "worst case" scenario. I think my biggest regret about my summering and articles is that I spent so much time obsessing over hire-back. Man what a waste of time (and anxiety). You see - not being hired back was my ultimate fear, I had no idea how I would deal with such a scenario - but it turns out that when I didn't get hired back the world kept revolving - and I was... fine. Absolutely fine. I mean, it's not like I wasn't hired back because I was "bad" - the firm just didn't have a junior spot in the area that I wanted to practice. I received glowing recommendation letters and senior partners offered to put in calls for me to my firms of choice. Within 1 month of that decision being made I was interviewing at multiple firms on Bay street - I landed a job at an incredible firm the week before my articling term finished. And - this is the most important part - I am SO FREAKING HAPPY where I am! It is the perfect fit for me. I am much happier here than I think I would have ever been at the firm I wanted so desperately to hire me back. During your articles focus on 2 things - learning as much as you possibly can and making sure you have a rock solid reputation. If you do those that you'll be fine (in fact, you'll probably be way more than fine).