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epeeist last won the day on January 1

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  1. Ryerson Law by 2020 - Letter of Intent

    From the first two, it seems that most of the problem is that many people go to law school with unrealistic expectations. Due in part to law schools. Just like people often enter undergrad or later grad programs with unrealistic expectations and end up tens of thousands of dollars more in debt having obtained a master's degree in the humanities that helps them not at all, or worse a doctorate, that except for the rare few who get on a tenure track, leads to the purgatory of sessional instruction, or abandoning academia and relevance of the degree for an ordinary workplace. So wouldn't the simplest, quickest first step be for Law Societies to require, for accreditation, that all law school prominently (not buried in fine print) warn people NOT to go to law school without examining the huge risks of doing so? OLSAS refuse to process applications without receiving a stat dec that the applicant is aware they will likely live and ultimately die in penury? And, given the stresses lawyers face, misery even if not in penury? Obviously (hopefully...) I'm exaggerating, but if the problem is largely people are uninformed, force them to become informed. And advertise problems with getting work if one goes overseas, etc. Fight law school advertising (domestic and foreign) with advertising against law school. It seems ridiculous, but why? Law schools are generally happy to get the money from law students, they're not motivated to discourage people, if it's the role of the law society to limit entrants (that's a huge if) far better and cheaper to do so by mandating informed consent to go to law school, rather than simply guess at numbers (and which does nothing about foreign graduates).
  2. Ryerson Law by 2020 - Letter of Intent

    In theory, every lawyer would be both conscientious and self-insightful enough to know what they can't do, contra Dunning-Kruger. Unfortunately, in the real world, most people including lawyers think they're smarter and know more than they actually do. Yes, there are desperate/fraudulent cases, there are breaches of fiduciary duty like Aird & Berliss and an individual lawyer there recently, but I think most cases are lawyer just not realizing their limitations. And no, the market doesn't stop this from happening. I mentioned my own experience (albeit not recent), both small and large firm lawyers would practice IP without knowing enough. So by practice I mean try, and succeed in screwing-up their client's situation. At the very least, though might be hard to manage, require at least half of CLE to be directly related to major area of practice. Restrictions for real estate, should be similar for criminal (in a broad sense including provincial offences), family, civil litigation, tax, and IP in my view. Maybe others also, I have my own blind spots - but I know there are things I don't know... They may introduce specialized training and allow paralegals limited roles in family law, ideally there should be for others. But, such restrictions would piss off pretty much every current lawyer, and cost money, so screw that. Let alone the idea (not mine, read about it elsewhere and liked it) that at least all lawyer benchers should have to write and pass the bar ads every year (and paralegal benchers similarly), because if they can't, are they really qualified to be lawyers let alone benchers?
  3. You do know that when you quote someone, you can delete words within what you're quoting? So long as you make it explicitly clear that you've altered/shortened it, I don't see an issue with that (whereas when someone has deceptively altered a quote, it's the kind of thing that tends to provoke a strong reaction from me...though I'm trying to be more forgiving this Lent...).
  4. Ryerson Law by 2020 - Letter of Intent

    Not really both ways. EDIT: TL;DR: the LS can help law school graduates, by offering LPP or otherwise. They can help lawyers. But they can't help lawyers by simply limiting the numbers of law school graduates as a matter of competition law (even if they have that authority, contra the Competition Bureau? Let's see what the SCC says in TWU re the scope of the public interest mandate). I mean, to take a different example, the LS provides free tutoring for people who've failed the bar ads (or paralegal exams). They're not obliged to do so, but they're not prohibited from helping candidates. Now, with the LPP being not just helping, I could also see that perhaps if things got worse in terms of articles there might be some point at which the legislature or courts would grant relief. I mean, because I like extreme hypos, let's say the LS introduced a requirement that all articling principles had to be called at least 20 years in active practice, had to be a certified specialist, had to have a graduate degree in law as well (LLM or doctorate), and could have only one articling student, and as a result only about 1% of those in Ontario seeking articles each year found them, that would lead to changes because that would be unfair. Or let's say that they decided, hey we have enough lawyers, let's make this a bye year, all 2018 graduates won't be eligible to be called for 5 years, it may screw up their lives but the public won't detrimentally be affected - obviously that would lead to action being taken. While far less drastic, I assume a factor with the LPP was concern that if things continued it would eventually reach a point at which the available articles relative to the available students would become more serious and could lead to intervention/loss of some of LS's authority? We've discussed the comparison with medicine, this Star article from relatively recently was interesting. Though (again, as I've indicated before) the interaction between the government and practice of medicine in Canada is such that, whatever I may think of what the actual process and numbers are, it makes more sense for there to be control. It makes much less sense for law, or engineering, or RMTs, or (shudder) naturopaths, TCM, chiropractic, etc. "...Individual provinces create residency programs based their own needs. But in recent years, funding has grown so tight that there is an almost 1:1 ratio between residency spots and Canadian medical graduates. Factors like francophone graduates picked for programs outside Quebec — which leaves French-language residencies vacant — or competition from international medical school graduates has resulted in heavily subsidized, intensively trained Canadian graduates being bumped out...." https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2018/02/13/residency-backlog-could-triple-for-medical-school-grads-report-warns.html
  5. Windsor vs. Osgoode: "Big Five" Firm Prospects

    I thought you were a legal reformer, and meant to choose "heal the law" but made a typo.
  6. Windsor vs. Osgoode: "Big Five" Firm Prospects

    The best office I ever had was unfortunately temporary (because I was temporary, so was put in what was available), a southeast corner office on the top floor of First Canadian place, so a lovely view of the lake. On Friday afternoons I'd sometimes play chess while drinking Cognac with a colleague Friday afternoons before going home, because when you have offices like that, it seems like the thing to do...
  7. Suits for Women

    I posted a link to this in the suits for men thread, since it discusses both men's and women's fashion (including advice for women from the clothier for the show Suits), I'm cross-posting: Or for just the article without any of my comments... http://www.abajournal.com/magazine/article/lawyer_fashion_reflects_personality_tradition
  8. Suits For Men

    I saw this item at the ABA Journal website, interesting (whether or not one fully agrees) and includes a number of examples, and mentions at least one book on the subject of lawyer attire whose author is quoted, so may be of interest. Since it discusses both male and female attire (or whatever the PC term is), I'll post in the other thread also. "...The changing fashion landscape prompted attorney Douglas Hand to pen The Laws of Style: Sartorial Excellence for the Professional Gentleman. The book, which was recently published by the ABA, is a lighthearted primer for men on better wardrobe choices, providing guiding principles on how to present yourself to enhance—and advance—your career. “We’re at this inflection point aesthetically where business norms in manners of dress have changed,” says Hand, a partner at Hand Baldachin & Amburgey in New York City. “Casual Friday has given way to a casual workplace in a lot of offices and has thrown many men into a state of confusion.”..." It's also one of the rare mentions of the show Suits that doesn't mention Meghan Markle: "...Andreatta says the shirts for the male characters are custom-made; and the tailor she works with in Toronto, where the show is filmed, has dozens of lawyer clients who order custom suits and shirts. “It’s talent and craftsmanship that was starting to go away, and it seems to be coming back again,” Andreatta says, noting that this sort of patronage also supports the artisans who make the clothes...." http://www.abajournal.com/magazine/article/lawyer_fashion_reflects_personality_tradition
  9. Articling- next steps and woes

    OP, forgive me for stating the obvious, but do a business plan. LSUC actually has some useful materials (a bunch of the resources at LSUC are from or link to the ABA, who have some decent resources for small/solo practitioners generally also). I did an LSUC free (pilot) program on developing a business plan, and together with my knowing I'm not as entrepreneurial as some, I was disinclined to go solo (I mean, technically I am a solo PT, but I have FT non-legal work) it helped me decide on the different option I took (i.e. mostly non-law, but I had a relevant background that made that an option). I don't think the market for document review is great given the emphasis on search algorithms etc., but there are some. I knew some people (years ago) who had established sole practices, but did document review work to give starting capital. However, I think (this is an impression, no firsthand knowledge) that because the market is poor the hiring tends to be looking for specific backgrounds, e.g. the first hit on a search for document review gave me this: "Wortzmans, a division of McCarthy Tétrault LLP, is seeking contract lawyers for immediate support on a three to six month project. Although training will be in Toronto, Ontario, the position can be based in any location within Canada. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience working with Indigenous Peoples communities and issues." Great for someone if they have that experience or background, get some seed money, but otherwise? And I assume that document review is still seen as a black mark if one is seeking employment later (whereas if one is going solo, who cares?).
  10. Ryerson Law by 2020 - Letter of Intent

    While I don't agree with law societies setting limits (IF there are limits, should be imposed by government, which I also don't agree with, but at least that would be fairer, not the same conflict of interest), it's hugely wasteful and cruel to limit numbers at the point of licensing. At that point, competence (i.e. protection of the public) should govern. If you're going to have limits, try and predict numbers and limit enrollments at the front end. Again, I don't agree with that for multiple reasons, but it would be a lot less wasteful than limiting numbers artificially at the licensing stage.
  11. Ryerson Law by 2020 - Letter of Intent

    There's a wealth of past posts, threads, etc. that I could refer to where this has been discussed, literally, ad nauseum. I'll go back to 2012: TL;DR: IF there is to be an artificial limit on lawyers or legal training (with which I do NOT agree) it's up to the government, not law societies or self-entitled lawyers or law students who want to limit not just competition, but limit legal education in their own self-interest. It is right and just to limit law school enrollment to competent people, but that is a much, much larger group than the set of those who can get admitted in Canada given the limited number of spots.
  12. Elite Extracurriculars

    Hmm. Maybe one should just read (or watch the animated short) "The Hockey Sweater". Then you're prepared to talk about hockey...
  13. Elite Extracurriculars

    Well, don't be bashful. I just thought that having preached the test was in how one responded, that I should at least take a shot at doing so in a friendly fashion...
  14. Elite Extracurriculars

    I see it as a tragedy of diminished expectations + boy who cried wolf. Over the decades - literally - I've seen Leafs fans get excited and wax rhapsodic about even the most trivial things, or treat even more significant things (like a good coach) as if as worthy of celebration as a Stanley Cup. There's no proportionality or perspective, it seems that Leafs fans will praise everything from a new paint job on the zamboni (inspiring the players and fans when it comes out!) to actual (arguably) beneficial trades, to a two-game winning streak. Now, if the playoffs started today the Leafs would be in, okay, objectively that's a basis for being positive. But even if they were much worse, fans would be clinging to delusional threads of hope. EDIT: but if I were speaking with a client or prospective client, I might say something truthful but more friendly and with a smile like, having grown up in Toronto unfortunately I've learned not to count Leafs chickens before they hatch, I tend to wait until the playoffs to see how things shake out. But, on the hockey front, I think the NHL messed up by not taking a break for Olympic participation, especially since they want to grow demand internationally. What do you think, would you prefer seeing NHLers in the Olympics, or prefer it staying separate?
  15. Elite Extracurriculars

    Is the test, are you into hockey? Or is the test, how do you respond when asked about hockey? I can't speak to your (presumably much more recent than mine) experience. But I can say that I never lied, never said I loved hockey or the Leafs or anything like that. I had a pleasant way of indicating that because of Leafs' management or whatever I'd never gotten into following them, or something like that. But also, knowing that other people were into hockey, I made some effort to at least see what the news and columnists were writing about (and about news generally of course). Being able to make small talk is a valuable skill. It's not a lie to respond e.g., I'm not a huge fan of hockey because of how the Leafs have tended to do, but from what I've read about trade acquisition of X it looks like they might be interesting enough this season for me to start paying attention again. Or from what I've read about trading away Y it looks like they've kissed this season goodbye again. Or whatever. Substitute in the names you've read for X or Y.