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ericontario last won the day on April 5 2014

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About ericontario

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  1. ericontario

    What is considered a good grade?

    That's something to ask your prof
  2. ericontario

    Going solo three years out

    I've always found that in town, we do agency appearances for colleagues as a favour that will be repaid some day kind of thing. That goes for when I was in crim, and also for family law. When I was still doing mostly crim though, I frequently did agency work for out of town lawyers on a paid basis, and never had any trouble getting paid except for one particular repeat customer who shall remain nameless. I once also did an agency case where client and defence counsel wete both out of province. The client had been charged in my locale but had never set foot here. It was an odd situation, but it paid me better than an actual block fee certificate would have.
  3. ericontario

    Incomplete Application

    If I remember (and it's been a while so I could be wrong), OLSAS doesn't send everything until a few weeks after the deadline to submit. The Nov 1 deadline is your cut off to submit to OLSAS - it's not also the day when OLSAS sends the assembled documents etc to the schools. That takes some time. I wouldn't worry at all at this point.
  4. ericontario

    Law School or Masters (MPP/MPA)

    Well, for one thing I would say that while most people end up going LAw School -> Articling -> Lawyer, it's not always the case, and it's certainly not guaranteed. I finished articles, got hired back as an associate, decided to change cities and practice areas so did duty counsel for a while, then worked for a firm for about a year to build up a client base and get some decent experience, and finally went back out on my own. The money as a new-ish call isn't great off of Bay Street our outside of government (there are exceptions, but generally you're not going to be making substantially more than you would in any other job that requires a degree one year out). While articling, my hours were crazy, but I enjoyed what I was doing for the most part. When I worked for the firm, my pay was mediocre, but my hours were amazing. Like 9:30ish to 5:00 every day, barring times when I was prepping for some kind of intense motion or other major thing. Now that I'm out on my own, the money is way better but the hours are not 9-5. There are days when I can come it at 10 and leave at 4 if I want to, but the bottom line is that as a solo practitioner, your paycheque depends on how committed you are to building the business and putting the work in. There are definitely nights when I stay until 8 or 9 pm, at least once or twice a week, and I usually leave around 6 on other "normal days". That said, you can book off time however and whenever you want - as long as you're not away for too long and you have someone to answer the phones etc. And again, there's a lot more to take home at the end of the day. There are a lot of government jobs where it won't necessarily be 9-5 either by the way... especially if you want something higher-level and you want to climb the ladder... just saying. I only know because I have a bunch of friends who've worked for Global Affairs Canada, the DOJ, and on the Hill, and if you're ambitious, it pays to stay (even if you don't necessarily see it on your paycheque right away). As for Ottawa, I loved it. My profs were fantastic for the most part (I had a couple who I didn't like, but that's going to happen wherever you go). The breadth of courses offered was incredible, the practical opportunities were great (I did a placement with the Crown Attorney's office, and worked in our school's community legal clinic), and I really liked the culture for the most part. The fact that it's a big school just means that you have more groups and niches to pick from, in my experience.
  5. ericontario

    Bond University

    I have a colleague who went to Bond around the same time that I went to Ottawa and she is a well-respected and very capable family lawyer. You already know that it would be easier to be called if you stayed in Canada, so there's no point in going much into that. But if you do end up going to Bond, all is not lost.
  6. ericontario

    National Program part-time

    Isn't the National Program the dual degree? You may have more luck if you just look for info on doing the LLL itself part-time. It doesn't surprise me that you haven't found much on the dual program since it has a set timeline, and you don't need to do the dual anyway.
  7. ericontario

    Apostrophe Error, Secure Applicant Messaging (SAM)

    If you try it. let us know how it goes.
  8. Are you seriously going to apply to law school based on what's easier to get into rather than where/what you actually want to practice? You may want to take some time, get some more life experience, and then apply once you've matured up a bit and know what you actually want to get out of the program. As for the joint programs, I only know of a joint JD-MBA. Never heard of a joint civil law degree with an MBA, but I suppose you could call the faculty and ask, or check out their website to confirm. I don't see any reason why you couldn't apply to more than one program at once, but again, you might want to check with the faculties.
  9. ericontario

    Crown Office Differences

    I feel less bad for them now then
  10. ericontario

    Crown Office Differences

    I never worked for the Crown - just did a placement during school. But I did article and work briefly in crim defense in Toronto for a short while, and my two cents are that the Crowns at 1000 Finch are generally the more unpleasant and difficult to work with than you typically see, and my personal theory is that it has something to do with the fact that their offices are up in this makeshift second floor area in a renovated mini-mall with absolutely no windows.
  11. ericontario

    Going solo three years out

    Ya, it's different for crim for sure. I now exclusively do family law and have a mix of maybe 70/30 LAO vs private. The office doesn't have to be fancy, but I would say it's a definite must if you have your eye set on attracting private clients. It also depends on the city you're in... I mean, affordability isn't going to be the same in downtown Toronto vs London, Ontario vs. Weyburn, Sask.
  12. ericontario

    Going solo three years out

    I disagree. I know a couple of lawyers in my city who have done this or who do, do this, and I would say that you at least need a virtual office where you can meet clients. The lawyers who just meet clients at the courthouse have received very negative feedback about that. I suppose if you are in one of those rare cities with a huge amazing courthouse with nice day offices that you can use, it might be different, but you need to present a professional face when meeting with clients. I would also question whether you will be as productive and motivated if you're working from home, so if you can go for a full-time office, I would do so. I would never meet clients a Tim Horton's. Again, it looks very unprofessional, and you have no control over volume, confidentiality, etc. That doesn't mean you need to rent a whole storefront or a suite in an office building - there are lots of great options for sharing office space or renting a single office in a larger space.
  13. ericontario

    What was it like getting in? How did you celebrate?

    I remember logging into the university's system, expecting to see "under consideration" or whatever it was again, and instead seeing you have been Admitted (yes in bold). Silent moment of shock and happiness. Then, gotta admit, a post on facebook and then a call to my family. Best feeling ever (and to-date still the most likes that I've ever got on a facebook post too I think lol).
  14. ericontario

    Best time to take vacation during articling

    I don't know... at the small firm I previously worked at, I got my three weeks plus Christmas no problem. You just block those weeks off in your calendar so nothing gets scheduled, go, and enjoy. I didn't have billable targets, we only tracked hours for the purpose of calculating bonuses. Salary was unaffected. Will depend firm-to-firm, but it's definitely not that hard to do just because you're at a small firm. Maybe you're thinking more about sole practitioners? If that's the case, I somewhat agree. It can still work, but you've got to have someone available in case of emergency.
  15. ericontario

    Application Query

    Do one extra year.