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Everything posted by realpseudonym

  1. Certificates are basically block fees, yes. Some firms don't do LAO certificates, but instead have an agreement with LAO to do a certain number of cases for a set price. I'm not sure students and associates there necessarily have hourly targets, but they carry a massive file load to ensure that the firm completes the expected amount of LAO work.
  2. As shown by the 2016 US election, you can do very well for yourself, if you (i) are shameless, (ii) slap your name on any surface that's for sale, and (iii) operate in an environment where regulators fail to both create space for fair competition and adequately protect the public. Of course, the personal cost is the respect of your peers. To anyone who doesn't care about that, enjoy your very nice house and whatever else you choose to buy.
  3. Catch and Kill was good. Edit: to the extent that future law students were going to read this through a legal lens, I'm not sure how useful it will be to focus on the systemic questions around sexism in employment, civil, and criminal law. Those are difficult problems, and aren't easy to think through until you've got a better handle on the history and relevant principles. Even then, it's a challenging set of problems, weighted with cultural norms and tied up with business interests. Law-wise, I think it's more interesting as a series of legal ethics case studies. Ronan Farrow gives quite a pages to the NBC and Weinstein lawyers, and, um, it's not always a flattering depiction. Yet, as lawyers, we prize the duty to loyalty to our clients as part of professional ethos. If you read the book as a 0L, I think it would be an interesting thought exercise to think through where, if any, lines were crossed and how you might handle it differently, while still professionally serving your client's interests. What did the New Yorker lawyers do differently with the same fact set? Placing yourself in the feet of those lawyers at those companies, where, honestly would you come down?
  4. On your marks, get set, ANGRY STUDENT EMAILS!
  5. U of T is definitively the hardest to get an A at, because they don't award letter grades. They award high passes. Which sound like props on a Seth Rogen movie set. For all other inquiries on this topic, I refer you to the Hegdis post above.
  6. Probably nothing, on the whole. You just see more aggressive tactics, more personal attacks in letters, more frivolous motions/applications, more over-the-top language, than you would in a smaller bar where you'd need to work with each of your colleagues more often. Edit: I'll note that my current opinion is a little more jaded than usual, as I'm dealing with some particularly uncooperative counsel during the midst of a pandemic.
  7. Adjusting to the general ridiculousness of some Toronto lawyers was a big culture shock, after studying on the east coast.
  8. I don't think this is right. Reading ahead assumes that you can acquire more knowledge ahead of time, and that having that knowledge ahead of time will be beneficial, once time-scarcity acts as a constraint on your ability to knowledge-gather. I think that this is wrong. The basic problem is that you can't meaningfully accumulate that knowledge ahead of time. You don't have the skills. That's okay -- that's what law school is for. Over the course of your law degree, you'll do your readings and go to class. And you'll start to sort through what to take away from a case, how to fit it into a legal framework, and how to apply that to a fact pattern. It's trial and error, and it makes you a faster, better law student over time. If you try and pre-empt that learning process, it's going to be a massive waste of time. You're going to spend hours looking at readings without much guidance, and most of what you take away won't have any application in law school. Worse than that, without instruction, you're probably going to start taking away the wrong things, leading to bad habits that will need to be fixed in law school. We're not just being glib. As least for my part, I'm speaking from experience. I didn't make the mistake of reading before law school. But, as a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed 1L, I tried to read waaay ahead during the first few weeks of school, so that I'd have more time to study for exams. That was a waste. I wasn't ready for November's readings in late September. I was ready for them in November, when they were scheduled to be read. I ended up overconfident. I wasn't more prepared. I just had less fun in September than my classmates. Don't try and pre-empt the process. Take an edible and watch True Detective season 1. It's the right path.
  9. Take an edible and (re)watch True Detective season 1. You'll learn just as much as you would from Getting to Maybe, plus you'll have taken an edible and watched True Detective season 1.
  10. Common penalties also include failure of the course, failure of the exam (which, where it's 100% final is failure of the course), or an overall reduction in your course grade, none of which are good. A notation on your transcript for a period of time is possible, and can pretty well preclude you from getting hired anywhere that they check for your transcript.
  11. Yes. You won’t be in front of a criminal court. Similarities can absolutely count and can be very challenging to rebut. Edit: while a lot of cheating goes undetected, it's easier than you think to get caught. In addition to reports from screening software and the idiosyncrasies that @ProfReaderraised, sudden changes in the quality of work (i.e., your shitty work suddenly gets great for a couple of sentences or paragraphs, in a way, that after some investigation corresponds to that of another student or to an uncited work), making similar unusual errors, similarities in overall structure or style, etc can all be evidence of misconduct. As a subjective observation, most misconduct doesn't move students from the B to the A range. Misconduct, as I saw it, tended to result from casual over-collaboration, misapprehension of the rules, or, most commonly in cases I saw, an act of desperation. None of those tended to occur where good work would've been made great as a result of cheating. It was usually found in poor to below average work. I say this, because if some of you are considering bending the rules to keep up, I don't think that's smart. I would deem it very unusual that the group of students committing unauthorized collaboration were gaining such an advantage as to necessitate the participation of everyone else to keep up. The gains are usually relatively marginal, and in the lower portion of the class. The risks are substantial and are realistic enough to deter participation.
  12. Depends. But based on a role I worked in, I can assure you that while it's rare, law students can be subject to academic misconduct allegations and those can be devastating for your career.
  13. Also, academic integrity rules and penalties including expulsion.
  14. For all the outrage this is causing, this won't negatively impact that many of you. The temporary move to pass-fail grading will just make everyone look average for a semester or two. For about 65-80%, (depending on your curve), you'd all get mostly Bs, a couple of As, a couple of Cs, and maybe a D if you had a braincramp or missed a question on an exam. You'd then get an outside shot at the most competitive positions, but are more likely to end up articling at one of the many non-OCI/clerkship jobs and move on to a relatively prosperous life, undefined by your law school exams. For all the average students, I'm guessing it's status quo vis-a-vis grading and OCIs. For the A students, this sucks, and it's nice for C students. I'm guessing the most upset people are assuming that they're going to be at the top of the class. If you actually were, that kinda sucks -- you'll all get bumped to the middle (although, again, you're probably going to be average overall: that's how averages work). But honestly, if you're as good at law exams as you think you are, you'll be fine, because you're a sharp legal analyst and you'll prove that later. Anyway, if it makes you happy, grab your pitchforks, virtually march on the dean's office, and burn your law schools to the ground via some sort of instagram-style fire filter (I don't know anything about filters). But I mean, c'mon. Almost everyone is making sacrifices right now, and moving to pass-fail is definitely not the worst. I have a refugee claimant who has waited two years to get before the RPD, so that she can hopefully become a protected person, and be reunited with the baby (now child) she had to leave behind after she fled horrific persecution. If she can accept the delay with grace, hopefully you'll adjust to your new grading system. Because really, I think you're going to be perfectly okay.
  15. Really, law societies ought to be flexible with call dates this year, allowing abridgements and extensions that result in paper calls or special call ceremonies without needing to delay for several months.
  16. This list is amazing. I have so many questions.
  17. No one could possibly know at this point. Government workers are trying to figure out how to access their documents from home and worrying about daycare closures. There's not enough information to update budgets yet, let alone think all the way through personnel and discretionary spending until you get to student hiring.
  18. There are plenty of times in my young legal career where my confidence has temporarily outpaced my ability and knowledge. That can happen. Especially given that I'm relatively young and male - two significant risk factors for arrogance. It's really important that I keep that shit in check. Like every lawyer, I need to know what I don't know, and it's important to remember that I don't know a lot. Recognizing my own limitations is a necessary first step to mapping out what I need to research, who I need to talk to, what other prep work I need to do, and how much time to budget for those things. Forgetting that I'm new and stupid means forgetting to learn what I need to. That's a recipe for incompetence. If I was overly harsh with OP - and I really don't think I was - it wasn't out of some bullying instinct. I suspect that he needs to learn the same lessons I'm learning. Those lessons don't have to do with debating ideas. In fact, that's part of the problem. One of the lessons of being new and inexperienced is that practicing law isn't a seminar, where everyone's free to throw out their best guesses and see how it lands. When you owe duty to a client, there's a huge price for being wrong, and if you aren't willing to listen to people who know more than you, you'll be wrong a lot. Maybe OP will take something positive away from Diplock and Hegdis' (Hegdis or Hegdis's-- what's the plural possessive of a Hegdis?) posts. And during articling, he'll have a principal, and hopefully that principal will serve as a partial corrective for any of the excesses displayed in this thread. But at the end of the day, it's our own responsibility to maintain a modicum of self-awareness. If he wants to thrive as a lawyer, now is as good a time as any to start doing so.
  19. We’re not talking about showing ankle in the midst of Victorian era sexual repression — the curve isn’t a dirty little secret that goes unspoken. It’s the norm in law school grading. It’s widely accepted and can be freely discussed by students and profs.
  20. No, I don't. Not necessarily. I frequently disagree with individual prosecutorial decisions and with the policies of MAG and the DOJ. I have my complaints. Those include some of what you've mentioned, like cases where I do think Crowns became overinvested in proving their theory of the case, and might have strayed from their quasi-judicial role of ensuring the fair administration of justice. And because I've gotten invested in my own cases, I can understand how that might happen on a human level, but nevertheless felt frustrated that they pursued a case longer and more zealously than I felt they should have done, based on the evidence. I also think you're painting with too broad a brush, and that your characterization of Crowns in general isn't particularly accurate. As I think we've agreed on, it's not a particularly productive view. Nor will it be healthy to harbour animosity to opposing counsel. I say this as someone who has vented loudly and often about strange litigation decisions made by government lawyers. But I also recognize that it's bad for me and my clients to let cynicism slip into my professional ethos. In reality, most of the time, lawyers on the other side are doing their best with what they have and I should just focus on what's in my control.
  21. Sending up the batsignal: paging @Diplock!
  22. If you do practice criminal defence, Crowns will be your colleagues. Like them or not, you'll be dealing with them everyday, and you need to have good working relationships. If you approach them with this underlying attitude, you'll do a disservice to your clients. Edit: you should give it more time. Plenty of Crowns are good at their jobs. And FWIW, some were excellent defence lawyers, before becoming prosecutors. It's hard to imagine that those lawyers aren't even remotely understanding of the accused's situation.
  23. I would be very surprised if multiple prosecutors got up in front of a room full of students, and expressed a total disregard for the pre-trial and trial processes that they've devoted their careers to.
  24. Please don't buy a useless American degree to avoid going to Ryerson. The Dual is an okay option, if your second choice is Bond/the UK. Otherwise, I think the smart decision is Ryerson. The extra debt will have real tangible consequences. I'm earning as much you're likely to make after going to Windsor, if not more. I'm making monthly payments on a principal that's far less than $120,000.00+ and it's still difficult to come up with the money every thirty days. I'm doing okay. But I'd be behind every month if I was repaying what you'd owe for your Windsor dual, and would probably default if an extra expense arose. I think Ryerson is the smarter option, even accounting for the uncertainty around its newness.
  25. How long has it been? As a student, I was in a position where I don't think I was a lawyer's favourite to start -- she worked really closely with someone else and I barely got anything good for the first little while. Overtime though, I wormed my way on to more files, and eventually started getting lots of really interesting work from her. In that case, I never raised it as an issue and wasn't really overt in taking credit for my work. I just kept expressing interest in certain cases, would volunteer to do things that I wanted to do, and would try and do a really thorough job with them. But I guess it depends on your situation.
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