With so many of us working remotely, the June issue of BarTalk is a digital-only issue. Watch for our next print issue in October. 

Read the June issue in magazine format here.

Sections Update | June 2020

Beyond Private Practice topics discussed in 2019-2020

June 2020

Sections Update | June 2020
Section Meetings Addressing Emerging Law in a Changing World

Several Sections are swift to provide contemporary programming that reflects the need for the practice of law, as well as for the law itself, to adapt to a world that continuously evolves. During the 2019-2020 term, many Section meetings focused on a breadth of topics that advance knowledge in what is emerging to the forefront of law, including the response to COVID-19; the need to learn about and use new technology to improve lawyer communications; improved cultural competency; and responding to recent legislative changes.

Law and COVID-19

COVID-19 has forced the legal profession to quickly restructure how lawyers and the courts operate. Various Sections, such as Labour Law, Insurance Law, and Family Law have held discussions on how best to conduct arbitration over Zoom, and how to mitigate legal issues that may arise due to COVID-19. Judges have also presented in Criminal Justice — Victoria and Family Law — Okanagan meetings to discuss their perspectives about how the courts are responding to
the pandemic.  

Using New Technology in Lawyer Communications  

Aboriginal Law — Vancouver hosted a meeting on the successful use of geographic information systems in trial, and its potential to be used by a wider range of lawyers in assisting their clients. In addition, Construction Law provided a primer for lawyers on building information modelling, an emerging form of design technology in construction. Air Law has also presented on the legal status of drone technology that is emerging in civilian and military markets throughout the world.

Cultural Competency

Given the current political climate in Canada, Indigenous issues continue to challenge Canadian law. Aboriginal Law Vancouver and Vancouver Island have provided meetings on cultural competency when working with Indigenous clients. Criminal Justice — Vancouver also discussed resources for Indigenous offenders in the criminal justice system, recognizing that those colonial histories continue to play a role in their overrepresentation in the system.

In addition, SOGIC hosted lawyer Alesdair Ittelson to discuss the implications of his work on the first case challenging “conversion therapy” for LGBTQI individuals as consumer fraud.

Legislative Changes Concerning Ownership Transparency

Several changes to British Columbian law concerning ownership was introduced in 2019. The Wills & Trusts — Vancouver, Real Property — Vancouver, and Business Law Sections hosted a joint meeting that provided recommendations for lawyers on how to advise their clients in complying with the requirements of the much-anticipated Land Owner Transparency Act. Commercial & Real Estate — Vancouver Island and Business Law also hosted a number of meetings that discussed the recent amendments to the BC Business Corporations Act.