Law Times

November 10, 2008

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A.NEUMAN ASSOCIATES INC. McKELLAR STRUCTURED SETTLEMENTS INC. www.mckellar.com 1-800-265-8381 www.mckellar.com ckellar_LT_Jan14_08.indd 1 $3.55 • Vol. 19, No. 351/8/08 3:03:02 PM Covering Ontario's Legal Scene Canadian firm signs unprecedented agreement Deal signals massive opportunities A BY ROBERT TODD Law Times Canadian law firm has signed an un- precedented deal with a Chinese trade promotion institution, which one business expert says should signal to others in the legal industry the massive opportunities available in the communist country that holds about a fifth of the world's population. "It's a major agreement for our firm, a lot of potential as well to grow our business and of course to increase our co-operation with Chi- na," Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP partner Martin Cauchon tells Law Times in a tele- phone interview from China, where the deal was signed last week at a ceremony in Beijing during a joint mission by the Canada China Business Council and five Canadian premiers. The arrangement will see the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade's legal affairs department refer clients to Gowlings and school the firm's professionals on the Chinese market. In return, Gowlings will provide legal assistance to Chinese companies in Canada, and offer business seminars on this country's market. The agreement further expands the major Canadian firm's international reach. Gowl- ings has offices in Moscow and London, and Cauchon says a representative office in China would be the logical next step for the firm, but adds by no means has that been decided. The firm currently has relationships with ma- jor Chinese firms, which complete part of the work on deals involving Chinese clients. "Of course we would like to increase our presence here in China to provide better ser- vices," says Cauchon, national leader of the firm's China group and a former federal "There's a lot happening here in China," he says, adding the timing is more of a coincidence than a reaction to the current economic situation. CCPIT bills itself on its web site as "the most im- portant and the largest institution for the promo- tion of foreign trade in China." The Beijing-based institution was established in 1952, according to the web site, and Cauchon says it has signed simi- lar deals with U.S. law firms. Gowlings noted it was the firm that filed the first Canadian patent application in China when the country's patent office opened in 1985. Schulich School of Business Prof. Justin Tan, who was the first U.S. Fulbright Scholar in Chi- na business economics, says Canadian law firms need to push further into the Chinese market. "I'm strongly convinced that Canadian firms should be more involved in Chinese trade, and have a lot more to gain, especially in areas where Canada has a special advantage," says Tan, adding high value-added services like legal work is a definite area of opportunity. Canada's relatively stronger ties to China 'It's a major agreement for our firm, a lot of potential as well to grow our business and of course to increase our co-operation with China,' says Martin Cauchon. attorney general. "If you're interested in doing business with [China], they like it when you decide to get established in their local market." The timing of the deal is also beneficial, notes Cauchon, with the Chinese market ex- pected to grow by as much as nine per cent next year as other global markets forecast contrac- tion amidst the global economic downturn. compared to other major economic powers gives the country's business sector a rare opportunity to enter the Chinese market, says Tan. Prof. Betty Ho, who teaches a "financial markets in China" course at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, says Canadian lawyers have skills desired by Chinese companies. "I think Canada in fact has an advantage that she has not fully used. Canada is unique in that the average Canadian lawyer would know English law and American law, in addition to Canadian law," she says. "But you ask an average English lawyer and he might not know anything about American law. You ask an American law- yer, and he'll know nothing about English law." See Advice, page 4 Iacobucci to steer commission on track BY ROBERT TODD Law Times F ormer Supreme Court judge Frank Iacobucci was called to action last week to help steer the Indian Residential Schools Truth and Reconciliation Commission back on course after last month's res- ignation of Justice Harry LaForme. Pierre Baribeau, who repre- sents Catholic groups that ran the schools, says he recommended Iacobucci as facilitator for a meet- ing last Friday between parties in- volved in the commission due to the respect he gained as federal ne- gotiator of the settlement package in 2006 that created the TRC. "I thought that if there were is- sues . . . as facilitator, he would have the credibility right away with all the parties and would be able to bring them along to successful discussions, so that the replacement of the chair be done in an expedient way," says the Lavery de Billy LLP lawyer. Iacobucci's decision to help the Titleplus_LT_Nov10_08 11/3/08 8:49 AM Page 1 parties was announced in a press release from the Assembly of First Nations, a group LaForme accused of meddling with the truth commis- sion's work before his resignation. The AFN praised Iacobucci, a former chief justice of the Federal Court and currently counsel at Torys LLP, in the release: "Justice Iacobucci has, through his work on the IRSSA, made an enormous contribution towards achieving a fair, compre- hensive, and lasting resolution of the legacy of Indian residential schools." AFN National Chief Phil Fon- taine urged the government to speedily appoint a replacement for LaForme. "The government of Canada must expedite the process to fill the vacancy of the Truth and Recon- ciliation Commission taken from a pool of candidates nominated by survivors, aboriginal organizations, churches, and government, in final consultation with the AFN, as out- lined in the settlement agreement," Fontaine said in a separate release. LaForme, an Ontario Court of Appeal judge, cited "an incurable problem" within the commission in his resignation letter to Indian Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl. "The two commissioners are unprepared to accept that the structure of the commission re- quires that the TRC's course is to be charted and its objectives are to be shaped ultimately through the authority and leadership of its chair," wrote LaForme, who was Together we have all the tools To ensure your clients get the most comprehensive coverage in one title insurance policy, take a look at the TitlePLUS Program , your Bar-related real estate partner! 1 ® PROTECTION AS GOOD AS IT GETS 1-800-410-1013 ® TitlePLUS, the TitlePLUS logo, OwnerEXPRESS and LAWPRO are registered trademarks of Lawyers' Professional Indemnity Company. ® BAR-RELATED Mark is a registered Mark of North American Bar Related Title Insurers used by LAWPRO under License. titleplus.ca 1 Please refer to the policy for full details, including actual terms and conditions. The TitlePLUS policy is underwritten by Lawyers' Professional Indemnity Company (LAWPRO®). Contact LAWPRO for brokers in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta and Québec. TitlePLUS policies issued with respect to properties in Québec and OwnerEXPRESS® policies do not include legal services coverage. appointed chairman of the com- mission in April. TRC commissioner Claudette Dumont-Smith told Law Times after that she and fellow commis- sioner Jane Morley, a B.C. lawyer, seemed to have a different view on the chairman's role. "I'm aboriginal and I believe in consensus for decisions," said Dumont-Smith. The TRC was created as part of the $1.9-billion, class action settle- ment with survivors of residential schools, who endured physical and psychological abuse. Some 150,000 aboriginal, Inuit, and Mé- tis children attended the schools. Baribeau, who was on the se- lection committee that chose La- Forme, says it's unfortunate the commission must deal with the fallout from his resignation. LT Call 416.223.5991 www.IFAccountant.com Investigative & Forensic Accounting Specialists Proven Expertise ntitled-6 1 November 10, 2008 1/8/08 3:28:10 PM Inside This Issue 2 Fatboys Running 7 Avoiding Equalization 9 Focus On Family Law Quote of the week "I would say that the No. 1 [error] is not ensuring that the agreement is papered properly to ensure that spousal support is tax deductible to the payer or taxable in the hands of the payee." –– Lorne Wolfson, lawyer, Torkin Manes Barristers & Solicitors See Risk, page 13 www.lawtimesnews.com

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