Law Times

September 7, 2009

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A. NEUMAN ASSOCIATES INC. McKELLAR STRUCTURED SETTLEMENTS INC. 1-800-265-8381 $3.55 • Vol. 20, No. 27 ckellar_LT_Jan14_08.indd 1 1/8/08 3:03:02 PM Windsor lawyers hit by rough economy Decline of auto industry in Canada's Motor City taking toll on lawyers BY ROBERT TODD Law Times WINDSOR — Lawyers in Windsor — a city that relies on an auto industry that continues to stagger in the midst of finan- cial upheaval — say the hard-hit economy has had a direct impact on their practices. Richard Dinham, a lawyer with Mous- seau DeLuca McPherson Prince LLP and past president of the Essex Law Association, practises civil and family litigation in the city. He represents a long list of members of the Canadian Auto Workers union, and says the decline of the auto industry has taken a toll. Dinham, who is also a member of the Windsor Chamber of Commerce, says many autoworkers who have been laid off or accepted early retirement packages are finding it tough to keep up with court- ordered support payments. That's led to an influx of work around efforts to alter — usually reduce — such payments. "It's difficult — one of the things I no- tice with CAW workers is that they have pre-paid legal services plans, which is help- ful to them. They at least are in a position where they can retain counsel for a limited period of time and have this CAW plan cover the cost of it," says Dinham. "That does give them a bit of an opportunity to try to get their orders more reasonable, that they can afford. But a lot of other people that don't have pre-paid legal plans or aren't eligible for legal aid are in a difficult position because they can't even afford to hire a lawyer." That means Dinham and his colleagues situation for everybody — the payor of the support can't afford it, the payee requires and certainly can't afford to go without it. So it's a real dilemma. "It's just a sign of the times; it's the dif- ficult economy that we're in. As things re- bound and get better, hopefully it won't be as big a problem. I'm sure we've been through it before and we've survived it." Andrew Porter of immigration boutique Lots of unemployed autoworkers mean there is a lot of action for the family law bar, but also lots of unrepresented litigants, says Richard Dinham. are often working on cases against an unrep- resented litigant, which presents procedural challenges and makes it tough to weigh the merits of a case, he says. "I still find that I'm busy enough. It's not as though we don't have things to do," he says. "But it is more difficult in terms of trying to resolve things sometimes. It's just a difficult Hulka Porter LLP says while the city's auto industry has taken a hit, its location, wealth of skilled workers, and Canada's overall eco- nomic attractiveness should be enough to lure U.S. companies to the city. He says many U.S. entrepreneurs are concerned about the direction their country is taking, and fear ris- ing taxes as the country's deficit rises. "For the first time we're getting calls from American businesses," he says. "We in Cana- da have a great opportunity to attract disen- franchised U.S. business — our strong bank- ing system, our wealth of natural resources. We're strong in technology. Here in Windsor we have . . . the remnants of a very skilled workforce in the automotive industry." But Porter offers an admittedly contro- versial reason why Windsor has yet to at- tract such investment: "They're very leery of our history in labour relations," he says. "This just isn't my opinion. This is what I'm hearing when I receive calls from busi- nesspeople." Porter makes it clear that he is not "anti- union," nor is he saying they must be "set aside" for Windsor to prosper again. But, See There, page 5 Regulator can discipline member who quit: court A BY ROBERT TODD Law Times former investment facing dealer who quit the profession before disciplinary proceedings plans to take his battle over a self-regulatory organization's right to punish former members to the Supreme Court of Canada. Robert Brush, lawyer for The appeal court ruled the IDA has jurisdiction to pursue disci- plinary proceedings against previ- ously approved members who no longer work in the industry. Brush, of Crawley Meredith Brush LLP, declined to comment further on the case. The appeal court recently over- turned the Divisional Court's 2008 majority ruling, which found the Dealers Association of Canada, said that view "does not with- stand scrutiny." Hugh Corbett, director of litigation for the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada, an intervener in the case in sup- port of the IDA and Ontario Securities Commission, says the decision allows the mutual fund organization to continue to It's part of an effective deterrence message that a registrant simply can't walk away from alleged misconduct by resigning or being terminated. former Investment Dealers As- sociation of Canada member Stephen Taub, says his client will seek leave to appeal the Ontario Court of Appeal's recent decision in the case. TitlePlus_LT_Jan12_09 12/23/08 11:07 AM Page 1 Securities Act would need to be unduly "stretched" to permit the IDA to discipline Taub. The Court of Appeal, in rea- sons prepared by Justice Kathryn Feldman in Taub v. Investment move disciplinary cases along. Like the IDA, which be- came part of the new Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada in 2008, the Mutual Fund Dealers Association also is a 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! ® ® 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. 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. 1 Inside This Issue 3 Ottawa Shutdown 7 Access to Justice 9 Focus On Class Actions Quote of the week "It's true that in many settlements where there are no damages, there are worthy distributions to charitable causes, but I'm not convinced that's what a civil lawsuit is supposed to be about." — Caroline Zayid, McCarthy Tétrault LLP See Rulings, page 11 Covering Ontario's Legal Scene Forensic Accounting & Damages Quantifi cation Specialists Turn Crisis into Opportunity (416) 223-5991 Neuman_LawTimes.indd 1 September 7, 2009 12/9/08 11:12:30 AM self-regulatory organization recog- nized under the Securities Act. "It's very often the case that in situations involving the most serious forms of misconduct by approved persons, that they ei- ther resign themselves as soon as it's apparent that they're about to be found out. Or else as soon as there's the first inklings of mis- conduct coming to light, the member terminates the approved person," says Corbett. "The decision of the lower court, which the implication was the MFDA would not have juris- diction over former approved per- sons, would have meant that we were prevented form taking disci- plinary proceedings involving the worst instances of misconduct." See OSC, page 5 Click here LAW TIMES To subscribe today to Photo: Robert Todd

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