TORONTO, Oct. 22, 2012 /CNW/ - The Advocates' Society, Canada's leading organization for advocates, is calling on the Benchers of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the governing body of the legal profession in Ontario, to delay Thursday's debate and vote on the Final Report of the Articling Task Force. The Report was only released to the profession on October 15, 2012, and proposes significant changes to the articling and licensing process for lawyers in Ontario.
"The Law Society has declined our request to postpone debate and voting on the recommendations in this report so that all lawyers can have the opportunity to read and understand the differing views presented in the majority and minority sections of the report and make their views known to the Benchers of the Law Society," said Peter Griffin, President of The Advocates' Society. "We are calling on the Benchers to support a motion postponing debate until December, 2012."
"In the alternative, The Advocates' Society calls upon Benchers to support the minority position in the report: the abolition of articling," Mr. Griffin said. "The Advocates' Society shares the concerns expressed in the minority report that students who are unable to become licensed through the traditional articling process will be stigmatized. We are concerned by the dramatic 47% increase in licensing fees for new lawyers and the fact that the Law Society cannot demonstrate that articles are teaching law students how to be lawyers. The proposed solution does little to address these problems."
The Report, entitled "Pathways to the Profession: A Roadmap for the Reform of Lawyer Licensing in Ontario," is scheduled to be debated and voted on by the Benchers of the Law Society on Thursday, October 25, 2012. The debate will be webcast live.
The Advocates' Society is a not-for-profit organization of over 4,700 lawyers who practice as advocates in the resolution of disputes before the Courts, administrative tribunals, government bodies, arbitrations and other fora for dispute resolution. The mandate of the Society includes, amongst other things, commenting on issues that affect the profession, the initiation of appropriate reforms to the legal system and addressing proposed laws, regulations and policies that affect access to justice or the practice of law.
SOURCE: The Advocates' Society
For further information:
Peter Griffin, President, The Advocates' Society
email@example.com, (416) 865-2921
Theresa Leitch, Director of Policy and Practice Groups, The Advocates' Society