Monday, September 01, 2008

Canadian Bar Association Conflict of Interest Report

The Canadian Bar Association Task Force looking into conflict of interest issues recently released its report:
"The Task Force is convinced that the current conflicts rules must change. We believe that clarity and harmony in the rules across the country will be beneficial to lawyers and to their clients. Clarity and harmony in the rules will also reduce the tactical use of conflict of interest challenges, a recent development that impedes the efficiency of our legal system and undermines public confidence in both our profession and the administration of justice in Canada."
The report presents 21 recommendations "to address the difficulties with the current conflicts rules, recognizing that it is up to the regulatory bodies to decide on codes of professional conduct and up to the courts to decide how to apply the rules in the codes within the context of the law and the public interest." (p. iii).

The document provides a summary and discussion of relevant caselaw from the Supreme Court of Canada, an analysis of the issues that are arising in legal services in the 21st century and the impact they have on conflict questions (law firm mergers, mobility of lawyers), confidentiality, who exactly is a client, etc.

Finally, the report offers a conflict of interest toolkit.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:37 pm


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