By Julius Melnitzer | January 31, 2024
SAMFIRU TO FACE MISCONDUCT ALLEGATIONS IN ALBERTA
Lior Samfiru, the Toronto-based national co-managing partner of employment law boutique Samfiru Tumarkin LLP, a firm that claims to be the “most positively reviewed employment law firm in Canada”, must now contend with allegations of professional misconduct in Alberta in addition to those currently extant in Ontario. The Law Society of Alberta alleges that Samfiru improperly failed to promptly transfer a client’s file when her lawyer left the firm; attempted to influence the complainant to withdraw her complaint; and failed “to act honourably and with integrity.” None of the allegations in Alberta or in Ontario have been proven.
YELLOW BRICK ROAD: A LEGAL RETELLING
Legal Cheek reports that Irish firm Gallagher McCartney Barry Solicitors has placed a large yellow slide in its Donegal office. It takes lawyers and clients from the first floor to reception. The thoroughfare has proved popular: “It’s not just a gimmick either, footage on social media showing lawyers making the most of the office’s one-way highway,” Legal Cheek notes. But it’s not the first slide in a law office, the publication observes: until 2015, UK intellectual property firm Withers & Rogers had a Sheffield office featuring an 85 foot Helter Skelter (a lighthouse with a spiral shaped slide built around the tower).
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ANOTHER NO-NO FOR LAWYERS
Calling an opposing lawyer a “pathetic human” is professional misconduct, says the New South Wales Civil and Administrative Tribunal. According to Practice Source, solicitor George Sideris also suggested that the “pathetic human” would be responsible for the death of an elderly woman and sent emails directly to the adverse party. Sideris, who was representing his mother-in law in a dispute with The Salvation Army, no less, claimed he was not acting in his professional capacity and therefore could not be professionally sanctioned. The Tribunal would have none of that.
CLIMATE CHANGE CHARTER-BASED CLAIMS ARE VIABLE: FCA
The Federal Court of Appeal has permitted the plaintiffs in La Rose v. Canada and Misdzi Yikh v. Canada to amend their pleadings in claims challenging the federal government’s climate policy and legislation as violating the Charter of Rights and Freedoms’ guarantee of life, liberty and security, “The FCA has now recognized that there may be viable challenges to climate change legislation under section 7 of the Charter,” write Jonathan Khan, Brendan MacArthur-Stevens and Leah Kelley in a Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP client bulletin.
FC TO DECIDE WHETHER CSC DISCRIMINATES AGAINST OLDER INMATES
Justice Simon Fothergill of the Federal Court has certified a class action against the Correctional Service of Canada alleging that the Service’s systemic discrimination has harmed inmates over 50, who comprise some 25 percent of the custodial population. In the course of the proceedings, CSC conceded that older inmates are a “vulnerable population”. And in 2019, a report from the Office of the Correctional Investigator and the Canadian Human Rights Commission concluded that the Service’s treatment of older inmates “does not respect their human rights; is not justified in terms of institutional security or public safety, is inconsistent with the administration of lawful sentences imposed by courts; and is unnecessarily costly to Canadians.”
Julius Melnitzer is a Toronto-based legal affairs writer, ghostwriter, writing coach and media trainer. Readers can reach him at [email protected] or https://legalwriter.net/contact.