‘No doubt’ it
Continued From Page 1
“The problems surrounding access
to justice are complex and exist
throughout the world. The work
we’re doing isn’t a quick fix, but it
is a step in the right direction
toward helping people afford the
legal help they need.
“You don’t need to go to law
school to figure out that without
access to justice there can be no
justice. The law society is working
to make a difference where it can.”
Bencher Art Vertlieb said the
LSBC access to justice committee
hopes to have proposals regarding
an expanded role for articling students before benchers for approval
“It really is up to us to get this
through as soon as possible,” Vertlieb said, adding he hopes for
provincial court approval on the
expanded roles soon.
“It’s new ground for judges to
hear a paralegal in their court,” he
said. “Our own hope is that if the
provincial court approves this, the
supreme court judges will accept it.
“There is no doubt it will lower
the cost of legal advice,” he said. “It
will help people get legal advice
with the protection of a lawyer.”
LSBC chief legal officer Deb-
orah Armour told benchers other
societies are being canvassed for
their approaches on setting stan-
dards for the expanded roles.
“Once we get the information
back, we will implement those
standards,” she said.
Added Hume, one of the reasons Bars in countries such as
Australia lost regulatory control
was because disciplinary control
Hume said he had received
support from B.C. Supreme Court
Chief Justice Robert Bauman for
And, said B.C. Court of Appeal
Chief Justice Lance Finch in an
address to the Access/Pro Bono
Appreciation Breakfast March 31,
the affordability and accessibility of
pro bono legal advice can be
enhanced through an expanded
role for paralegals in legal practice
as embraced by the LSBC.
Access to justice was spotlighted in B.C. in early March with
the release of a report on the province’s legal aid system.
Veteran B.C. lawyer Len Doust,
who headed The Public Commission on Legal Aid launched in
June 2010, said B.C.’s legal aid
system is failing to meet the
human, economic and social
needs of British Columbians and
should be an essential service like
health care. n
Nova Scotia’s justice minister
is cleaning house. Ross Landry
has introduced an omnibus bill to
improve the administration of
justice in the province.
“This is really about simplify-
ing things and making the system
more efficient by keeping legisla-
tion current and understandable,
and removing the legislation
that’s not being used,” Landry
said in a news release announ-
cing the new legislation.
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