The Power of Perspectives

The Canadian Bar Association

Kim Covert

CBA influence

Are market studies in the Competition Bureau’s remit?

By Kim Covert July 13, 2018 13 July 2018

 

This spring the federal Competition Bureau released a bulletin to “describe how market studies are used to promote competition, and to provide transparency to stakeholders regarding how the Bureau selects and conducts market studies.”

The Competition Law Section starts out its response to the bulletin by noting its concerns about the Bureau’s jurisdiction to carry out broad-based market studies, as opposed to inquiries or investigations where competitive concerns have been raised.

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CBA influence

Take care of the foreign caregivers: Recommendations for the IRCC

By Kim Covert July 11, 2018 11 July 2018

 

Foreign caregivers and personal care workers face an onerous process to get into the country, let alone to bring their families, renew their work permits and get on the permanent resident track, says the CBA’s Immigration Law Section.

All of these areas and more should receive special consideration by Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada’s current review of the Caregiver Pathways, which are due to expire in November 2019. The government has committed to establishing an improved pathway to permanent residence for caregivers.

The Section’s letter to the IRCC followed a conference call with the Department in May as part of its informal consultations with stakeholders. The Section made comments on five specific topics: labour market impact assessments, work permits, eligibility and application for permanent resident status, transition program, and enactment by regulation versus ministerial instruction.

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CBA influence

Taking leave: Federal and provincial parental leave allowances may differ

By Kim Covert June 28, 2018 28 June 2018

 

The storybook version of new parenthood is a glorious nesting time in a tidy house with a baby who sleeps long enough for you to sleep and (if you want a longer bonding period) a choice to stretch Employment Insurance payments for 61 weeks.

The reality can be much different: a long delivery, recovery not improved by lack of sleep – and who needs to shower more than once a month anyway? And then finding out that while the federal government may let you choose up to 61 weeks of parental benefits, your province or territory has no corresponding right to parental leave for that long, meaning you’re going to get a lot less money than you expected, over a shorter period of time.

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CBA influence

C-58 Update: The government should reconsider its position on solicitor-client privilege

By Kim Covert June 27, 2018 27 June 2018

 

The legal profession will have to step up the pressure to protect solicitor-client privilege, based on the latest communication from the federal Justice Minister.

Seven months after meeting with a delegation that included officials from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada and the CBA, and six months after receiving a submission from the Privacy and Access Law Section on Bill C-58, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould has written to President Kerry Simmons, Q.C., to politely disagree with the CBA’s position on solicitor-client privilege.

Clauses 15 and 50 in the proposed amendments to the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act would give Information and Privacy Commissioners unfettered access to records that are withheld by the head of a government institution on the basis that they are protected by solicitor-client privilege, professional secrecy or litigation privilege.

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CBA influence

Playing our cards right: Improving the PR experience

By Kim Covert June 26, 2018 26 June 2018

 

In a perfect world, an immigrant gets permanent resident status, receives the appropriate paperwork in a timely manner, and a new life in the new country – travel, school, employment – goes on as normal.

And about 80 per cent of the time in Canada this is the case – applications for new permanent resident cards are processed in about two months, and renewals take about four months. But the other 20 per cent of the time, the CBA’s Immigration Law Section says, all bets are off – lawyers have had cases where it’s taken as much as 12 months to get a PR card, presenting difficulties “ranging from inconvenience to emotional and financial hardship for the applicant, their family members and their employers.”

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