Former Law Society Treasurer describes history of legal profession keeping foreign law grads out of the bar

This is a fascinating article written by Vern Khrishna former Treasurer of the Law Society of Upper Canada. This excerpt is especially interesting:

The last two paragraphs outline the history of the Canadian legal profession in keeping foreign law graduates out of the bar.


Foreign workers gaffe sets PCs back

Chris Selley, National Post · Sept. 8, 2011 | Last Updated: Sept. 8, 2011 2:06 AM ET

This week, we learned that would-be Ontario premier Tim Hudak doesn’t like the idea of paying employers $10,000 to hire unemployed immigrants, and $0 to hire other unemployed people. You’d have to think the vast majority of Ontarians would agree with him on that. And based on the information that was available on Monday morning, they had reason to believe that’s what the Liberals were actually proposing.

The Canadian Press obtained a leaked copy of the Liberal platform, along with a recording of a strategists’ conference call, on Sunday. “People who hire an immigrant for their first job in Ontario would be eligible for a tax credit on the first $10,000 of costs associated with the hiring,” CP reported. Continue reading “Foreign workers gaffe sets PCs back”

Excelling in the NCA Process – October 17/11 – Toronto

Young Lawyers’ Division Central: Excelling in the NCA Process and Beyond |
October 17, 2011

Foreign-qualified lawyers must obtain a Certificate of Qualification from the National Committee on Accreditation (“NCA”) to practice in Ontario. The NCA, a standing committee of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada (“FLSC”), examines the qualifications of foreign-qualified lawyers and makes recommendations on behalf of the Law Society of Upper Canada (“LSUC”), and all other law societies in Canada, as to the further study of law required before the applicant can enter a particular bar admission program. The NCA process can be challenging, especially for those with limited prior connections to Ontario. In this program, speakers will discuss the NCA program and the subsequent LSUC requirements, and will provide tips for success during the NCA process and beyond, i.e., with respect to acquiring an articling position and practicing law. This free-to-attend program will benefit both NCA applicants and those who wish to know more about hiring foreign-qualified lawyers. The program will be followed by a free-to-attend networking reception hosted by the Ontario Bar Association.

Michaelle Louise Simard,Krylov & Company Barristers
Guillermo Cruz Cruz Herrera Ltd

Paul Sweeny, OBA President
Deborah Wolfe, DManaging Director of NCA
Gina Alexandris, Director, Internationally Trained Lawyers Program, University of Toronto Faculty of Law
Kara Sutherland, Director of Professional Resources, Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP
Daphne Simon, Associate Registrar, Law Society of Upper Canada Faculty of Law
Angela Sordi, Consultant, ZSA Legal Recruitment
Hugo Leal-Neri, PhD candidate at University of Toronto

Date: Monday, October 17, 2011
Time: 2:15 pm Registration | 2:30 pm Program with Q&A period | 4:30 pm Program concludes followed by Reception
Location: The Conference Centre at the OBA, 20 Toronto Street, 2nd Floor

Register for Live Program | Program Details

**This is a complimentary program**

Elections news – tax credit to hire foreign lawyers

This interesting proposal seems to be experiencing lots of criticism. Remember that the McGuinty government brought you the Fair Access To Regulated Professions Act.

“Canadian immigrants are underemployed, and the Ontario Liberals think they have a solution: Help employers hire immigrants so they can get Canadian work experience. It may be well-meaning, but it is ultimately an inefficient and divisive policy.

The proposal would give $10,000 to employers to defray costs associated with training and mentorship needed to achieve Ontario certification. It’s focused on regulated professions – jobs in fields such as accounting, law, teaching, engineering, forestry and early childhood education.”

Check out the comments too.



Top U.S. class-action lawyer coming to Canada

U.S. lawyer Michael Spencer - U.S. lawyer Michael Spencer | Kevin Van Paassen/The Globe and

Top U.S. class-action lawyer coming to Canada


From Wednesday’s Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, May. 10, 2011 6:50PM EDT
Last updated Tuesday, May. 10, 2011 6:57PM EDT

Ontario’s move to allow American-style shareholder class-action lawsuits has attracted a feared and revered Wall Street plaintiffs’ lawyer to the province just as the pendulum is swinging away from similar suits in the United States.

Michael Spencer, a senior partner who sits on the executive committee at Milberg LLP – one of the original class-action firms – is preparing to practise law in Canada. Continue reading “Top U.S. class-action lawyer coming to Canada”

The Party Leaders – Their Positions on Foreign Professionals

Harper en rajoute concernant la souveraineté
Conservative Leader Stephen Harper
The Question Posed To The Leaders:
Many immigrants to Canada are encouraged and allowed to move here based on their professional experience or credentials, only to discover once they arrive that their credentials are not recognized. What role should the federal government play in addressing this problem?
The Answers:

The Conservative  Party

Stephen Harper’s government met the challenge of the global economic crisis head on with our world-leading Economic Action Plan. Support for foreign credentials recognition has been a key part of our economic agenda. In 2009, we invested $50 million over two years for the development and implementation of the Pan-Canadian Framework for the Assessment and Recognition of Foreign Qualifications. This funding has helped to streamline the recognition process in a number of important occupations and made it easier for foreign-trained Canadians to use their skills and expertise in Canada. Continue reading “The Party Leaders – Their Positions on Foreign Professionals”

Canada’s lawyers broadening their horizons


Canada’s lawyers broadening their horizons
Canadians are seeking opportunities for legal education in other countries — notably England, Australia and the United States.

Reuters Files

Canadians are seeking opportunities for legal education in other countries — notably England, Australia and the United States.

Vern Krishna, Financial Post · Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011

What a difference a generation makes in the composition of the Canadian bar and the international competencies required of Canadian lawyers, who are broadening their horizons and becoming increasingly international in outlook and scope of work. More foreign-trained lawyers are immigrating into Canada; more Canadians are going to study abroad in foreign law schools; and law firms are looking at forging international partnerships in Europe and the Middle East. Continue reading “Canada’s lawyers broadening their horizons”

UToronto to offer bridging for foreign-trained lawyers

By | July 3rd, 2009 | 4:24 pm

Program will offer academic training, language referrals, career services and employment counselling to lawyers who want to practice in Ontario

The University of Toronto is starting Ontario’s first bridging program for internationally trained lawyers, thanks in part to a $4 million investment in the program from the provincial government.

Every year, the Internationally Trained Lawyer Program will aim to help 100 lawyers who need accreditation to practice law in the province. Michael Chan, Ontario’s minister of citizenship and immigration, launched the program a ceremony last Tuesday.

More: Ranking Canada’s law schools

“We have tremendous international talent, a pool of talent here in Ontario for which we already have bridging programs, such as pharmacists, engineers and nurses, who are all internationally trained but are not currently in the job that they want,” said Chan. “Our economic prosperity depends on attracting skilled newcomers from around the world and retaining those people.”

The program will provide a range of services,  including provincial work experience, academic training, language support, career services and employment counselling. It’s set to operate out of U of T’s law faculty, and will be supported by groups including the Law Society of Upper Canada and the National Committee on Accreditation, in addition to local law firms.

For more information, click here.