• 18th Annual Advocacy Conference

    Thursday, December 6th 2018
    9:00 a.m. - 4:35 p.m.
    The Hamilton Convention Centre
    (1 Summers Lane, Hamilton)

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  • Corporate Commercial Law Seminar

    Thursday, October 11th 2018
    9:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
    Sheraton Hamilton Hotel - Centre/East Ballroom
    (116 King Street West, Hamilton)

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  • Real Estate Seminar

    Thursday, November 1 2018
    9:00 a.m. - 1:15 p.m.
    Sheraton Hamilton Hotel - Grand Ballroom
    (116 King Street West, Hamilton)

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  • Employment Law Seminar

    Thursday, November 15th 2018
    2:00 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.
    7th Floor Jurors' Lounge
    John Sopinka Courthouse
    (45 Main Street East, Hamilton)

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  • Looking for a Lawyer in Hamilton?

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  • Looking for a legal job in Hamilton?

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What's New

Judicial Vacancy Ontario Court of Justice Kitchener

Jul 16, 2018
The Judicial Appointments Advisory Committee advises the Attorney General of Ontario on the appointment of Judges to the Ontario Court of Justice, and invites applications for a bilingual judicial position in Kitchener.

This appointment involves presiding over criminal law matters and also involves travel within the regional boundaries as assigned by the Regional Senior Justice and/or the Chief Justice.

The minimum requirement to apply to be a Judge in the Ontario Court of Justice is ten years completed membership as a barrister and solicitor at the Bar of one of the Provinces or Territories of Canada.

All candidates must apply either by submitting 14 copies of the current (July 2017) completed Judicial Candidate Information Form in the first instance or by a short letter (14 copies) if the form has been submitted within the previous 12 months. Should you wish to change any information in your application, you must send in 14 copies of a fully revised Judicial Candidate Information Form.

If you wish to apply and need a current Judicial Candidate Information Form, or if you would like further information, please contact:

Judicial Appointments Advisory Committee
Tel: (416) 326-4060 Fax: (416) 212-7316
Website: www.ontariocourts.ca/ocj/jaac/

All applications, either sent by courier, mail or hand delivery, must be sent to:
Judicial Appointments Advisory Committee
c/o Ministry of Government Services Mail Delivery
77 Wellesley Street West, Room M2B-88
Macdonald Block, Queen’s Park
Toronto, Ontario, M7A 1N3

Applications must be on the current prescribed form and must be TYPEWRITTEN or COMPUTER GENERATED and RECEIVED BY 4:30 p.m. on Friday, August 3, 2018. CANDIDATES ARE REQUIRED TO PROVIDE 14 COPIES OF THEIR APPLICATION FORM OR LETTER. A Fax copy will be accepted only if 14 copies of the application or letter are sent concurrently by overnight courier. Applications received after this date WILL NOT be considered.

The Judiciary of the Ontario Court of Justice should reasonably reflect the diversity of the population it serves. Applications from members of equality-seeking groups are encouraged.

Dialogue on Licensing - Law Society of Ontario

Jul 06, 2018

Lawyer licensing is an integral part of the mandate of the Law Society of Ontario (LSO). Under its mandate, the LSO must regulate the profession in the public interest and ensure that lawyers meet standards of learning, professional competence, and professional conduct. In November 2016, Convocation (the governing body of the LSO) asked the Professional Development & Competence Committee (Committee) to develop long-term recommendations for the licensing process. To this end, the Committee developed a paper to serve as the basis for consultation with the professions and the public on appropriate pathways to licensure.

A copy of the consultation paper can be found at www.lsodialogue.ca. The submissions received will inform the Committee’s recommendations to Convocation regarding the lawyer licensing process in early 2019.

Currently, licensing candidates are required to pass both the barrister and solicitor licensing examinations and to complete a transitional training requirement focused on teaching candidates the necessary skills, knowledge and tasks for the legal profession. Currently, two main pathways satisfy the LSO’s transitional training requirements to become a lawyer – articling and the Law Practice Program (LPP), or Programme de pratique du droit (PPD).

In the face of an evolving landscape and increasing pressures on the licensing process, the Committee determined that the professions and the public should be consulted about the options listed below, including the possibility of changes to the transitional training requirement of the licensing process. In each of these options the current barrister and solicitor examinations would be maintained as a requirement for licensure.

The Committee is seeking feedback on the following options:

Option 1:  Current Model: The current two transitional training pathways would be retained, taking into account the fact that the current model is continuously adjusted to accommodate new developments.

Option 2: Current Model with Enhancements: The current two transitional training pathways would be retained, with enhancements. These enhancements include a requirement that candidates be paid at the statutory minimum wage, audits and greater oversight of articling and work placements. Candidates would be required to pass the barrister and solicitor licensing examinations as a prerequisite to transitional training and then pass a new skills examination in order to become licensed.

Option 3: Examination-Based Licensing: Candidates would be licensed after they first complete the barrister and solicitor licensing examinations and then the new skills examination. Transitional training, such as the requirement to complete articling or the LPP/PPD, would be eliminated as a requirement of licensure. The management of regulatory risk would shift to post-call and depend on the career path of the new licensee. Candidates who choose not to practise law and licensees 5 practising in a workplace of six or more lawyers would not be subject to any additional requirements. Licensees practising as sole practitioners or in a firm with fewer than six lawyers would also be required to complete a new practice essentials course and would be subject to audit within their first few years of practice.

Option 4: LPP for all Candidates: All licensing candidates would be required to complete the training course component of the LPP/PPD, without the work placement component. Candidates would also be required to successfully complete the Barrister and Solicitor examinations and the new Skills Examination.

Written comments by practitioners and Law Associations are welcome until October 26, 2018, and may be submitted to the LSO at www.lsodialogue.ca.

2018 Distinguished Solicitor Award Recipient

Jun 19, 2018
Congratulations to Michael J. McHugh of McHugh Whitmore LLP for being named the latest recipient of the Hamilton Law Association Distinguished Solicitor Award.

The purpose of this award is to honour a solicitor member of the Hamilton Law Association who has distinguished himself or herself throughout his or her career by exemplary service to our Association, to our profession and/or our community.

Michael has been practicing law since 1974 and was a founding Partner of the firm in 1975. Business Law and Estate Planning are the principal areas of Michael's practice and he has extensive experience providing legal advice and services to businesses, both new and established, and whether large or small. Client services include establishing new businesses, re-organizations, generational transfers, share and asset transfers, business financing, and all types of agreements, including shareholder agreements and franchise agreements. Michael has a number of clients with business operations in the United States and other foreign jurisdictions.

In the realm of Estate Planning Law, Michael has developed expertise in drafting Wills, including complex tax-planned Wills, Powers of Attorney, and Trusts, including family Trusts, and Alter Ego/Joint Spousal trusts. Michael also is experienced in advising parents of special needs children, including the use of Henson Trusts in estate planning.

Except for his time at law school, Michael has resided in the Hamilton community his entire life and during his career has been involved in many Hamilton community and charitable organizations, including Theatre Aquarius (Director and President); Hamilton and District Extend-A-Family (Founding Director and President); Community Living Hamilton (Director and President); Catholic Children’s' Aid Society of Hamilton (Director and President); and the Hamilton Law Association (Trustee). Michael resides in Stoney Creek with his wife Jane and they are enjoying their four adult children, and their grandchildren.

The Hamilton Law Association will present Michael with his award at the Corporate Commercial Law Seminar to be held at the Sheraton Hamilton Hotel – Centre/East Ballroom (116 King Street West, Hamilton) on Thursday, October 11th, 2018.  The presentation would take place at approximately 11:55 a.m. 

2018 Ed Orzel Award Nominations

Jun 18, 2018

You are invited to submit suggestions for the Ed Orzel Award. This award is named for the late Ed Orzel. Mr. Orzel was a great and fearless litigator. Throughout his career, he represented Plaintiffs and Defendants in a vast number of insurance claims around the Province of Ontario.

The purpose of this award is to honour a member of The Hamilton Law Association who has demonstrated excellence in trial advocacy for a single outstanding trial effort, or for a career in trial advocacy in any area of the law. The award will be presented at the 18th Annual Advocacy Conference on December 6th, 2018 at the Hamilton Convention Centre.

Please send your nominations to Marica Piedigrossi at mpiedigrossi@hamiltonlaw.on.ca along with any other material you wish to submit in support of the nomination, to The Hamilton Law Association no later than Tuesday, September 18th, 2018 at 12:00 noon.

Expansion of the civil claims online filing service

Jun 11, 2018

The civil claims online filing service has been expanded to enable the online filing of additional documents in a civil proceeding in the Superior Court of Justice. This expansion follows the successful province-wide launch of the service in November 2017.      

As of May 28, 2018, it will be possible to file the following documents online through the civil claims online portal (http://ontario.ca/civilclaims):

  • Statement of Defence (Form 18A)
  • Notice of Intent to Defend (Form 18B)
  • Statement of Claim filed following the issuance of a Notice of Action (Form 14D)
  • Proof of Service of documents that are filed online
  • Orders and Consents that are required in support of the filing of a document online

The online filing of these documents with the Superior Court of Justice has been authorized by subrule 4.05.1(2) of the Rules of Civil Procedure. The rules also clarify that it will not be necessary to provide the court with a paper copy of a document that was filed online unless the matter is proceeding to a hearing or conference and the party intends to rely on the document at the hearing (rule 4.05.1(6), in force May 28, 2018).

The civil claims online filing service will continue to:

  • allow the online filing of initiating documents:
    • Statement of Claim (Form 14A, 14B)
    • Notice of Action (Form 14C)
    • Affidavit of Litigation Guardian of a Plaintiff under a Disability
    • Request for Bilingual Proceedings
    • Consent to File Documents in French
  • email  court-issued Statements of Claim or Notices of Action;
  • allow online payment of court fees by credit card or Interac;
  • allow a user to track online filing fee payments, submissions and draft submissions; and
  • save work in progress and return to drafts in order to submit the request for filing at a later time.

If you are interested in arranging an online information session for your members about the expanded civil claims online filing service, please send an email to civilclaimsonline@ontario.ca.

Please share any comments about the service with Vaia Pappas, Director of the Operational Support Branch at vaia.pappas@ontario.ca.

W Patric Mackesy Acclaimed 76th President of HLA

Jun 04, 2018

Congratulations to W Patric Mackesy who was acclaimed the 76th President of The Hamilton Law Association at our Annual General Meeting held on May 31st, 2018!

W Patric Mackesy is a graduate of the University of Waterloo (St. Jerome's College) in 1965 and obtained his LLB (cum laude) from University of Ottawa in 1969. He articled for John White and after his call to the bar in 1971 joined the firm of White and Swaye. A partner in 1972, the firm evolved into Mackesy, Smye LLP, ...which specializes in personal injury work. W Patric Mackesy is a partner at Mackesy Smye LLP. His practice concentrates on real estate, real estate development, wills, powers of attorney, estates and corporate law. He also maintains a general litigation practice with particular emphasis on estate law. He had an extensive practice in family law and continues to act as a mediator relative to family law disputes.

Law has been very good to W Patric Mackesy allowing him to provide extensive volunteer hours in the community and both as a presenter at seminars and assisting in committee work (family, real estate & technology) through the Hamilton Law Association. Pat has served as Chair of the Real Estate, Collections & Library Excellence, and New Lawyers' Subcommittees of The Hamilton Law Association. Most recently, he has served as Vice-President, and before that as Secretary-Treasurer.

Upcoming Events

The Hamilton Law Association is pleased to present the following Upcoming Events:

September 27

Sub: 0.00; Prof: 1.00

LawPro Issues for Family Law

12:30-1:30 pm
Family Court, Courtroom #2
55 Main Street West
Hamilton, ON


For more information, please contact Karen Cooper at 905-522-1563, ext. 228.

October 11

Substantive: 3.0h
Professionalism: 1.0h

Corporate Commercial Law Seminar

9:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Sheraton Hotel Hamilton - Centre/East Ballroom
(116 King Street West, Hamilton)


For more information, please contact Kristjana Frani at 905-522-1563 ext. 233

October 23

Sub: 1.00 HR; Prof:  0.00 HR

A Family Lawyer's Guide to Reading Financial Statements

12:30-1:30 pm
Family Court, Courtroom #2
55 Main Street West, Hamilton


For more information, please contact Karen Cooper at 905-522-1563, ext 228.

October 25

Substantive: 1.75h

Estates & Trusts Workshop

12:15 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
HLA Library & 7th Floor Jurors Lounge - John Sopinka Courthouse
(45 Main Street East, Hamilton) 


For more information, please contact Michelle Hudecki at 905-522-1563

October 30

Sub: 1.5 for both sessions

Advanced Quicklaw & Lexis Practice Advisor Training

Quicklaw:  12:00-12:45 pm
Practice Advisor:  12:45-1:30 pm

John Sopinka Court House
Back of the Law Library - Suite 500


For more information, or to register, please contact the HLA library staff at 905-522-1563.

For information on these events and others, please visit our Upcoming Events page.

Recent Job Postings

September 18
Legal Assistant
Bertolo Law Firm
September 17
Law Clerk, Legal Assistant - Family Law
Dwyer Law Office
September 14
Corporate Commercial Assistant
McHugh Whitmore LLP
September 12
Habour Legal
September 07
Real Estate Law Clerk
Harvey Katz Law Office