Wednesday, May 20, 2015

New Legal Information Online May 2015


New on Clicklaw

Buying Defective Goods The Canadian Bar Association, BC Branch (CBABC) 2015

For the Public in BC: Privacy and Access Rights Information for Individuals Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for BC, 2015

I'm doing my own legal research as a self-represented litigant Clicklaw Common Question, May 2015

Income Assistance Application Process for People with Disabilities Disability Alliance BC [6 pp PDF] 2015

Introducing the CanLII Primer from the National Self-Represented Litigants Project  Clicklaw Blog, April 8, 2015

New Fact Sheet on Refusing Health Care: What are my Rights? Clicklaw Blog, April 9, 2015

Online Dispute Resolution in BC: Case Study #1 Clicklaw Blog May 13, 2015

People with Disabilities on Reserve: The PWD Designation Disability Alliance BC [16 pp PDF] 2014

Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity Refugee Claims Out/Law Immigration Legal Services, 2015

Social Insurance Number (SIN) Privacy Fact Sheet Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada 2014

Social Security Tribunal Disability Alliance BC [42 pp PDF] 2015

Your Child's Trust Fund: FAQ Public Guardian and Trustee of BC [8pp PDF] 2014

Blog posts and journal articles 

Asked & Answered: How do I stop a bailiff/possession order? The Stream Blog,Courthouse Libraries BC, February 24, 2015

Asked & Answered: Where can I find information on an arrest warrant? The Stream Blog, Courthouse Libraries BC, March 16, 2015

Asked & Answered: How can I find out who owns apartment buildings in BC? The Stream Blog, Courthouse Libraries BC, March 9, 2015

Common Myths When Planning for Your Future Ask Joanne, Nidus Personal Planning Resource Centre and Registry, April 2015

Essential Services and the Right to Strike LawNow, May 7, 2015

Family Law Agreements and Independent Legal Advice JP Boyd on Family Law, March 2015

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Dial-A-Law Scripts Now Available as a Clicklaw Wikibook


Clicklaw, Courthouse Libraries BC and LawMatters are very pleased to announce that the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) BC Branch’s long-serving collection of Dial-A-Law scripts are now available as a Clicklaw Wikibook. The scripts join a growing library of content from other key producers of public legal information, including People’s Law School, TRAC, BC CEAS and others including some authors Courthouse Libraries BC helped to publish, such as Cliff Thorstenson and John-Paul Boyd. The collection of scripts will be printed in a 500+ page book to be shipped to public libraries in BC, at no cost to the libraries, in conjunction with the LawMatters program.

Courthouse Libraries BC and the CBA BC announced this news by formal press release on April 14th, during Law Week. The announcement is exciting since Dial-A-Law scripts are perhaps the longest-surviving example of the BC legal profession's dedication to helping the public with free legal information. The scripts cover over 130 legal topics, and have existed in various formats for over 30 years. Dial-A-Law started in 1983 with help from the BC Law Foundation and its scripts have been edited by volunteer lawyers ever since. More information about the various ways you can access Dial-A-Law is on Clicklaw’s page for the service.

Yesterday's announcement is significant because now the scripts are even more accessible. Clicklaw Wikibooks are able to keep legal information in a single spot so that editors and lawyers can update it, but also let the end user choose whether to print, read online, or otherwise export the content in a way that meets their needs. 

Users can download whole contents, or only portions, of Clicklaw Wikibooks in PDF or EPUB formats. They can order a printed book for cost, or they can of course read it online. The open-source nature of the Mediawiki publishing platform means it is a tool that is affordable to implement, but also well-supported by a community of developers who believe in open access and the democratization of information. 

CEO for Courthouse Libraries BC, Johanne Blenkin, says in the joint release "many continue to rely on community libraries and printed materials, so keeping quality legal information in print is also important. Clicklaw Wikibooks is about helping content partners offer their up-to-date legal information in a range of digital and physical formats.”

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Library Events and Resources for Make a Will Week and Law Week 2015





Public libraries are actively participating in the upcoming Make a Will Week and Law Week 2015, with events running from April 6 to April 28.





The following libraries are offering free public law education classes on a variety of topics:
  • Burnaby:
      McGill - Power of Attorney, Wills and Estates
      Bob Prittie - Immigration Law
  • North Vancouver City- Wills and Estates
  • Port Moody - I'm an Executor, Now What?
  • Richmond:
       Main Library - Employment Law
       Brighouse - Consumer Law (Mandarin and English)
  • Surrey:
      Fleetwood - Power of Attorney and Being an Executor
      Cloverdale - Wills and Estates
      Guildford - Landlord and Tenant Law
      Ocean Park - Wills and Estates
      Semiahmoo - Power of Attorney and Being an Executor
  • Thompson Nicola: (not currently on the Law Week list; call (250) 372-5145 for details)
      Kamloops Downtown - Wills and Estates
      Merritt - Wills and Estates
  • Vancouver Island Regional:
      Chemainus - Wills and Estates
      Cowichan - Wills and Estates
      Ladysmith - Wills and Estates
      Nanaimo - Wills and Estates
      Parksville - Wills and Estates  
  • West Vancouver - Wills and Estates
Other Law Week events that include mock trials and community displays in 11 communities around the province are listed on this locations  page, and the province-wide Dial a Lawyer event will take place April 18.

Courthouse Libraries BC has created pages of wills resources for lawyers, community workers and the public - read all about it on the Clicklaw Blog post today.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

New Legal Information Online February 2015


New on Clicklaw:


50 Years of Freedom: A Festschrift Celebration for the Golden Anniversary of the BCCLA BC Civil Liberties Association [121 pp PDF] 2014




Aboriginal Prisoners’ Spiritual Accommodation  West Coast Prison Justice Society  [11 pp PDF] 2014

BC Hydro Advocacy Factsheet BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre (BCPIAC) 2014

Coping with the Courtroom: Essential Tips and Information for Self-Represented Litigants The National Self-Represented Litigants Project [25 pp PDF] 2014

I want to contest or dispute a will. What can I do?  Clicklaw Common Question, 2015

If You Have A No Contact Order Made Against You  Legal Services Society [factsheet] 2014

More than we can afford: The costs of mandatory minimum sentencing BC Civil Liberties Association [86 pp PDF] 2014

New Law Focuses on Aboriginal Matrimonial Rights on Reserve Clicklaw Blog, January 29, 2015

Property Assessment Complaints: The Complaint Process Step-by-Step  BC Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development [18 pp PDF] 2012

Your Rights: First Nations Court Legal Services Society [web page) ]2014

Workers' Advisers Office Factsheets BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training

Other new web resources: 

DecisionMaking Checklist  Alzheimer Society of BC [4pp PDF] 2012



Videos:


Criminalization of HIV Non-Disclosure in Canada Video Series Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network [23 videos, 1-3 min] 2014

Life, Death and the Law Global News [video, 20 min] January 24, 2015 


Blog posts and journal articles:


Can I sell the house if my spouse is incapable? Nidus - Ask Joanne, September 25, 2014



What, Why and Where: Untangling Jurisdiction in Family Law  By John-Paul Boyd, LawNow, 
October 6, 2014


Monday, November 3, 2014

I’m Mad! Can we talk? Mediate BC Events in Public Libraries


Mediate BC Executive Director Kari Boyle at VPL Central
Continuing on our theme of partnering with other community groups, the LawMatters program collaborated with Mediate BC for its province-wide Conflict Resolution Week October 11 - 18. Public libraries in seven communities around the province signed up to host a public event about mediation, including Vancouver, Squamish, Whistler, North Vancouver City, White Rock, Ladysmith and North Vancouver District. Other events may still take place after the week in various communities.

The launch for the week was held at Vancouver Public Library's Central Branch, where Executive Director Kari Boyle demonstrated how mediation is effective, affordable and timely. Her slides are available here, and include a slide showing a useful cost comparison, see below.                                            
Attendance numbers for the events were not high, but organizers gathered some valuable learnings, such as:
  • Ladysmith Library was able to draw the largest audience, with 12 members of the public attending their event. Library Manager Stephen Warren commented that "The response was very good and we would welcome the chance to host again in the future. We prepared a press release for the local paper to announce the event – I think this had the biggest impact as most attendees were not regular library users." 
  • The mediator presenter in Ladysmith also posted the event to a number of publications, which likely helped to drive attendance.  
  • Public libraries need lots of advance notice to host events; some explained that 2 - 3 months or more is preferable. 
  • Even with a small attendance, considering this is the first year this initiative was launched, the mediator presenters felt the sessions were very worthwhile to do.
Mediate BC hopes to repeat the Conflict Resolution Week again next year, and plan to incorporate what they have learned, including a sample promotional piece all libraries can use.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Public Libraries and Nidus Personal Planning Events


Nidus event at VPL Central Library - photo courtesy of Nidus
                                                   
In September, the LawMatters program tried something new: we partnered with the community group Nidus Personal Planning Resource Centre and Registry to celebrate their Personal Planning Month.

We asked public libraries to host some Nidus events, and 9 libraries signed up for a series of 15 public events, including presentations and webinars for the public. Over 400 people attended the events that explained Representation Agreements and other planning tools.

The launch of the series was held at Vancouver Public Library and attracted over 250 people. A panel of speakers included an innovative example of using audience participation to get the message across. Watch the video of “Gonna Get a Rep Agreement” sung to “Sentimental Journey” – it was a crowd hit!


Capacity crowds also attended presentations by Nidus staff at the Burnaby, West Vancouver and Richmond Public Libraries. 

Libraries throughout the province were able to host several Nidus webinars for the public. The webinars brought crowds as large as 50 people to libraries in New Westminster, Kitimat, Victoria, Greenwood, North Vancouver District and Whistler. Nidus presenter Joanne Taylor encouraged questions from the audience through virtual chat. 

Comments from webinar host librarians included:

“Feedback from the audience overall was very positive, and several people said that Joanne's presentation was easy to follow given how complex the subject was. I especially appreciated Joanne showing her face briefly to say "hello" and put a face to the voice.”

“We had 50 people attend our webinar. I didn’t have any technological glitches reported to me, which is good! I think there was a fair bit of community interest in this webinar, so I’m glad we were able to host. There was a lot of interest in the next webinar about Representation Agreements.”

“Audience response - all were appreciative. One Credit Union employee attended and said she had never heard of Nidus, and that the info would be useful to her at work--I'm guessing maybe they get requests to access accounts by family or friends of people with dementia and now can direct them to Nidus to get a representation agreement.”

Librarians also collected some feedback from patrons:


"This was an extremely useful program. I was unaware of Representation Agreements and signed up for the workshop because I am thinking of updating my will. This workshop provided invaluable information on a topic everyone should be aware of. As a person now retired and feeling the pinch of a lower income, to be able to access this legal information at no charge was most helpful.”

“I appreciated being given information from a legitimate source in an environment I trusted. No selling or unwanted advice given! I would be interested in attending similar events."


"I found the discussion session very useful. It was much better than watching a webinar on my own."

Nidus offers a regular monthly series of free webinars, and any library can register for future events for the public on the presentation page.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

New Legal Information Online August 2014


New on Clicklaw Blog

Do It Yourself Separation Guide Now Available

Supreme Court Family Law Forms: New Fillable Forms from the Legal Services Society

Social Security Tribunal for CPP Disability



New or Updated Resources on Clicklaw

The Legal landscape: A Scan of Public Legal Education and Information materials for Non-Profits People's Law School and Artists’ Legal Outreach, 2013

Social Assistance on Reserve in BC Legal Services Society, 2014

Your rights on reserve; A legal tool-kit for Aboriginal Women in BC Atira Women's Resource Society, 2014

Other new web resources:

BC Hear the Child Society (in family justice decision-making) [website]

Canada's Law on Spam and Other Electronic Threats [website] Industry Canada

Collaborative Divorce Vancouver [website]

M├ętis Law in Canada  Jean Teillet, Pape, Salter & Teillet [PDF 331 pp] 2013

Settlement Smarts For Self-­‐Represented Litigants; How To Use Settlement Processes Knowledgeably and Effectively Dr Julie Macfarlane, National Self-Represented Litigants Project [PDF 22 pp] July 2014

Blogs and articles

Child Abduction and AMBER Alerts JP Boyd on Family Law Blog, July 2014

Copyright Flowchart: Can I Use It? Yes? No? If This… Then… Langwitches Blog June 2014

Does a notice of civil claim or a petition ever expire? Courthouse Libraries BC Asked & Answered January 2014

Human Rights of Transgender Persons Linda McKay-Panos, LawNow, July2014

Is gun ownership a legal right in Canada? Terry Pedwell, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), July 31, 2014 

Nidus (personal planning) and My Voice (Advance Care Planning) (How Do They Differ?) Nidus Personal Planning Resource Centre and Registry, Ask Joanne, July 2014

Online Government Information: Access Kristina Oldenburg, BC Library Association Browser, Volume 6, no. 3 (2014)

Would you recommend a Will kit? Nidus Personal Planning Resource Centre and Registry, Ask Joanne, May 2014