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NSRLP Winter Closure

Here at the NSRLP we’ve been so busy this fall with new SRL resources, podcasts, blogs, and events like SRL Awareness Day, that we’ve realized we need to take a little breather to get caught up on lots of other important operational and administrative work. So, we’ll be closed from December 21st through January 31st – to first enjoy our holidays, and then to spend some time in the new year preparing for a busy and productive 2018. During [...]


SRL wins case on judicial bias

We often hear from self-represented litigants that they are concerned about impartiality and even conflicts of interest in their appearances before a particular judge. Unfortunately, this is symptomatic of a growing crisis of confidence in the justice system among some members of the public. A recent Alberta Court of Appeal decision (Carbone v. McMahon, 2017 ABCA 384) addresses this directly. SRL Angela Carbone had asked that the managing judge in her Alberta Queen’s Bench civil action be replaced, because she [...]


Introducing the SRL Case Law Database!

We are thrilled to bring you the first, preliminary, Report on the SRL Case Law Database, which we have been working on for most of the past year. The purpose of the SRL Case Law Database is to track the developing jurisprudence across Canada in cases that affect the positions of individuals appearing unrepresented. We are focusing on four themes: “vexatiousness”, cost awards, procedural fairness and accommodations. As the number of cases in the Database grows, we are expecting to [...]


New Resource for SRLs with Disabilities

We hear increasingly often from self-represented litigants who are also persons with disabilities (PWDs), struggling through the court system with an extra level of difficulty. These litigants are forced to deal with the “double-whammy” of navigating the justice system alone, while simultaneously facing the physical and systemic barriers that PWDs deal with on a daily basis. In an effort to begin to address the needs of this community, we have recently released our newest “primer” for SRLs: “Navigating the Justice [...]


Celebrating – and Using – the Pintea Decision

This week’s episode of Jumping Off the Ivory Tower, our social justice podcast, features Colin Feasby of Osler Hoskin & Harcourt’s Calgary office. Colin was the appellant’s lead counsel in Pintea v Johns (2017 SCC 23). In Pintea, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that self-represented litigants should not be treated in exactly the same way as a trained lawyer, because of the differences between them in terms of knowledge and power. Colin’s reflections on Pintea and predictions for [...]


Reading and Understanding Case Reports: Equipping Yourself with Tools for Effective Legal Research

One of NSRLP’s mandates is to develop practical and accessible resources to empower SRLs and better equip them on multiple fronts. We believe that if someone finds themselves without expert assistance, it is critical that they should be able to access the best self-help tools. It is no secret that preparing to present your own case in court without legal representation is daunting, as well as stressful. While legal research lays a crucial foundation for preparing one’s case, reading judicial [...]


SRL Awareness Day, October 4th 2017: Working Together for Change

Self-Represented Litigants Awareness Day, an NSRLP initiative first launched 3 years ago, is approaching fast. On October 4th, Windsor Law, Osgoode Hall Law School, the U of Ottawa Law School, Queens Law School, and Western Law will open their doors to local SRLs. SRL guests will sit in on law school classes, tour the law library, and participate in speaker panels dedicated to raising awareness about self-representation, sharing their experiences with both future lawyers and current practitioners. What is special [...]


SRL Awareness Day, October 4th 2017: More Partners, Same Goal

For the past two years, the NSRLP initiative Bring a SRL to Law School Day laid the foundation for a meaningful and positive coming together of local  SRLs who attended  law school classes that day, and law schools. This year the NSRLP is again coordinating this event, with some new partners, as well as a new name (watch for the #SRLAwarenessDay hashtag on Twitter and Facebook). We are excited to have Windsor, Ottawa, Osgoode, Queen’s, and Western’s law schools [...]


Windsor Law To Offer For-Credit SRL Coaching Course

This Fall, Windsor Law will offer the first ever for-credit SRL Conflict Coaching class in a North American law school, pairing Windsor Law students with SRLs via a clinic setting. This is a continuation of our work to develop a “coaching” model for SRLs, here focusing on the types of partnerships that can be provided by trained and supervised law students. Acting Dean Myra Tawfik says: “This is the first and only course of its kind that law students can attend [...]

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