April 3, 2020 – 8:46 AM -Central South Expansion Notice – effective April 6, 2020

Sent on behalf of Regional Senior Justice Arrell –

Good morning Central South Bar Associations,

To protect all court users, staff and judiciary during the COVID-19 crisis, all but urgent hearings in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (SCJ) were suspended, effective March 17, 2020.  Today, Chief Justice Morawetz and all eight Regional Senior Justices issued new Notices to the Profession, which will expand the SCJ’s virtual court operations in each region, effective April 6, 2020

Attached is the Central South Expansion notice.

All SCJ Notices to the Profession relating to COVID-19 may be accessed at: https://www.ontariocourts.ca/scj/notices-and-orders-covid-19/ 

Yours very truly,

HSA

Harrison S. Arrell

Regional Senior Justice

45 Main St.E., Suite 721

Hamilton, Ontario L8N 2B7

Te: 905 645 5323

Fax: 905 645 5374

cc. Central South trial coordinators

April 3, 2020 – 7:39 AM – Expansion of SCJ’s virtual court operations in each region, effective April 6, 2020 -Notices from Chief Justice Morawetz

Justice partners, members of the bar and media,

To protect all court users during the COVID-19 crisis, all but urgent hearings in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (SCJ) were suspended, effective March 17, 2020.  Today, Chief Justice Morawetz and all eight Regional Senior Justices issued new Notices to the Profession.  They expand the SCJ’s virtual court operations in each region, effective April 6, 2020. 

Attached are two Provincial Notices to the Profession from Chief Justice Morawetz (Criminal and Civil/Family).  They address a variety of issues including emailing material to the court, service by email, media access to court proceedings, and gowning.  They include links to the eight Regional Notices to the Profession. The eight Regional Notices identify which matters may be heard in each region, and the process to have a matter heard. 

Also attached is a memo from the Office of the Chief Justice that provides a summary of the Notices to the Profession issued today, for information purposes only.

All SCJ Notices to the Profession relating to COVID-19 may be accessed at: https://www.ontariocourts.ca/scj/notices-and-orders-covid-19/ or on FOLA’s website.

Katie W. Robinette

Executive Director

FOLA.ca

647-280-9340

Need answers to COVID-19 issues regarding the practice of law?  CLICK HERE.

April 1, 2020 – 11:57 AM- Weekly Update – Sector Call from today & Law Society of Ontario responses to association members’ questions

Attached is our third weekly update re: COVID-19 & the legal profession.  As a reminder, for the past two weeks, our calls with the Courts, MAG, the LSO, and other provincial law associations were daily.  As of this week, these calls are weekly occurrences and take place on Wednesday mornings.  As such, you will be getting ONLY the weekly updates which are also posted on our website here.

Also attached is a document with some responses from the LSO to questions from your members that related to the Law Society.  This is not on our website.

All the best,  Katie

Katie W. Robinette

Executive Director

FOLA.ca

647-280-9340

Need answers to COVID-19 issues regarding the practice of law?  CLICK HERE.

April 1, 2020 -10:07 AM – Real Estate Update

Dear Real Estate Representatives, Presidents and Library Staff,

In an effort to keep real estate lawyers updated with the ever-changing situation, we have further information to be shared with the real estate lawyers in your association.

 

LRO Notice to Clients

The provincial government has issued a Notice to Land Registration System Clients confirming that Teraview continues to run for both search and registration, OnLand continues to run for search and various request functions, and that the all land registry offices are scheduled to be open from Monday to Friday from 9:30am to 12:00pm.

The Notice can be found in English and French on our website here.

 

Law Society CPD

The replay of the Law Society free audio webcast from Friday, March 27 entitled “Your Real Estate Practice and the COVID-19 Pandemic: What You Need to Know Right Now” is now available.

The link to the audio program is here and the link to the resource materials is here.

Lawyer Done Deal Remote Signing

Lawyer Done Deal has created a remote signing portal for lawyers where you can post documents to clients, host virtual closing meetings and view client signing activity, all while meeting social distancing and legal obligations. This portal is being offered free to all lawyers, whether or not you already have a LDD or RealtiWeb account. 

They are also working on including a client verification element that will be Fintrac compliant. More information is available on the LDD website here.

Expiry of Drivers Licences and Passports

 

What happens if a client’s ID has recently expired or will expire this month?  Renewals of passports and driver’s licences are currently suspended, so clients will not be able to get new ones while this pandemic continues. 

The Ontario government has extended the validity and expiration date of driver’s licences and Ontario Photo Cards. See here for more details.  We think this means that you should still be able to accept an Ontario driver’s licences as valid identification, even if the expiry date has passed.

Information on the Government of Canada Passport Services can be found here.

Tarion

A new Tarion Advisory was published on March 26 in response to the Emergency Order passed by the provincial government suspending limitation periods.  Tarion has suspended all warranty claim submission deadlines – the 30 day, year end, second year, major structural defect, delayed closing, financial loss and deposit claims deadlines have all been suspended.  Once the Emergency Order has been lifted, homeowners will receive a reasonable extension to submit their forms.  Tarion has also suspended timelines relating to builder repair periods, except for emergencies or health and safety issues.

The March 26, 2020 Tarion Advisory can be found here

 

Letter to MCAP

FOLA’s letter of March 26, 2020 regarding MCAP’s recent decision to close all refinance transactions through either FCT or FNF is posted on our website here

Working Group Fees, Disbursements & Taxes Calculator

Given the additional work that lawyers and their staff are doing in order to complete transactions during these challenging circumstances, many lawyers might be reviewing the amount of legal fees they are charging.

The Working Group on Lawyers and Real Estate has a Suggested Fee Schedule, which can be found here

In addition, they have now added a Fees, Disbursements & Taxes Calculator on their website which can be accessed here.

This new calculator does many things, simply by answering a few questions. 

Once you enter the value of the transaction, if you indicate your quoted fee, it will compare it to the suggested fee schedule, as a % of all costs and to the HST on the real estate agent’s fees, which is great for marketing.

It will also:

  • calculate the LTT
  • calculate the MLTT (for Toronto properties)
  • calculate the first-time homebuyer rebates for LTT & MLTT
  • calculate the NRST (for GGH properties)
  • estimate the disbursements (suggestions provided but fully editable on the disbursements tab)
  • calculate for a purchase, a sale or a mortgage-only transaction
  • provide a personalized 2-page printout of the summary and estimates disbursements, which can be reviewed with or emailed to clients

If and when we receive further information of interest to the real estate bar, we will pass it along.

Merredith MacLennan and Eldon Horner

FOLA Real Estate Co-Chairs

Please note: The information provided herein is of a general nature only and is not intended to provide legal advice.

April 1, 2020 – 8:31 AM -Subject: LAO Emergency Certificate Coverage for Temporary Absence Passes

FOLA continues to engage, as a stakeholder, along with others, to negotiate and advocate on behalf of the LAO  practising lawyer.  

Below is the newest successful advancement of expanded LAO services to be engaged during COVID-19.

The email from Marcus Pratt, as forwarded herewith, is self explanatory but should you have questions or additional commentary, please, reach out to me:  terrylbrandon@sympatic.ca.

These materials are also located on our website along with regular updated COVID -19 practice information and can be found at : https://fola.ca/legal-aid

Wishing you stay well.

Terry L. Brandon

FOLA LAO Chair 

Subject: Emergency Certificate Coverage for Temporary Absence Passes

Good afternoon:

Please feel free to share this information with your members.

As part of LAO’s continuing response to COVID-19, lawyers will be able to apply for legal aid coverage on behalf of in‑custody clients requesting temporary absence permits.

A new application form will be available on our website by Friday, April 3, 2020.

This follows the Ontario government’s announcement that it would expand the use of temporary absence permits by allowing authorized inmates to be absent from an institution unescorted for a period of 72 hours or longer.

Lawyers may immediately start work related to obtaining TAPs on your clients’ behalf, but you must submit an application, once available, to receive coverage.

How it will work

·        After downloading and filling in the application form, email it to the address provided.

·        We will process it without legal and financial testing, or merit consideration.

·        Each application requires that the lawyer attest to the following conditions to obtain coverage:

  • The inmate is not serving a sentence for a violent offence and is not classified as a maximum security offender
  • The inmate will not, by reoffending, present an undue risk to society during the absence

·        We will issue a legal aid certificate in advance. Signed consent and declaration forms may be submitted after May 29, 2020, where required.

See https://www.legalaid.on.ca/in-briefs/legal-aid-ontario-to-provide-coverage-for-temporary-absence-permit-tap-requests/

Take care and be safe.

Marcus

March 31, 2020 – 8:37 AM- FOLA’s April Newsletter – the COVID-19 Edition – full of links, resource, tips and more! Plus – the latest responses to member questions (attached)

Please find below link to our April 2020 Newsletter with all the important links to information your members need, tips and resources for lawyers during the epidemic, news about our Awards (note – the deadline has been extended!), and more!

Here’s the link: https://bit.ly/3dJC1QQ

It’s also available on our website here: https://fola.ca/fola-newsletters

And attached is the latest Response Update from the SCJ to association members’ questions.

Katie W. Robinette

Executive Director

FOLA.ca

647-280-9340

Need answers to COVID-19 issues regarding the practice of law?  CLICK HERE.

March 30, 2020 – 11:04 AM – FOLA MCAP Letter/MCAP Notice

FOLA source file

Dear Real Estate Representatives, Presidents and Library staff,

Attached please find a letter from the FOLA Real Estate Committee relative to MCAP’s recent decision to remove lawyers from refinancing matters.  The link to the MCAP notice can be found at

https://bit.ly/33VA6nR

Merredith MacLennan and Eldon Horner

FOLA Real Estate Co-Chairs

Please note: The information provided herein is of a general nature only and is not intended to provide legal advice.

March 30, 2020 – 8:29 AM -FOLA’s Weekly Update

Please find attached a copy of our Weekly Update (March 23-17). 

Have a great week!!

Katie

Katie W. Robinette

Executive Director

FOLA.ca

647-280-9340

Need answers to COVID-19 issues regarding the practice of law?  CLICK HERE.

March 28, 2020 – 5:42 PM – Important Notice to Court Users Regarding Ontario Court of Justice Proceedings During COVID-19

March 28, 2020

Good afternoon: 

I am writing on behalf of Chief Justice Maisonneuve.

This communication is to advise that effective March 28, 2020 the Ontario Court of Justice is limiting access to courthouses. People should not attend Ontario Court of Justice courthouses unless they fall in one of the exceptions outlined in the attached notice.

This decision is part of the collective efforts to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus and to protect the health and safety of court users, justice system participants and members of the public.

The attached notices provide more details about remote attendance by counsel and/or litigants (including in-custody accused), how to deal with requests for access to court proceedings and how to file court documents for urgent matters by email.

Thank you,

Matt McGavock for OCJ Communications Officer

March 27, 2020 – 3:56 PM – Message from Chief Justice to Legal Community in Ontario

The attached letter from Chief Justice Morawetz is hot off the presses:  “the scope of events that may be heard remotely by the Superior Court of Justice will expand, effective April 6, 2020”.

As has been mentioned in the past couple of daily updates, FOLA’s been working with the Ontario Bar Association, the Advocates’ Society, the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association, the Federation of Ontario Law Associations, and the Canadian Defence Lawyers in an attempt to prioritize judicial resources available for civil matters. The attached joint submission, prepared by the OTLA, was provided to the Courts today to assist the judiciary while they consider expanding operations.

Also attached is today’s letter from Chief Justice Morawetz the Profession regarding the expanding of operations.

Katie W. Robinette

Executive Director

FOLA.ca

647-280-9340

Need answers to COVID-19 issues regarding the practice of law?  CLICK HERE.