Jonathan Rosenthal

Lawyer Bencher Candidate – Toronto Region

Priorities

Diversity
This incredibly important issue has proven very difficult for the LSO to solve. The solution does not lie in more studies to prove what we already know, but with the courage to take bold steps to ensure a more diverse governing body. This may include dedicated positions for historically disadvantaged groups whose membership in the profession has never been reflected in seats at Convocation. We still have a long way to go. We all must continue in every possible way imaginable to ensure full equality for all licensees. The Statement of Principles is a very small step in the right direction. In my opinion, the lawyers who oppose this initiative do not understand our profession or our public responsibilities.

Access to Justice
The expansion of paralegal scope is NOT the solution. The LSO has taken a much stronger leadership role in regard to Legal Aid and is going to have to fight much much harder in view of the the recent cuts. And in doing so the LSO must continue support the certificate system. These cuts are simply DISGRACEFUL.

Advertising
Hiring a lawyer is not like buying a big screen television. I was member of the Advertising Fee Arrangements Issues Working Group. Our work was a good start. Our job is not nearly finished. The new rules now need significant enforcement to stop those licensees who continue to violate our rules and bring our profession into disrepute. I hope to continue the work.

Discipline
The formal discipline process should be reserved for cases in which the public is put at risk or the conduct complained of brings our profession into disrepute. Members who lie, cheat and steal should be dealt with harshly and expeditiously. In other cases alternatives such as ADR, mentoring and restorative justice should be used. I have served on the Proceeding Authorization Committee since my election. We have made some headway but still, have a long way to go.

Background

I have practiced criminal law as a sole practitioner ever since I was called to the bar in 1989. I am a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. I am a professor adjunct at Osgoode Hall where I am the co-director of both trial advocacy and the criminal intensive programs. I also teach trial advocacy to lawyers and law students in both Canada and the U.S. I have proudly served as a Law Society Bencher since 2015. In my first term as bencher I served on a number of important committees including Access to Justice, Government and Public Affairs, Litigation (Presently Chair), Paralegal Standing, Proceedings Authorization, Professional Development and Competence, Professional Regulation (Vice-Chair 2016-2018). I am also a Trustee of the Law Society Foundation.

Enjoy this candidate’s “Of Counsel” interview while you read more about them!

Candidates I support

There are many awesome candidates I will be voting for during this election but will not support any candidate who does not fully endorse the LSO’s statement of principles.

Something the LSO does that it should stop doing

Something the LSO doesn't do that it should start doing

website

www.jonathanrosenthal.ca

email

jrosenthal@bondlaw.net

social media

twitter jonnyrosenyyz

All Candidates were invited to comment on any or all of the following topics

Expand to read Jonathan's views
The expansion of paralegal scope is NOT the solution. Too many litigants are unable to afford a lawyer and I have seen first hand the challenges that unrepresented litigants face in the justice system. The LSO must continue engaging with all levels of government for better legal aid funding and by working with the courts to develop procedures which specifically address the needs of self-represented litigants. LSO must strongly support the legal aid certificate system.
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The LSO still needs more reform. The LSO board is far too large compared to the boards of other self-regulated professional bodies. The key is to reduce the size of the board while increasing and ensuring diversity of our board members at the same.
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There is no doubt that the cost of legal education has skyrocketed and that law students are graduating with massive debt. This should trouble anyone within the legal profession. Despite what some candidates are saying about reducing legal fees, the bottom line is the LSO does NOT have the authority to regulate law schools or tuition. Of equal importance, law schools are and must remain independent of the LSO. I support any inititiatives that brings all of the stakeholders together to jointly address this issue while maintaining independence between law schools and the LSO.
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The Statement of Principles is a very small step in the right direction. In my opinion, the lawyers who oppose this initiative do not understand our profession or our public responsibilities.

Artificial Intelligence in Legal Service Delivery

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Like most areas of new technology we must both keep an open mind while at the same time ensure our mandate of protecting the public interest is maintained.
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I strongly supported the LPP and urged my bencher colleagues to do so as well. I was also a LPP instructor. In doing so it became clear to me that many racialized students would never get called to the bar without this important program.
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I support the provision of unbundled legal services. However, this alone is not the solution to access to justice.
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Entity based regulation is entirely different than compliance based regulation. It appears that these two entirely different issues have been co-mingled. I fully support entity based regulation. As the 2016 task force reported, “it is not realistic to treat law or paralegal firms as mere collections of autonomous individual practitioners who happen to share a firm name.” Regulation of firms or associations is necessary. I am far from sold on compliance based regulation and putting further regulatory requirements and filings on licensees
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We must embrace technology and ensure the LSO offers continuing education necessary to maintaining competence within the profession.

Reconciliation and Indigenous Communities

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Despite the principles enunciated in cases like Gladue and Ipeelee the percentage of indigenous prisoners has not been reduced. I think the LSO must work harder to ensuring that indigenous communities have increased access to lawyers and that the LSO continues to push for better education so that aboriginal issues are better understood within the profession.
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The only place I want to see ABS is on my car. Non-lawyer ownership of law firms is terrible for both the profession and more importantly the public. Based on the studies to date and jurisdictions that allowed for ABS there was no improvement in ensuring access to justice through ABS. All of the empirical evidence suggests that we should be strongly against expanding non-lawyer ownership of law firms in Ontario.
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Hiring a lawyer is not like buying a big screen television. The new advertising rules that I helped to create during my last term as bencher need education and enforcement to protect the public from licensees who violate the rules and bring our profession into disrepute. I hope to continue this work during my next term as bencher.

Specific Enhancements to Licensing System

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The practice of law is getting more and more complex. As part of my McMurtry Fellowship I am researching Integrated Practice Curriculums where law students could graduate in three years, with a specific area of practice concentration and not be required to take the LPP or article. The day of the generalist is long gone but what to do from there is much more difficult.
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There are no shortage of CPD programs offered by a number of different organizations. The LSO CPD courses are superb, well attended and fairly priced programs. There is no reason I can think of for the LSO to stop providing these top shelf educational programs.
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To expand such programs as Member Assistance Program, the Practice Management Helpline, the Coach Advisory Network and the Parental Leave Program among others.
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I have great sympathy to anyone suffering from mental health or addiction issues. We must continue to support the Member Assistance Program which is currently offered to all licencees, students and their families for free. Being a member of both Professional Regulation and Proceedings Authorization I have seen first hand the huge steps the LSO has taken in this direction. It is a difficult challenge to both protect the public while dealing with capacity issues.
Expand to read Jonathan's views
The LSO funding priorities should follow the mandate of the LSO under the Law Society Act. Our obligation is to ensure those who practice law or provide legal services do so in a competent manner, advance the cause of justice and rule of law, facilitate access to justice, and protect the public while acting in a timely, open and efficient manner.

Diversity and Inclusivity Priorities

Expand to read Jonathan's views
This is an incredibly important issue and the solution does not lie in more studies to prove what we already know, but with the courage to take bold steps to ensure a more diverse governing body. This may include dedicated positions for historically disadvantaged groups whose membership in the profession has never been reflected in seats at Convocation. We still have a long way to go. We all must continue in every possible way imaginable to ensure full equality for all licensees. The statement of principles is one very small step in the right direction. In my opinion, the lawyers who oppose this initiative do not understand our profession or our public responsibilities.

Scope of practice for paralegals and non-licensees

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Expansion of scope and practice by non-licensees is NOT the answer to access to justice. If there is an area of practice that lawyers do NOT effectively provide service in AND paralegals or others can competently provide such service I would not be opposed to such expansion. I would support expanding what law students, articling students, paralegals and other non-licensees can do under the direct supervision of a lawyer.

FOLA asks: Thoughts on Funding Staffed Local Law Libraries

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I fully support the funding of staffed local law libraries.

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ORGANIZATIONS
• Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers
• Canadian Association of Black Lawyers
• Association of Law Officers of the Crown
• Ontario Criminal Lawyers’ Association

INDIVIDUALS

Sheila Block, Partner, Torys
Paul Schabas, Partner, Blakes, Past Treasurer Law Society of Ontario
Malcolm Mercer, Partner McCarthys, Treasurer
Gerald Chan, Partner, Stockwoods, Co-President, Federation Asian Canadian Lawyers
Brian Greenspan, Partner Greenspan, Humphrey
Mark Sandler, Partner, Cooper, Sandler, Former Bencher
Lori Thomas, Barrister, President, Canadian Association of Black Lawyers
Omar Ha-Redeye, Fleet Street Law
Alan Lenczner, Q.C., Partner, Lenczner Slaght Royce Smith Griffin
Frank Addario, Partner Addario Law Group, former President of Criminal Lawyers’ Association
David Porter, Partner McCarthys
Brian Gover, Partner Stockwoods, President Advocates Society
Jacquline Horvath, Partner Spark Law, Bencher
Daniel Brown, Lead Counsel Daniel Brown Law
Andrew Spurgeon, Partner, Ross and McBride, Bencher
Isfahan Merali, Senior Counsel, Consent and Capacity Board, Bencher
Sandra Barton, Partner, Gowlings
Michael Lacy, Partner, Brauti Thorning, President Ontario Criminal Lawyers Association
Adam Wagman, Partner Howie, Sachs, Past President, OTLA
Victoria Watkins, Executive Director, Osgoode Professional Development, Osgoode Hall Law
Scott Maidment, McMillan LLP, Vice President, Advocates Society
Frank Walwyn, Partner, Weir and Foulds
Julie Hannaford, J.K. Hannaford, Barrister
Professor Jim Seckinger, University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana
Brian Heller, Partner Heller Rubel
Antonio Di Domenico, Partner Faskens
Teresa Donnelly, Crown Attorney, Goderich, Bencher
David Howell, Partner Gowlings, Bencher
Dirk Derstine, Partner, Derstine, Penman, President Toronto Lawyers Association
Professor Trevor Farrow, Associate Dean Osgoode Hall Law School
David Humphrey, Partner Greenspan Humphrey
Lonnie Rosen, Partner, Rosen Sunshine
Michael Watson, Partner Gowlings
Martha McCarthy, Marth McCarthy & Company Family Lawyers
Patrick Ducharme, Partner Ducharme Fox Lawyers
Hartley Nathan Q.C., Partner Minden Gross
Lisa Borsook, Partner Weir and Foulds
Frank Gomberg, Partner Teplitsky, Colson
Joseph Neuberger, Partner Neuberger and Partners, Past President Toronto Lawyers Association
Daniel Gutman, Counsel, Constitutional Law Branch, and Director, ALOC Board of Directors
Anthony Moustacalis, Barrister, Past President of Ontario Criminal Lawyers’ Association
Arish Khoorshed, Assistant Crown Attorney
Sarah Shaikh, Crown Counsel, Ministry Attorney General
Jean Iu, Counsel, Office of Independent Police Review Director
Jeremy Lum Danson, Associate Ross Barristers
Paul Tait, Crown Attorney, Newmarket
Colin Stevenson, Stevenson, Whelton
John Struthers, Barrister
Paul Copeland, Barrister, former bencher
Evan Green, Partner Green and Spiegal
William Kaplan, lawyer, arbitrator, mediator and author, former bencher
Max Gotlieb, Partner, Cassels Brock
Alfred Kwinter, Partner Singer Kwinter
Glen Sandberg, Partner, Sandberg, Williams
Jared Scwartz, Partner Folgers
Michael Bryant