François Baril

Lawyer Bencher Candidate – East Region

Priorities

Our profession is facing societal and technological upheavals, i.e. New service models, AI, big data and block chain technologies. These developments present opportunities for lawyers, clients and the administration of justice but also carry risk. They require new skill, new standards, and adapted best practices. The LSO needs to proactively guide the profession through this evolving landscape and develop the appropriate regulatory framework and member support.

Comme président de l’AJEFO, j’ai eu le privilège d’inaugurer le Centre d’information juridique de l’Ontario et de contribuer à l’essor d’une association dynamique et crédible. Je suis également fier d’avoir été un des chefs de file du mouvement citoyen qui a mené à la modification de la loi sur la Ville d’Ottawa et la reconnaissance officielle du caractère bilingue de notre capitale.

I bring a varied viewpoint practicing in a large firm, but in a regional market. My health law practice is mostly provincial but my competition law practice is federal. I practice in French and English. I have lived and worked in Toronto and Washington DC, but my home is in Ottawa. I am a past president of the AJEFO and well versed in access to justice issues. I hope to bring this blend of perspective and experience to Convocation.

Afin d’assurer un accès égal à la justice en français le Barreau doit appuyer ses membres francophones et francophiles et servir le public en français. Certes il y a eu progrès depuis les dix dernières années mais il reste du travail à faire.

As a part-time professor since 2005, I have seen first-hand the challenges facing law students. I believe we need to ensure a clear, accessible and fair pathway to licensure. The LSO should carefully monitor the effects of its latest iteration of the licensing model and remain open to adjustments to address the changing needs of the profession and of those seeking to join it.

To remain credible and relevant, the Law Society of Ontario needs to carry out its mandate innovatively, fairly, proportionally and in the public interest. I am committed to bringing those values to Convocation.

Background

François Baril is a partner in the Gowling WLG Ottawa office. His practice is focused on litigation, with an emphasis on health care, including professional liability, professional discipline and regulatory issues.

François also practises in the area of competition law. He advises both foreign and Canadian clients on all aspects of competition law, including merger clearance, distribution issues, pricing issues, investigations and enforcement actions.

François has appeared before a number of different courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada, the Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal, the Tax Court of Canada, all levels of the Ontario Court, the Yukon Supreme Court and Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories. He has also appeared before a number of federal and provincial administrative tribunals. His trial experience includes civil jury and non-jury cases, as well as criminal cases and arbitrations before the International Chamber of Commerce.

François has been with Gowling WLG since his time as an articling student in 1996, aside from a period in 2003-04 when he took leave to work for a large U.S. firm in Washington, D.C. During that time, he acted for Canadian softwood lumber producers and other international clients involved in trade litigation with the U.S. He returned to Gowling WLG in the fall of 2004.

François was an instructor at the Law Society of Upper Canada Bar Admission Course for several years. He is a part-time professor at the University of Ottawa, where he teaches competition law and lectures on trial advocacy. François is a past president of the AJEFO (Association des juristes d’expression française de l’Ontario). He is also a past president of the Vanier Community Services Centre.

Benchmark 2019 – Litigation Star
Chambers 2018 – Notable Practitioner, Health Law
Lexpert 2018 Leading Practitioner, Health Law
Member of the Supreme Court Advocacy Institute
Part-time professor of competition law at University of Ottawa since 2005
Member of the CCLA CPD Accreditation Committee since 2014
Frequent speaker at various CPD events

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

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Developing……

Something the LSO does that it should stop doing

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

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email

francois.baril@golwingwlg.com

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

Expand to read François' views
Equitable acces to justice is clearly within the mandate of the LSO and is one of the more difficult challenge. As president of the AJEFO I participated in a number of initiative to improve access to justice for francophones, including the Ottawa Court house pilot project and the opening of the Ontario Legal Information Center. I hope to bring this experience and insight to the LSO.
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views
This remains a significant challenge and acts as a barrier to entry to our profession.
Expand to read François' views
I support the SOP. It’s an important reminder of our professional duties to support diversity and inclusion. This was carefully deliberated by Convocation and I do not think it needs to be revisited. That said, LSO should do more to promote and explain the merits of the SOP and debunk some of the myths around it. It should unify rather than divide the profession.

Artificial Intelligence in Legal Service Delivery

Expand to read François' views
AI has arrived and is changing the way we practice. LSO needs to consider the implications for the profession and for the public; If elected I would seek to join the technology task force that is currently reviewing these issues.
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views
Our profession is facing societal and technological upheavals, i.e. New service models, AI, big data and block chain technologies. These developments present opportunities for lawyers, clients and the administration of justice but also carry risk. They require new skill, new standards, and adapted best practices. The LSO needs to proactively guide the profession through this evolving landscape and develop the appropriate regulatory framework and member support.

Reconciliation and Indigenous Communities

Expand to read François' views
I support the recommendations of the 2016 Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee report.
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views

Specific Enhancements to Licensing System

Expand to read François' views
As a part-time professor since 2005, I have seen first-hand the challenges facing law students. I believe we need to ensure a clear, accessible and fair pathway to licensure. The LSO should carefully monitor the effects of its latest iteration of the licensing model and remain open to adjustments to address the changing needs of the profession and of those seeking to join it.
Expand to read François' views
Yes, if LSO wants to shape and influence the profession it must do so not only though regulation but also through, relevant and accessible continuing education. It can work with partners to optimize programs
Expand to read François' views
There are number of ways in which LSO can and already does support licensees. A workable and fair parental leave program for independent practitioners would be an important step.
Expand to read François' views
Expand to read François' views

Diversity and Inclusivity Priorities

Expand to read François' views
I support the recommendations of the 2016 Equity and Aboriginal Issues Committee report.

Scope of practice for paralegals and non-licensees

Expand to read François' views
There is room to enhance the scope of practice of paralegals provided they are well trained. a thoughtful consideration of the role of paralegals is a necessary step in dealing with access to justice issues.

FOLA asks: Thoughts on Funding Staffed Local Law Libraries

Expand to read François' views
Digitalisation should enhance local libraries but not replace them. Staffed local libraries are an essential resource particularly for small practitioners. We need to find creative and collaborative ways to ensure they remain funded, viable and relevant.

Other topics

Candidate contributions on additional topics

Expand to read François' views
Access to justice in French has improved in Ontario but much work remains. There are still many operational and structural obstacles that stand in the way of the level of access that is otherwise guaranteed for francophones.

Other topics

Candidate contributions on additional topics

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Other topics

Candidate contributions on additional topics

Expand to read François' views

Endorsements of this candidate

Some candidates have chosen to provide lists of the people supporting their candidacy

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Lynne Watt/ Former president of the CCLA
Jill Alexander/ Former President of the CCLA
Domenic Crolla/ Former President of CCLA
Nadia Effendi/ Présidente de l’AJEFO
Sonia Ouellette/ Ancienne présidente de l’AJEFO
Paul Le Vay/ Ancien président de l’AJEFO
Sean McGee /ancien président de l’AJEFO
Daniel Boivin/ ancien président de l’AJEFO
Suzanne Clément / Bencher
Marc Sauvé
Dominic Lamb
Corey Willard
Johanne Leger
Paul LeVay
Tom Curry
Peter Kryworuk
Brad White
Christopher Kent
Dirk Bouwer
Nicholas McHaffie
René Guitard
Denyse Boulet
Isfahan Merali
Jayashree Goswani
Ross Earnshaw
Mark Seebaran
Yves LeBouthillier
François Larocque
Tara Sweeney