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Old 05-24-2017, 12:34 PM
OrleansLawyer OrleansLawyer is offline
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for any change to be effective a significant change to the Rules (CLRA, FLR, et all...) need to happen. The rules as they stand are not "civil" in nature. By that I mean, the vast majority of "civil"ians cannot understand them.
The crux of the issue is this:
If the rules are too simple, there is a loss of procedural fairness. The rules are intended to ensure every case is dealt with fairly.
If the rules are too complex, parties waste cost to jump through hoops and are unable to navigate them as self-represented litigants.

The process has been working to simplify over the last few decades. For example, civil matters have the simple procedures and expanded small claims court, and family matters have the FLR and a much shorter discovery process.

Rather than objecting to something it may be better to investigate how to use the opportunity that Paralegals present to family law.
Paralegals have become the main provider of services for small-dollar cases because they are more cost effective. This is a niche, similar to accountants preparing tax returns (a service that used to be the territory of lawyers).

Family law is distinguished from these by two facts:
1 - There is no maximum value (either to your children, or to a potential equalization or spousal support case)
2 - The system is adversarial, and zero-sum, which encourages higher expenditures by a wrathful or vexatious party (and necessitates a response by the other party)

A risk of throwing paralegals and lawyers into the same ring is that it will create a two-tier system. It was to encourage parity that QC is not awarded in most Canadian provinces, and historical gradations between lawyers have declined (for example, all Canadian lawyers are barristers and solicitors, not one to the exclusion of the other).

An option (and one that some firms utilize), is to use a paralegal-lawyer divide similar to the old solicitor-barrister divide. The paralegal meets with the client and drafts documents under the supervision of the lawyer, and the lawyer handles court appearances. Such a divide should reduce costs without reducing quality of work.
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