Litigation for Solicitors 2012

Course Date: November 29, 2012

Total: 5h 33min

Welcome and Introduction

Simon R. Coval — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, Vancouver
Andrew F. Wilkinson, QC — McCarthy 
Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Introduction—First Steps: What To Do and What Not To Do Before You Call a Litigator

  • demand letters, cease and desist letters, and proposals to resolve; what should be “on the record" and what “off the record”
  • what to do when the other party breaches: preserving your rights and electing your remedies
  • strategy for communications with the future adverse party

Moderator: Andrew F. Wilkinson, QC — McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver
Simon R. Coval — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP,  Vancouver
Gordon R.  Johnson — Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Vancouver
Miranda L. Lam — McCarthy 
Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Litigation Seen from a Solictor’s Perspective

A. Managing Litigation Costs

  • selection of litigation counsel: some litigators are known for their attack oriented style, others take a more balanced approach—what is the best match for this client?
  • ADR options and considerations—managing an emerging dispute
  • shortcuts in the litigation process: the new Rules provide some options for speedy disposition but a failed shortcut can add cost—learn when to consider alternatives to trial
  • efficiencies: how to get the litigators up to speed effectively and how to reduce wasted effort in the discovery process
  • communications: how to position the client/lawyer team for success in working together effectively

Gordon R. Johnson — Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Vancouver

Networking Break

B. Deal Or No Deal? Litigating Your Contract Negotiations

  • negotiating the deal: what legal obligations apply?
  • do we have a binding deal? LOI's, MOU's
  • open deals and uncertainty
  • subject deals

Simon R. Coval — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP,  Vancouver 

C. Privilege and How to Keep It

  • basic principles refreshed
  • the limits of privilege: exceptions and waiver
  • lessons learned

Jennifer L. Francis — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, Vancouver

D. Choice of Law and Choice of Venue

  • deciding on the preferable venue for a dispute
  • drafting clauses to get the venue you prefer
  • choice of law—a potentially costly headache
  • procedural vs. substantive law
  • making the law of conflicts work for you

Andrew F. Wilkinson QC — McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Lunch (on your own)

Managing an Emerging Dispute

A. The Dispute Resolution Spectrum: Practical Approaches to Resolving Commercial Disputes

  • arbitration clauses are routinely used without much analysis of whether that is the right approach for the particular parties, the transaction and the possible disputes that could arise
  • alternative dispute resolution
    • default curing periods
    • good faith negotiation
    • senior business leader contact
    • mandatory mediation
    • ADR limited to certain types of dispute
  • arbitration vs. litigation—is there a real difference in what these procedures deliver?
  • what to consider in designing an arbitration process
    • choice of law
    • seat of the arbitration
    • arbitration institution
    • applicable rules
    • number of arbitrators
    • appointment process
    • time limits
    • other special procedural rules

Miranda L. Lam — McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver
Jonathan S. McLean — Stikeman Elliott LLP, Vancouver

B. Insurance

  • read your policy before you have a claim or loss, and read it again when you may have a claim
  • report, report, report to insurers, and never take no for an answer
  • respond to insurer's positions in a substantive way after getting advice

Ariel DeJong — McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Networking Break


  • what is an “error”?
  • your duty to your client
  • conflicts arising from litigation and from possible errors

Herman H. Van Ommen — McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Vancouver

Litigation: The View from In-House Counsel

Moderator: Andrew F. Wilkinson QC — McCarthy Tétrault, Vancouver
Anna K. Fung, QC — TimberWest Forest Corp., Vancouver
Constance E. Ladell — BC Lottery Corporation, Vancouver
Heather Northrup — Vancity Group, Vancouver 

Concluding Remarks

Simon R. Coval — Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, Vancouver
Andrew F. Wilkinson, QC — McCarthy 
Tétrault LLP, Vancouver