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October 4th, 2017

"Role of Expert Witness and Advocate in Assessment Valuation Disputes? - Is there a Conflict?"

 

Courts and law societies are clear on the general prohibition against a person being both a witness and an advocate in the litigation process. However, various Boards and Tribunals across the country provide considerable latitude and, in many situations, allow experts to act as both in the proceeding.

In Ontario, new Rules of Practice and Procedure of the Assessment Review Board allow a representative that is licensed with the Law Society as a paralegal to appear at a hearing as both advocate and witness. It remains to be seen to what extent this rule will be utilized and how many cases will involve a paralegal being both an advocate and an expert witness.

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November 8th, 2017

"Preparing Written Advocacy Briefs and Reports"

On April 1, 2017 the ARB's Amended Rules of Practice and Procedures came into effect. These rules fundamentally changed the Board's practice and procedures which have been in effect since the inception of the Rules in the 1990's. In person hearings are a thing of the past. Knowledge of historical rules will be of little assistance. 

 Emphasis is now on electronic hearings, via "tele" or video conferencing, written motions and hearing events - all require a fundamental change in current culture.  A working knowledge of written evidence preparation and  written arguments is the new "normal".

The presenters will review and outline current requirements and expectations. They will also provide guidelines for effective writing of the reports and briefs.

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