CPD training

Criminal Law Scholars Series (CLSS): Bringing Scholarship into Practice

This monthly webinar series co-hosted by Courthouse Libraries BC and the Criminal Defence Advocacy Society, will feature criminal law scholars from across Canada.  Each session will showcase a different area of legal research and how it can be applied by criminal law practitioners. The first few webinars in this series will focus on recent Supreme Court of Canada pronouncements and their impact on criminal law practice.

CLSS #2 - Vetrovec Protections Post-Khela: Some Progress, but not Enough

In this webinar, Nikos Harris, Q.C. BC criminal lawyer and Professor at the Allard School of Law will discuss the protections available when dealing with highly incentivized witness testimony.

One of the most significant causes of wrongful conviction is the testimony of highly incentivized witnesses, such as those who have serious charges dropped as part of an agreement to become Crown witnesses.  However, the law has traditionally provided few protections to ward against the high risk of miscarriages of justices posed by these Vetrovec witnesses.  The Supreme Court of Canada in its 2003 decision in R. v. Khela provided some progress in this area, but the protections are still inadequate when compared to many other areas of evidence associated with wrongful conviction.   This talk will focus on legal strategies counsel can use to decrease the chances of a miscarriage of justice caused by a Vetrovec witness, and suggest reforms for this growing area of evidence in our criminal justice system.

Presenter: Nikos Harris, Q.C.

Moderator: Tamara Levy, Q.C.


May 19, 2022


4:30 – 6pm (PDT)



Ethics in Criminal Law: Duty to Clients

Join Courthouse Libraries BC and the Criminal Defence Advocacy Society for a webinar on counsel’s duty to the client. This panel discussion will be focused on the role of criminal defence counsel in relation to their clients, navigating complex solicitor client relationships, and ethical considerations. The primary audience for this course will be junior defence counsel, but it will be a good refresher for senior counsel too.

We invite attendees to submit any questions or ethical issues for the panel to discuss in advance. Upon registering attendees will receive a link to submit discussion questions.

Participants in this webinar may claim up to 1.5hrs of CPD with LSBC, including 1.5hrs of Ethics credit.

Panelists: Phil Riddell, Q.C. and Jaia Rai
Moderator: Michael Klein, Q.C.


June 1, 2022


5pm - 6:30pm (PDT)



CLSS #3 - Mr. Big and the New Common Law Confessions Rule: Five Years in Review

In this webinar, Adelina Iftene, Professor at the Schulich School of Law, will review recent cases that have applied the Hart framework.

In R v Hart, 2014 SCC 52, the Court set out a two-prong framework for assessing the admissibility of confessions obtained through the undercover police tactic known as “Mr. Big”. The goal of the framework was to address reliability concerns, to protect suspects from state abuse, and to reduce the risk of wrongful convictions. The first prong of the test created a new common law evidentiary rule, under which Mr. Big obtained confessions are now presumptively inadmissible. The second prong revamped the existing abuse of process doctrine.

Prof. Iftene has reviewed subsequent cases and analyzed them both qualitatively and quantitatively with a view to assessing whether the goals of the Hart framework have been met, what effect the framework has had on the admissibility of Mr. Big obtained confessions, and what, if any, shortcomings the framework has. The presentation will highlight the negligible impact the framework has had on the number of Mr. Big confessions that are admitted and will engage with some of the potential reasons as to why that has been the case.

Participants in this webinar may claim up to 1.5hrs of CPD with the Law Society of BC.

Presenter: Adelina Iftene, Professor of Law at the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University

Moderator: Nikos Harris, Q.C.


June 23, 2022


4:30 – 6pm (PDT)



Preparing Clients for Mediation in Workplace Sexual Harassment Claims

Learn tips and strategies for preparing your client for mediation in a workplace sexual harassment claim from the perspective of legal counsel and a mediator. This 1.5hr presentation will focus on how lawyers can best assist a self-represented client to prepare for and navigate a mediation process. Lawyers representing a client at mediation may also benefit from this session.


Rose Keith, Q.C., mediator and Associate Counsel at Harper Grey, and
Fred Wynne, employment and human rights lawyer and mediator, Tevlin Gleadle Curtis

This 1.5-hr webinar is presented in partnership with the SHARP Workplaces program through CLAS (Sexual Harassment Advice, Response, and Prevention for Workplaces). The presentation will be aimed primarily at SHARP roster lawyers. However, other lawyers, law students and advocates are welcome to attend. Participants in this webinar may claim up to 1.5 hours of CPD credit with LSBC, including 1 hour of Practice


June 7, 2022


12:30 - 2pm (PDT)



More CPD opportunities

Archived webinars

Archived webinars are organized by topic. If you plan to review a previously recorded course for CPD credit, it is your responsibility to ensure that your review of the course meets the Law Society of BC's criteria for Approved Education Activities.

Legal research course

This course, which is eligible for CPD credit, is a series of videos that demonstrate how to plan a research strategy and employ specific research skills.  In the videos we show you how to use popular legal research tools that are free (CanLII) or that you can use for free at the BC Courthouse Libraries. 

Take the course (including self-assessment quiz questions) on the Law Society Online Learning Centre.

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