Bar Dispute Resolution Group Forum (Counsel Forum)

Minutes of Meeting held on October 3, 2014

Members Present:                                                                         

Philippa Samworth (Chair)
Michael Maiola
Michelle Friedman
Joan Takahashi
Tricia Hannigan
Jeff Shinehoft
Susannah Margison
Joseph Rizzotto
Eric Grossman
Alex Voudouris
Audrey Ramsay via teleconference
Stanley Pasternak via teleconference

FSCO Attendees                                                               

Asfaw Seife
Shayna Wiesenfeld
John Lobo
Janine Macey
Christina Pearce
  1. Meeting on May 30, 2014.
    Approved as amended.
  2. E-Calendar for Arbitration Demonstration:
    FSCO's Arbitration eCalendar was fully launched on July 2, 2014.

    J. Macey thanked members at the meeting for their assistance, input and feedback during the eCalendar phased in approach.

    J. Macey advised members that the MARS eCalendar Team has been selected to receive a 2014 Stella Award in two categories: Greening and Partnership for the Arbitration eCalendar/DRCD-2 Project Team.
  3. Request for Resumptions of Pre-hearings:
    J. Macey informed members that due to the increase in resumption requests, arbitrator availability is being seriously impacted. FSCO is pushing back on resumption of prehearings pertaining to production issues. Motion days eliminated due to operational concerns. Too many arbitrators involved in handling the file making it hard to assign a hearing arbitrator.
  4. DRS Status Report – Statistics and Staffing Updates
    Asfaw Seife, Janine Macey and John Lobo provided statistical updates for Mediation, Arbitration and Appeals with reference to the reports distributed to members.
Judicial Review:
Updates since May 30, 2014 were provided in a memo from Asfaw Seife to Forum members and reviewed.
Mediation Unit:
J. Lobo provided a staffing update that the team leader and mediator positions will be filled shortly through the competition process.
Arbitration Unit:
J. Macey provided a staffing update that three new arbitrators have been selected and will be starting shortly.

Other items:

  • Bill 15 (formerly Bill 171) a discussion followed on the status, process, and timing. Second reading will likely occur once House resumes in October. There was a suggestion that FSCO might want to maintain a blog to provide status updates.
  • Discussion followed on ADR Chamber processes pertaining to arbitration files.
  • Philippa Samworth suggested that a Forum be established with ADR Chambers.
  • A "discussion corner" without FSCO Staff proceeded with the members.
Next Meeting – November 28, 2014.