Legal Fees Explained By Hans John Kalina Let’s talk about legal fees. The topic of legal fees is very often misunderstood by our clients.  First and foremost, clients need to acknowledge that the lawyer is a business person.  Legal services are the product and the lawyer’s livelihood is entirely dependent on the client’s payment for…

Anatomy of a Criminal Proceeding by Hans John Kalina What exactly does a lawyer do to assist their client in a criminal proceeding?  It’s a question that is often asked and poorly understood.  American television programs promote the myth of a lawyer walking into a prosecutor’s office, throwing down a file and yelling to advance…

The Role of Defence Counsel in a Criminal Proceeding  By Hans John Kalina What is the role of defence counsel in a criminal proceeding?  While this may seem like a question with an obvious answer, closer examination, reveals that it is not. There are two opposing views on the subject.  One view is that defence…

Crossing Borders – Proceed with Caution Issues at the border with our southern neighbour are very much in the news. It is not surprising that some people see traveling to or from the USA as frought with trepidation and concern. What can you expect at the port of entry, whether by land, air or sea?…

When is a Search Warrant Valid? In R. v. Gabaret, 2017 ONCA 139 , released yesterday, the Court of Appeal for Ontario reiterated the preconditions for a valid search warrant. By way of background, in order for the police to obtain a search warrant, the officer must swear an affidavit titled as an “information to…

Today the Ontario Court of Appeal released its decision in R. v. McKenzie, 2017 ONCA 128, ruling that immigration consequences do not warrant a significant departure from the appropriate range of sentences.

In a criminal trial, normally only a duly qualified “expert” is permitted to provide opinion evidence to the court. However, lay people, or non-experts are able to provide an opinion on matters that are part of everyday behavioural observation and don’t require special expertise.

Observations are limited to what the witness saw, heard, smelled, tasted or touched. An “expert”, however, may provide an opinion as to what a set of observations may mean. They are allowed to interpret the observations and provide the court with an analysis and professional opinion.

How you testify is equally as important as what you say. Being a jerk can mean losing your case merely due to inappropriate behaviour.

The decision to testify or not at trial can be a daunting but crucial decision to the outcome of your trial.

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