The Most Popular Law Searches 2020-2021?

Here’s a fund overview. Over the past year the search terms containing the broad term ‘law’ in the United States have revealed a few interesting shifts.

– Given the pandemic year, COVID-19 made a lot of anti-maskers and anti-vaccine conspiracy theorist search the web for legal options. “Anti-mask” law was a exponentially higher search term (that really didn’t exist prior to 2020).

– The term ‘martial law’ saw a one day dramatic increase on, you guessed it, January 6th, 2021, or Insurrection Day.

– Lastly, with the legalization of cannabis across states, many are searching for updates regarding both State level and federal legalization.

-Source all from Google Trends

What are Treaties? (Canada)

States can make treaties and international organizations can make treaties. For example, there is a treaty between the UN and Cambodia to establish the special criminal tribunal.

What are treaties? Treaties are instruments that establish international rights and obligations. Treaties go by many names: conventions; memorandums, etc. at the root at ii if it’s a binding instrument subject to international law then it’s a treaty.

Where does the legal weight of treaties come from? Pacta servanta – there ought to be an obligation amongst states to adhere to their treaty obligations.

Critique of Customary International Law

The main critiques of Customary International Law are that the two requirements of state practice and opinion juris are too simplistic. There is not enough guidance from scholarship vis what is meant by these two requirements. Customary IL is in the ‘eye of the beholder’. There is no reason for the rule of custom or lack thereof. The science of customary law is lacking. Guidance from ICJ is vague. Opinion juris is also vague.

Continue reading “Critique of Customary International Law”

Limiting Your Treatments after Injury

Is it true that you are entitled to certain insurance benefits from your own insurer, regardless of who was at fault? It’s true, in Canada these benefits are often called ‘Section B benefits’. However, insurers like to erroneously inform injured clients that they will only ‘authorize’ 21 treatments (of various kinds). This is not true. Continue reading “Limiting Your Treatments after Injury”

COMMON LAW – CONTRACT OF EMPLOYMENT

Here is a broad overview of various topics in labour and employment law. This would come out predominantly from a Canadian context.

If you work for somebody, then by definition you have an employment contract, i.e. the common law contract of employment. Generally, there is an explicit contract written out between employer and employee, other times the contract is just implied to exist at common law. The common law contract of employment is basic which is why employees prefer to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement. That being said, the courts have attempted to build a “floor of rights” into the common law contract of employment. A barrier they have encountered is that there is no room for the common law and statute to develop in tandem, i.e. if a right is covered as per statute then that right cannot exist at common law.

The common law contract of employment is poor because at common law there aren’t many developments that create substantive or procedural rights for employees, there is a huge imbalance of power between employers and employees which undermine the freedom to contract; civil litigation is a costly and time-consuming process.

Relationship between Custom and Treaty Law

The basis of the Nicaragua case: what happens when there is the same rule of law in customary law and treaty law.

1. COEXISTENCE The main conclusion from this case is that the two sources of law can continue to co-exist. Just because a norm also exists in treaty law, does not mean that the source from customary law is not extinguished. For example the law of use of force flows both from treaty law and customary IL.

2. TREATY –> CUSTOM Treaty activity can constitute state practice for the formation of a customary norm. One has to be very clear in analyzing state conduct whether states are only acting under their treaty obligations or whether adherence to treaty obligations has grown to include opinion juris and broader state practice. A good example of this is UNCLOS (UN convention on law of high seas). A lot of UNCLOS provisions have become customary IL. States that are not part of UNCLOS are bound by some of the provisions of the Convention. For a treaty to create custom you need non treaty parties acting as if they are bound by the treaty.

3. CUSTOM –> TREATY custom can be restated in a treaty format. When a treaty codifies customary IL, the treaty is restating customary IL.

4. CONTRACT –OUT A treaty can be used to contract out of customary IL. There are however certain obligations that no state can contract out of i.e. jus cogens norms.

What are the statute of limitations on injury claims?

You slipped on city property and will be bringing a claim against the city.

You’ve been hit from behind by an automobile and you feel fine for a couple of weeks but then you’re starting to get pain in your neck.

No matter your story, if you’re injured and plan on filing a claim you should be aware of your limitations. Continue reading “What are the statute of limitations on injury claims?”

Obvious Check Before Buying a Condo

Condo living can be good for the environment, requires less maintenance, and can increase security/community. Smaller spaces and sharing heat reduces your carbon footprint (assuming you pay attention to that kind of thing). You don’t have to vacuum common area carpets, shovel snow, or cut grass. The garbage is taken away down your chute, and your condo fees cover most of your utilities. You also have the benefit of living in close proximity to others for added security. Continue reading “Obvious Check Before Buying a Condo”

Condos or Townhome vs Single Family House

For the most, a house will be the single greatest purchase of their lifetime. This is particularly true in large cities where real-estate prices are much higher than rural areas. There is a significant amount of research, a well defined process, and necessary expertise to close real-estate transactions. But are there differences between single family home and townhouse / condo transactions?

Yes there is, and it’s more than just preference, but let’s start there.

Continue reading “Condos or Townhome vs Single Family House”