March 11, 2021
Reminder: Amended Divorce Act and Alberta Rules of Court 
The Law Society of Alberta wants to remind Alberta lawyers that the amendments to the Divorce Act and the Alberta Rules of Court came into force on March 1, 2021.

The Department of Justice Canada’s website has a variety of resources available for professionals about the amendments to the Divorce Act, including:

The Order in Council 27/2021 amending the Alberta Rules of Court can be viewed online.

Pursuant to these amendments, there are new Family Law Forms, which have been required since February 26, 2021. Lawyers should ensure they are using the new Family Law Forms found on the Court of Queen’s Bench website, to avoid rejection of their documents.
Land Titles Office Pending Registration Queue
Effective April 1, 2021, the Alberta Land Titles Office will operate a pending registration queue (PRQ). This means that priority is guaranteed on submission, allowing parties to complete transactions or release funds without waiting for registration. Reliance on the PRQ is, of course, voluntary.

Documents that do not require a legal land ID, survey documents and large registration requests will not be able to rely on the PRQ for closings.

You may review the amendments to the Land Titles Act, along with accompanying changes to the regulations by reviewing Bill 48 (pages 21-29) and Order in Council 56/2021.

Read more about registrations requests, rejections, time sensitive documents, and other information here.
Bencher Profile Series
Bud Melnyk, QC
Corie Flett, QC
When Bud Melnyk, QC, got the call that he was re-elected as a Bencher for the Law Society, he was thrilled to once again have the opportunity to represent the Central Alberta district at the table.

“I’ve always gotten a lot of personal satisfaction from being involved with the community as a Board member. On a professional level, it’s also very enlightening as a lawyer to be involved with the Law Society, not only to gain a better understanding of the mechanics of the organization, but also to gain a broader understanding of the profession as a whole,” he says.

Bud initially joined the Board in February 2018 and now takes his seat for a second three-year term.
Born and raised in Edmonton with six other siblings, Bud obtained both his Bachelor of Commerce and his Juris Doctor from the University of Alberta. Shortly after being called to the Alberta bar in 1991, he began practising law in Red Deer and has now been an active member of the legal community for 30 years. He comes to the Bencher table as a partner at Warren Sinclair LLP.

Bud has always had a unique passion for education throughout his career, and has acted as an educator in a variety of capacities within the legal community in Red Deer. Read Bud's full profile.
For many younger lawyers, managing the commitments of a full practice with a balanced and fulfilling life outside the office can be an overwhelming challenge. Corie Flett, QC is no stranger to those kinds of challenges, and she brings that necessary perspective to the Bencher table.

“I was the newest lawyer elected in 2017, and I wanted to bring a different perspective to the Bencher table,” says Corie. “The efficiencies that technology like social media has brought increases the pressure on newer lawyers to maintain a work-life balance, but at the same time appear totally accessible 100 per cent of the time.”

Corie was called to the bar in 2011 in Fort McMurray, where she started her own practice (Muessle Flett Law LLP, or MF Law) in May of 2019. Throughout 2020, Corie has had the pandemic to contend with atop the pressures associated with owning your own business.

“We’re in the middle of an access to justice crisis, where clients expect us to do more or the same for less in the midst of new and alternative ways of providing those services. Couple that with the changes that technology is bringing to the legal profession and maintaining a more traditional, conventional practice is more difficult than ever for new lawyers.”  Read Corie's full profile.
Keep an eye out for other Bencher profiles featured in future eBulletins.
Justice Canada — Feedback wanted for HELP Toolkit: Identifying and Responding to Family Violence for Family Law Legal Advisors
Justice Canada is now seeking feedback on the draft HELP Toolkit from the law societies and its members.According to Justice Canada, the toolkit is currently being tested by more than 60 family law legal advisers across Canada and is undergoing a final review by selected stakeholders in the field of family violence and family law. The toolkit is expected to be published in the second half of 2021.
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