It’s Been Awhile…

2017 has been a busy and political year here at TLABC!

We have been active in our campaign to End Distracted Driving, (please visit – and have been focusing on political engagement and some very important justice-related campaigns, which we will be able to update you on soon.

As we move into the fall season, we have some exciting new initiatives to share, a jam-packed seminar season, and will be re-launching this site across all of our social media channels!

(We also have some new additions to the team!)

Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest & Twitter (@tla_bc) for campaign updates, association issues, member perspective and our new wellness focus, “Wellness in the Workplace!”  #TLABCwellness 

Stay tuned and enjoy the last few weeks of summer!


Politics & Passion

[Excerpt from the Fall Issue of the TLABC Verdict] – out now! 

There’s a feeling in the air when summer fades and fall begins… that back-to-school ‘something’ that is crisp and busy and smells like falling leaves and hot apple pie.  Warm afternoons turn into cool, dark evenings and calendars fill up again with meetings, fundraising and campaign strategy.

In short, Fall hits – and it’s go-time.

Not that summer was all that quiet around here- we had multiple retreats and conferences going on for the TLABC Staff, the Board & Executive, and some of our campaign committees, (albeit with a few vacation days tacked on.)  We had staff in Los Angeles and Seattle, Washington, Squamish, the Yukon and Osoyoos, and we’ve been examining our goals and planning for the year ahead, but the work has been strategic and internal and now it’s time for action.

I was fortunate to attend a conference in LA this past July and was asked to present to the National Association of Trial Lawyer Executives (NATLE) on behalf of TLABC.  The meetings were in conjunction with the American Association of Justice (AAJ) and were also book-ended by the GOP and Democratic National Conventions.  It was definitely a busy week in California, and there was an undeniable buzz that distinctly reminded me of my very first AAJ/NATLE trip – pre-US election, 4 years ago.  It was the same conference, but in Chicago – just before Obama’s second term. Now, let’s not get it twisted – this particular buzz was not exactly the same.  4 years ago, it felt exciting and hopeful and I was fascinated by the entire business… whereas this time, it simply seemed to stem from fear.

Fear is a powerful thing.  It’s palpable.  You could feel it in the media, as stories broke about even more racism, more crimes of hate and gender, and in the ongoing antics of that man-who-shall-not-be-named.  You could feel it in the public perception as they carefully went about their days, avoiding the conversation as often as possible, completely unsure of what is to come.  Everyone seemed to be reacting to a series of sometimes silent, but very tangible threats to their society, often with humour, but always in fear.

Well, if there’s one thing that I’ve learned from my time at TLABC, is that fear does not fuel change – only passion does.

At TLABC, through our PAC fund, we are constantly working against threats to our justice system, and our members remain diligent in monitoring what may be coming down the pipe.  We want to make change – to protect our citizens – to strive towards better access to justice.  These are no small things.  But success lies in our passion and subsequently, our action.

I’ve heard time after time, that TLABC was founded by a “small group of renegades” – lawyers who truly believed in justice and in the access of it.  These lawyers did not act out of fear, but of concern for their clients and a passion for their practice.  As time goes on and more battles arise to be fought, it is imperative that we remember to do the same.

There are other groups and organizations who are better suited to predictable action and reaction – TLABC is not one of them.  The work continues, not out of fear of the unknown, or of systematic dissolution, but because it is the right thing to do.

As an association, we will rise to the challenges ahead and show time and again our commitment to justice.

Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek. – Barack Obama

If you want to show your own “Passion And Commitment”then consider making a donation the TLABC PAC fund so that we can take action when the threats to our justice system arise.  Let’s not just sit back, in fear…

Let’s give them something to talk about.

Make a commitment to justice.

[PLEASE NOTE: This was originally published pre- US election]

To donate to the TLABC PAC Fun, please contact


Governments Change, TLABC’s Membership Endures

(From the March PowerPAC by Bentley Doyle, Director of Communications and PR)

In a world darkened by ethnic conflicts that tear nations apart, Canada stands as a model of how people of different cultures can live and work together in peace, prosperity, and mutual respect.”  – former US President Bill Clinton 


Hand in glove with aspiring for good things, we sought a quote of inspiration. It was a move to counter the lack of encouragement by the latest budget delivered, in February, by the BC Government. There was nary a word nor dollar about legal aid, and nothing to indicate our elected officials will finally address the massive legislative deficiencies neglecting the needs of families who have suffered the wrongful death of a loved one.

Instead, we are left with added concern, namely in the form of the BC Government’s proposed congestion tax. If it is materializes (after the vote),  will it be rolled into the already unfair provincial tax on legal fees? TLABC has written to BC’s Premier and the Finance Minister in an attempt to get clarification on the matter. At the same time, TLABC has reiterated its long-held assertion that the tax on legal services (which is more than 20 years old) never should have been conceived and delivered in the first place. The tax should never have been forced on citizens. This NDP-created tax of the early 1990s should have been extinguished by the currently governing Liberals – yet both parties have acted the same way, by taking the tax money into general revenue rather than earmarking it for legal aid, which was the original idea back in the day, despite what either party claims these days.

The tax, by the way, currently cascades more than $145 million each year into the BC Government’s revenue stream. Oh, and the BC Government projected there will be a budget surplus this year of $879 million, made real by the end of March. There is also another $400 million in the contingency fund, and the BC Liberals anticipate having a billion dollars each of the next three years in surpluses, contingencies and for forecast errors and allowances. And all of that is in addition to the non-partisan governing tradition of claiming (make that re-directing) hundreds of millions each year from ICBC’s profits, despite the fact the so-called people’s insurer was never intended to be a money-maker.

At the very least, tax money collected after legal services have been performed should fund legal aid, and profits raked in by our public auto insurer should be used to offset the high cost of premiums paid by the motoring public.

It’s a good thing TLABC and its members take direct action to address wrongs rather than wait for governments to wise up. Case(s) in point, TLABC was directly involved in the case that challenged BC’s system of costly courtroom hearing fees, which resulted in the Supreme Court of Canada ruling, last fall, that BC’s excessive fees are unconstitutional. TLABC since bumped up the challenge in late 2014 by suing the BC Government (Attorney General) and the Director of Sheriff Services over the province’s excessive civil jury fees.