The set the minimum standards of conduct for lawyering in the province
“ The governing body enacts rules of professional conduct on behalf of those it represents. These rules must be taken as expressing the collective views of the profession as to the appropriate standards to which the profession should adhere.” [ MacDonald Estate v. Martin (1990), 77 D.L.R. (4 th ) 249 at 256 (S.C.C.) (Sopinka J.)]
Some rules are mandatory, discretionary while others exhort
Rule 2.01(2) “A lawyer shall perform any legal services on a client’s behalf to the standard of a competent lawyer.”
Rule 2.03(3) “… the lawyer may disclose … confidential information where it is necessary to do so in order to prevent death or harm …”
Rule 1.03(1)(c) “a lawyer has … a special responsibility to recognize the diversity of the Ontario community, to protect the dignity of individuals, and to respect human rights laws in force in Ontario.
Dean Elman in “Creating a Culture of Professional Responsibility and Ethics: A Leadership Role for Law Schools” (8 th Colloquium on Professionalism, 2007)
“ Indeed, this provision [Rules of PC apply to students “engaged in activities analogous to the practice of law such as mock trials and mooting”] has been interpreted very broadly over time to include almost any student activity to which the Code of Professional Conduct could be applied.”
In addition to integrity (e.g. cheating), our disciplinary code requires our students to ensure that they act civilly and in a non-discriminatory fashion to one another and in their contacts with third parties
For example, a private blog by a law student that posted discriminatory jokes or comments would be a violation of the Code
Law School Disciplinary Code is arguably even broader in its application than Rules because they do not make a distinction between public and private conduct
While attending a post-secondary institution, have allegations of misconduct ever been made against you, or, have you ever been suspended, expelled or penalized by a post-secondary institution for misconduct? If yes , attach written details of the allegation and suspension, expulsion and penalty imposed on you to this application.
24 students were disciplined for falsifying December grades to Bay Street (Toronto) firms
17 were suspended for one year plus a notation on their record
Cowan, “Atonement: When 24 Students at UofT’s Faculty of Law Lied About Their Grades to Land Summer Jobs, They Tarnished the School’s Reputation and Risked their Own Futures” (2002), 36 Toronto Life 57
Why did so many first year students feel the need to falsify their December grades to the Bay street firms?
One of the students who falsified his grades commented:
“ The day I walked into orientation, I didn’t even know what a Bay Street firm was … All of a sudden, orientation was full of T-shirts and paraphernalia from the firms. People were saying ‘You’ve got to get in with Torys or McCarthys!’ It was a whirlwind.”