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March 3, 2011 permalink
While Harry Kopyto continues his high-profile defense in an effort to protect paralegals from control by lawyers, the lawyers union has caused North Bay city councilor Maureen Boldt to lose her seat and suspended her paralegal license, finding her to be 'not of good character'. Just remember, this all means less help for families attacked by the social services behemoth. Don't complain to your elected representatives. The union will get them fired if they try to help.
Tribunal finds former city councillor 'not of good character,' denied paralegal licence
A former North Bay councillor who lost her seat over illegal conduct as a paralegal learned this week the governing body that oversees her profession is denying her a licence to practise.
"The candidate, persistently and repetitively, conducted herself in such a manner that she posed a risk to the public and the administration of justice," a Law Society of Upper Canada tribunal says in a decision Tuesday dismissing Maureen Boldt's application for her paralegal licence.
The law society, which oversees lawyers in Ontario, began regulating paralegals in the province in 2007 and started issuing licences in 2008.
Boldt started working as a paralegal in 1992 and was allowed to continue practising pending the results of a tribunal hearing to decide if she is of "good character" and can be approved for a licence.
She has a record for illegally practising law and was found in contempt of a court injunction banning her from continuing to do work that only licensed lawyers in Ontario are allowed to do.
Boldt lost her municipal seat during her fourth term because she missed too many consecutive meetings while serving four months under house arrest for the unauthorized practise of law.
Boldt said she plans to appeal the tribunal's decision and hopes to be allowed to continue practising pending the outcome of that appeal.
Nugget.ca will post comments from Boldt and highlights of the tribunal's decision later this afternoon.
Source: North Bay Nugget
Addendum: The final decision.
Law society appeal panel denies licence to paralegal – DECISION POSTED
The organization that oversees paralegals in Ontario will not grant a former city councillor her licence.
It’s using her language to explain why.
The Law Society of Upper Canada appeal panel released its 18-page decision Tuesday afternoon giving reasons for not allowing Maureen Boldt to appeal a disciplinary hearing’s decision a year ago denying her a paralegal licence.
Among the reasons, the appeal panel addressed Boldt’s public accusations the law society — which also governs Ontario lawyers — has a “vendetta” against her.
“The appellant’s conduct after the contempt finding does not simply demonstrate an absence of remorse but also a willingness to engage in a lengthy vendetta against those who she viewed as responsible for her conviction including a vulnerable former client, a superior court judge and the law society,” writes Adriana Doyle on behalf of the law society’s appeal panel.
That contempt finding placed Boldt under house arrest for four months in 2007 for violating a court injunction placed on her years earlier which banned her from the unauthorized practise of law. In other words, she wasn’t a licensed lawyer and could not prepare separation agreements, divorce petitions, wills and incorporations.
The house arrest cost her a seat on city council for missing too many consecutive meetings early in her fourth term.
It also triggered a string of failed attempts to appeal that finding, as well as discontinued lawsuits against, among others, the law society, the judge who found her in contempt of the injunction and the client at the centre of it all who a court determined had paid for a separation agreement that only a licensed lawyer, not a paralegal, is allowed to prepare.
The Nugget contacted the law society last week to ask about the year-long wait for the appeal panel to release its decision whether to grant Boldt a paralegal licence. A copy of the decision was provided in answer to that question on Tuesday.
Boldt said she had not yet read the appeal panel’s decision when contacted Tuesday.
“I don’t even have a copy of it, but it’s gone off to the media,” Boldt said.
“It’s not over yet. I have another route.”
There is no other appeal available with the law society, but a paralegal seeking a licence can apply to Ontario’s divisional court for a judicial review of the appeal panel’s decision, according to the law society.
Boldt Paralegal and Mediation opened in North Bay in 1992. Boldt’s disputes with the law society started a few years later, and she has repeatedly been found to have done work that only licensed lawyers in Ontario are allowed to do.
Boldt denies any wrongdoing, but her actions have brought the legal system into disrepute by repeatedly speaking in abusive terms about the law society and a superior court judge, and victimizing a former client, the decision says.
“We accept that the appellant’s reactions show a great deal of frustration with the legal system. We also accept that regulators such as the law society must tolerate a degree of discordant criticism,” the decision says.
“That said, viewed as a whole, the appellant’s behaviour was fundamentally inconsistent with the conduct of a legal practitioner who respects the rule of law and will adhere to the standards of conduct set by her regulator.”
Source: North Bay Nugget