Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

Software practices law without a license

by Paul Jay, CBC News Online

While here in Canada we're still learning to use tax software to file online, over in the United States even more advanced online software applications are practising law.

Which, in the case of the Ziinet Bankruptcy Engine, may not be a good thing. A judgement against Ziinet's owner was upheld after a court ruled the software made too many decisions to be considered a clerical tool.

The Wired blog 27B Stroke 6 has a copy of the judgment, which said, in part:

The software did, indeed, go far beyond providing clerical services. It determined where (particularly, in which schedule) to place information provided by the debtor, selected exemptions for the debtor and supplied relevant legal citations. Providing such personalized guidance has been held to constitute the practice of law. ... (The) system touted its offering of legal advice and projected an aura of expertise concerning bankruptcy petitions; and, in that context, it offered personalized -- albeit automated -- counsel. ... We find that because this was the conduct of a non-attorney, it constituted the unauthorized practice of law.

It seems you can indeed get anything on the Internet these days, though as wired pointed out, the defendant retained a human lawyer for his defence.

Thanks to BoingBoing and Futurismic for the link.

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.

Comments

Hudson

Montreal

This is totally stupid. No wonder lawyers have such a poor reputation, if they feel threatened by a web site that helps you fill in the blanks.

Posted January 15, 2008 08:44 PM

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

Post a Comment

Disclaimer:

Note: By submitting your comments you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that due to the volume of e-mails we receive, not all comments will be published, and those that are published will not be edited. But all will be carefully read, considered and appreciated.

Note: Due to volume there will be a delay before your comment is processed. Your comment will go through even if you leave this page immediately afterwards.

Privacy Policy | Submissions Policy

Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

World »

SPECIAL REPORT CBC goes to the front lines in the battle for Aleppo
Aleppo is 'the jewel of Syria.' It's also where the government is hoping to win the Syrian civil war, writes Margaret Evans.
Indonesia earthquake leaves at least 97 dead video
A strong undersea earthquake rocks Indonesia's Aceh province, killing at least 97 people and causing dozens of buildings to collapse.
Standing Rock leader tells protest camp it's time to go home video
An Indigenous leader in North Dakota has told people who have been staying in a massive camp, set up months ago to oppose a contentious pipeline, that it's time to pack up and go home.
more »

Canada »

Canada's record on First Nations child welfare to face scrutiny in Washington video
The Assembly of First Nations regional chief in Manitoba is warning the state of First Nations child welfare system is in such a sorry state that is akin to subjecting kids to genocide.
Search-plane decision ends 12-year procurement odyssey
A 12-year military procurement odyssey, meant to replace the air force's nearly 50-year-old Buffalo search planes, will finally come to an end on Thursday. The Liberal government has chosen the Airbus C-295 transport as the country's next fixed-wing search-and-rescue plane, according to defence and industry sources
North Vancouver homeowners fight 361% increase in property assessment — and lose
As property assessments are on the rise in B.C., a recent appeal from North Vancouver shows how municipal plans to densify left one owner with an $18,000 property tax bill.
more »

Politics »

Search-plane decision ends 12-year procurement odyssey
A 12-year military procurement odyssey, meant to replace the air force's nearly 50-year-old Buffalo search planes, will finally come to an end on Thursday. The Liberal government has chosen the Airbus C-295 transport as the country's next fixed-wing search-and-rescue plane, according to defence and industry sources
New Finance document suggests doctor partnerships designed to avoid tax
The Canadian Medical Association is making a last stand in the Senate against a tax-tightening measure they say unfairly hurts some doctors' partnerships. A Finance Canada briefing note suggests those partnerships may have been deliberately structured to avoid tax, and the measure simply makes the tax system fairer.
RCMP decides not to outfit officers with body-worn cameras
The RCMP has decided not to issue body-worn cameras to general duty members. In a force-wide memo to staff that was obtained by CBC News, Deputy Commissioner Kevin Brosseau said the current technology isn't durable enough and its batteries don't last long enough.
more »

Health »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Arts & Entertainment»

YouTube showcases 2016's most popular online videos
Ahead of this year's YouTube Rewind, the company also released a list of the clips, music videos and trailers that 'captured the imaginations of Canadians' in 2016.
Zero shame in her game: Amy Schumer spurns critics over potential Barbie role
Amy Schumer is calling out critics who slammed her potential casting as Barbie in an upcoming live-action film based on the Mattel doll.
CBC MUSIC Making Noise: 10 artists who shaped conversations on music in 2016
From Gord Downie to A Tribe Called Red to Grimes, CBC Music examines 10 important Canadian artists who shaped the conversations we had around music over the past year.
more »

Technology & Science »

New The weather outside is frightful thanks to climate change and the polar vortex
With cold, blustering snowstorms battering the West Coast and the Prairies, you might be tempted to say "What global warming?" But climate change may, in fact, be to blame for this very Canadian winter.
Cassini sends back 1st images from new orbit around Saturn
From its new orbit, NASA's Cassini spacecraft has returned stunning close-up images of Saturn and a raging storm at its north pole.
Award-winning scientist says compromise needed on climate debate
The winner of a major scientific award for his work on Arctic glaciers and climate change says Canadians need to start talking and listening to each other on the problem of global warming.
more »

Money »

WestJet pilots union drive takes flight again
After laying the groundwork for a year, the Air Line Pilots Association has officially launched its drive to unionize WestJet's pilots, following a failed attempt by another association in 2015.
Moose Knuckles, Competition Bureau reach deal over made-in-Canada concerns
High-end winter jacket maker Moose Knuckles and the Competition Bureau have reached a deal over concerns about made-in-Canada claims in the company's advertising and labelling of some of its parkas.
Bank of Canada holds key interest rate steady again
The Bank of Canada says that while the economy gained steam through the last half of 2016, it foresees a slowdown, which is why it has decided to keep its benchmark interest rate where it is for now.
more »

Consumer Life »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Sports »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Profile Chad Johnson seizes long-awaited chance in NHL 'dream job'
Chad Johnson says he was never given the chance to be a No. 1 goaltender in his first five NHL stops. Joining his hometown Calgary Flames as a free agent on July 1 presented another opportunity for Johnson, and he has flourished in a starting role.
Coming Up World short-course swimming championships video
Watch the semifinals and finals tonight at 6:30 p.m. ET as Penny Oleksiak, Katerine Savard and more Canadian swimming stars compete in the world short-course championships in Windsor, Ont.
Video Penny Oleksiak breaks her Canadian 100m freestyle record video
Oleksiak finished with the fastest time in the 100m free heats on Wednesday morning as she advanced to the semifinals of the FINA World Championships.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »