NSBS COVID-19 Update: Office Closed Until June 1, Fees Update, NS Courts FAQs & more

Dear members,

We hope you, your families and your colleagues are keeping well and staying healthy.

Society Office and Law Library Closed until June 1, 2020

Based on government and public health advice and direction, our office and law library at the Law Courts will remain closed to the public until Monday, June 1, 2020.

We continue to work remotely and are available during regular business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM). You can continue to reach our staff using the same contact information.

FAQs regarding matters in the General Division of the Supreme Court

We collaborated with the Courts to develop frequently asked questions about how to file documents, how to make enquiries about urgent matters, how matters are proceeding in the current situation etc. Review these FAQs.

NSBS Fees & LIANS Insurance Levy

We are aware of the challenges and financial strain our members are facing during these difficult times.

The Society and LIANS are deferring the April and May fee and levy payments for members enrolled in our Pre-Authorized Payment Plan (PAP) for this year. This deferral of fees and levy applies only to outstanding fees and levy for this year that have not yet been paid. To those individuals who have already paid their fees and levy in full for this year, we extend our thanks and acknowledgement.

We will contact those members enrolled in our PAP directly to make this arrangement for deferral, if this is what they wish to do. Review the Financial Support FAQs to learn more.

The Society has not yet made a decision with respect to annual fees for the coming fee year July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021. LIANS has not yet made a decision with respect to the levy for the upcoming July 1, 2020 through July 1, 2021 policy year. We will provide an update as soon as possible.

LIANS Claim Surcharge and Individual Deductible

If, as a result of a paid claim, you are currently paying the claim surcharge that is collected with the Society fees, a decision with respect to the surcharge due on July 1, 2020 will be made in concert with the Society’s decision on the 2020-2021 fees.

If you currently owe the individual deductible (i.e. you have a paid claim after September 2018 that triggered the deductible), we will defer payment of your deductible until September 30, 2020.

All in-person events and education sessions cancelled

All in-person events and education sessions are cancelled until mid-June. We will hold our Annual General Meeting virtually on Saturday, June 13, 2020 and members will receive further details about the virtual meeting in the coming weeks.

June Call to the Bar

It is unlikely that we will hold the June Call to the Bar in-person. We are coordinating with the courts to see what options may be available to us.

We understand that this is not ideal for our new admittees but these unprecedented circumstances call for creativity and innovation, while still performing our day-to-day regulatory functions.

What we are working on

We encourage you to review the guidance on our website as we update this page daily with information and advice to support members in the practice of law and delivery of legal services in the context of COVID-19.

We also recognize that members may have questions with respect to limitation periods under statutes. This falls under the responsibility of the Minister of Justice. We have been in touch with the Department of Justice to initiate these discussions.

If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us.

Best wishes for continued good health.

Tilly Pillay QC

Executive Director