French Language Rights and Obligations: What All Lawyers Should Know (Archived Video Stream) 

May 5, 2021

OBA Official Languages Committee PROGRAM | Original Program Date: May 5, 2021

The OBA continues to be an advocate for eliminating language, cultural and other barriers to full and equal justice – for Francophones, Indigenous peoples and members of Ontario’s many cultural and racialized groups. Our two official languages of Canada, English and French, play an important role in the lives of many Ontarians. For this reason, there are key statutory provisions and professional obligations from the Rules of Professional Conduct related to language rights that lawyers need to understand. Lawyers are also required to advise clients of their language rights, which includes the right to use the official language of their choice.

Our panel discussion will examine constitutional and statutory provisions which serve to promote substantive equality of both official languages and provide an overview of professional and ethical obligations regarding clients’ rights to French language services in the justice sector. Join us as our expert faculty:

  • Examines language rights issues in the context of criminal, civil, family, and administrative tribunal processes
  • Highlights key provisions dealing with language rights in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Criminal Code, the Courts of Justice Act and the French Language Services Act
  • Provides best practices for advising clients about their language rights in accordance with the Rules of Professional Conduct
  • Explores potential legislative developments regarding language rights in Ontario

This valuable discussion will broaden your legal toolbox and assist you in complying with your professional obligations while promoting access to justice for official-language minority communities.

Please note that this program will be offered in English.


Vincent M. de Grandpré, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP


Hon. Julie A. Thorburn, Court of Appeal for Ontario
Louise Hurteau, Law Society of Ontario
Renée A. Kopp, Jones Kopp Litigation Partners LLP
Christine Mainville, Henein, Hutchison LLP
Angela Ogang, AngeLAW
Gabriel Poliquin, Caza Saikaley srl/LLP


CBA Member: $25*
CBA Student Member : Complimentary
Non-Member: $50*

*Plus les taxes applicables / *plus applicable taxes


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