August 24, 2021
Alberta Justice and Solicitor General Seeking Feedback on Guarantees Acknowledgment Act (GAA)
The GAA was enacted in 1939 as consumer protection legislation. Under the GAA, a guarantee is given when a person enters into an obligation under a deed or written agreement to answer for another party's default or omission.

Alberta is the only province with this legislation. A guarantee that is subject to the GAA is not legally enforceable in Alberta unless certain requirements are met. The GAA requires an individual guarantor to appear before a lawyer and acknowledge that he or she is the person who executed the guarantee. The lawyer must then examine the person to be satisfied that the guarantor is aware of the contents of the guarantee and understands its effect. On being satisfied, the lawyer then issues a certificate to that effect, which must be signed by the guarantor.

The COVID-19 pandemic required amendments to the GAA and Regulation to allow for two-way videoconferencing. The COVID-19 Pandemic Response Statutes Amendment Act, 2020 amended the GAA to allow for signing and witnessing of documents via videoconferencing to complete certificates under the GAA and its Regulation. The Regulation allows for this practice to continue until August 15, 2022.

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General is soliciting feedback from those who have experience in applying the GAA. The feedback will be used to determine if the protection the GAA seeks to provide is still needed and, if it is, to determine how the GAA is working, in practice, and whether amendments are needed to allow it to work more effectively. Alternatively, if the GAA is no longer serving the purpose for which it was intended, whether the GAA and Regulation can be repealed.

The GAA can be found here. The Regulation can be found here.

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General is seeking feedback on whether the GAA should be repealed, retained, or retained with amendments (and the reason for amendments). This feedback would be appreciated by Sept. 24, 2021 and may be emailed to the Alberta Justice and Solicitor General.
Recruiting Firms and Organizations for the 2022 Indigenous Summer Student Program
The Indigenous Summer Student Program (ISSP) for 1L and 2L law students is recruiting firms and organizations to participate in the 2022 summer student cycle.

The purpose of the program is to:

  • Allow law firms and the legal profession to gain greater insight into Indigenous culture and issues;
  • Provide an opportunity for Indigenous law students early in their legal career to obtain work experience in a law firm or organization; and
  • Foster opportunities for ongoing relationships to develop between the Indigenous students and practising lawyers.

Firms and organizations that are interested in participating can review the criteria for program and submit their application on our website.

Over the past 16 years, this program has received ongoing support from many law firms as well as government and other organizations resulting in employment opportunities for Indigenous law students. The Law Society does not have a role in the hiring process or the employment relationship. We will provide ongoing support and education to program participants, firms and organizations.

We encourage you to submit your applications as soon as possible, and if you have questions please reach out to the Program Coordinator.
Upcoming Webinar: Eugene J. Creighton, QC: A Survivor’s Story: My Journey from Indian Residential School to Success
To commemorate Orange Shirt Day and National Truth and Reconciliation Day, the Law Society is honoured to have Eugene J. Creighton, QC, Aakaota’si (Owns Many Horses), as a guest speaker on Wednesday, Sept, 29 at noon, where he will share his story on how he survived residential school, how he used it to take on challenges in life and how to take next steps towards reconciliation. 

Eugene is a member of the Kainai/Blood Tribe, of the Blackfoot Confederacy situated on the Ancestral Territory of the Blackfoot which encompasses the Treaty 7 area. He is an accomplished lawyer, retired Provincial Court Judge and rodeo champion. During his childhood, he spent 9 years at the St. Mary’s Indian Residential School. 

Register for the webinar to hear his powerful message. This webinar is limited to the first 500 registrants.
Judicial Appointments
Congratulations to the Honourable Justice Anne Kirker, former Law Society President, who was elevated to the Court of Appeal of Alberta on Aug. 6, 2021.

Justice Kirker served as a Bencher of the Law Society from 2012 to 2016 and as President from 2016 to 2017.

We also extend our congratulations to the Honourable Justice L. Bernadette Ho who was elevated to the Court of Appeal of Alberta on Aug. 4, 2021, as well as Justice Colin C.J. Feasby and Justice Eleanor J. Funk who were appointed to the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta.

For more information, read the Government of Canada Department of Justice’s news release.
Upcoming Events
Visit our Events page for a full list of upcoming events.