University of Saskatchewan partners with U of Ottawa on French common law certificate

A new certificate in French common law will provide new opportunities for bilingual students and increase access to legal services in French in francophone minority communities.

The Certificate in French Common Law (CCLF) will be offered through a partnership between the University of Saskatchewan’s (U of S) College of Law and the University of Ottawa’s French common law section.

“Often lawyers who speak French, but completed their JD (Juris Doctor) in English, don’t feel comfortable offering legal services in French without having specialized training in French advocacy and legal writing,” said University of Ottawa Common Law Section Dean Nathalie Des Rosiers. “We created this certificate to complement English JD programs, and we are pleased the University of the Saskatchewan College of Law is partnering with us on this innovative initiative.”

“The francophone community in Saskatchewan has been underserved when it comes to getting legal services in the official language of their choosing,” said Beth Bilson, interim dean in the U of S College of Law. “We are proud to be partnering with the University of Ottawa to begin to address this issue."

“The Fransaskois legal community is happy to be a part of this wonderful initiative. We look forward to helping students enrolled in the CCLF by ensuring that they have mentors and excellent internships within Saskatchewan,” said Francis Poulin, president of the Law Association of French-speaking Saskatchewan (Association des juristes d’expression française de la Saskatchewan). “The CCLF is a first step towards a rewarding legal career and the ability to serve clients in in both official languages.”

The U of Ottawa’s CCLF is the first of its kind in Canada. It will allow law students to take part of their course-load in French, complete an exchange in Ottawa, compete in a moot court competition with teams from across Canada, be paired with experienced mentors in the legal profession, and have the opportunity to complete a credited internship with law firms, organizations and government actors that work in French in Saskatchewan. The U of S will be the first partnership institution to offer this new certificate, beginning in the fall of 2016.

For more information, visit the program page.

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