Office of the Assistant Deputy Attorney General (ADAG)
The office of the ADAG provides executive leadership, management and direction to staff in LSB. The Executive Leadership Team includes the ADAG, the Chief of Legal Strategy, and the Chief of Legal Operations.
The ADAG reports to the Deputy Attorney General and is accountable for all legal services provided to the Government of British Columbia. These include civil matters (both legal advice and legal opinions), the negotiation and drafting of agreements, the representation of the Government of British Columbia before courts and tribunals and the drafting of legislation and regulations.
Lawyers in the ADAG’s office provide advice, generally, to the Premier, the Premier’s office, cabinet, cabinet operations and other government ministries and agencies. They also assist the ADAG with strategic planning, knowledge management and special projects.
Articled students participating in a rotation in the ADAG’s office will assist with these functions. They may conduct research and write on a variety of legal and policy issues and may participate in meetings in relation to the functions of the ADAG’s office and its lawyers. Students participating in this rotation should expect to carry a diverse workload, must be prepared to manage their time and workload, and should approach the rotation with the flexibility to assist with a wide range of duties.
Transportation, Lands, Resources and Environment Units
The Resource and Environment Unit:
- provides legal advice and opinions to ministries managing the environment, provincial fisheries, forests, mines and minerals, energy, agriculture, water, lands and other natural resources;
- supports barristers who represent statutory decision makers from ministry clients in legal proceedings before administrative tribunals, including statutory appeals and other administrative proceedings. Lawyers in this group work with ministry clients by providing advice to them in relation to resource related tenuring and on issues arising in the administration of environmental and resource related legislation.
The Transportation and Lands Unit:
- provides advice to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, which includes legal assistance in operations and contractual matters and in major infrastructure projects for highways, bridges, rail, ferries and transit projects and real property work related to highway operations, transportation and infrastructure projects; and
- provides advice on land transactions and real property matters.
Central Services Group
The Central Services Group provides specialized legal services to key ministries and areas within government that provide centralized services to the rest of government, including the Ministry of Citizen’s Services, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Jobs, Economic Development and Competitiveness, the BC Public Service Agency, the Corporate Information and Records Management Office, the Crown Agencies and Board Resourcing Office, the Office of the Chief Information Officer, the Office of the Comptroller General, the Provincial Treasury, Treasury Board Staff, Destination BC, Corporate Registries, the Risk Management Branch and the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate.
Our diverse subject areas of legal practice include freedom of information and privacy, employment and labour, corporate finance and securities, and commercial, corporate and transactional services in the areas of procurement, real property, construction, information management / information technology, intellectual property and trade.
Within the Central Services Group practice areas, articling students will receive hands-on experience with the following:
- Financial transactions;
- Negotiation, drafting and settlement of contracts;
- Government communications, protocol and events;
- Preparing submissions to the Information and Privacy Commissioner;
- Financial budgeting, borrowing and securities matters;
- Crown corporation governance;
- Procurement processes and trade law; and
- Advising generally on government operations and policy, legislation and legislative amendments.
Office of Legislative Counsel
The primary responsibility of the Office of Legislative Counsel is to draft all Bills, Regulations and Orders in Council for the government.
A student on rotation with Legislative Counsel might be asked to:
- Draft an amendment to an Act or a regulation;
- Draft or review an Order in Council;
- Provide advice to enacting authorities respecting proposed regulations and Orders in Council;
- Review and provide Legislative Counsel advice to Cabinet on a Request for Legislation;
- Participate in a drafting meeting;
- Provide an opinion on a matter of statutory interpretation or parliamentary procedure;
- Research statutory authority for regulations and Orders in Council;
- Research legislation of other jurisdictions; and
- Work on an Act or regulation revision.
Justice Services Branch
Justice Services Branch is responsible for government policy direction, legislation and law reform, as well as all provincial government family justice programs and services. Students may choose a rotation in either of the Policy and Legislation Division or the Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation Division.
Policy and Legislation Division
The Policy and Legislation Division (PLD) develops civil and criminal justice policy and leads the development and implementation of the ministry’s core legislation program. The division delivers on government legislation and regulations relating to campaign finance reform; electoral reform; adult guardianship; civil enforcement of judgments; lobbyist registration; and a number of other legislative initiatives, including the Public Interest Disclosure Act, Protection of Public Participation Act, Class Proceedings Act, Legal Profession Act, Ombudsperson Act, Public Guardian and Trustee Act and numerous others.
PLD leads BC’s human rights legislation and policy and reports out on BC’s obligations under treaties Canada has entered into. PLD is also the ministry resource responsible for leading the Province’s participation in judicial compensation commissions and related discussions, as well as providing direction to litigation counsel.
PLD also provides ongoing policy development and project support in the areas of:
- Civil and criminal justice, including access to justice;
- Support to the Legal Services Society;
- Support to the Independent Investigations Office;
- National criminal law reform, including Federal/Provincial/Territorial linkages;
- The specialized courts strategy;
- Indigenous justice;
- Gladue reports, Rowbotham applications and amicus curiae appointments, legal and policy issues; and
- General law reform through the Uniform Law Conference of Canada.
Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation Division
The Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation Division (FPLTD) is a team of ministry staff responsible for private family justice policy and legislation. FPLTD leads legislative amendment and reform projects regarding the following private family law statutes and associated regulations: the Family Law Act; the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act; and the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act. FPLTD provides policy support to ministry executive and the Attorney General throughout the legislative process.
FPLTD also leads the ministry’s involvement in a multi-year project to reform the Provincial Court Family Rules being conducted jointly with the Provincial Court judiciary.
FPLTD has responsibility for developing and leading the ministry’s family justice transformation strategy that includes a number of projects to improve the public’s access to information and services related to family justice. FPLTD provides as-needed policy support to the ministry’s Family Justice Services Division and Maintenance Enforcement and Locate Services.
FLPTD also participates as ministry representatives on Federal / Provincial / Territorial committees and working groups related to family justice policy and legislation.