2023 BCCAT Education Conference Series: A2J Everyday

BCCAT is thrilled to announce that CBABC is a supporting partner of this year's conference. If you are a CBA member, kindly indicate this on your registration form to receive a preferred rate.

This year, BCCAT’s conference will be delivered as an online conference series with events scheduled over three Wednesdays in October:

October 11th 10:00am to 1:30pm
October 18th 10:00am to 1:30pm
October 25th 10:00am to 1:30pm

*The Conference Series will be recorded and available to registered participants upon request after October 25th.

This conference series will dive deep into the important topic of access to justice and will be full of practical sessions you won't want to miss. BCCAT's Conference Committee is committed to providing something valuable for all conference attendees and to that end has even made exciting changes to BCCAT's annual administrative law update session. See details below!

Conference Session Summaries:

A2J and AI

The future is here. Artificial intelligence is everywhere, and administrative law professionals need to know how the use of AI in the legal sphere impacts decision making. Join us as we engage with legal scholars researching artificial intelligence and administrative law. Speakers will touch on the application of principles of administrative law to automated decision-making and the role AI might play as we navigate this rapidly developing technology. We will also hear a word of caution regarding privacy concerns that can arise with the use of AI in decision making.

Administrative Law Primer

Administrative law is rooted in certain foundational principles. This session will provide an overview of those fundamentals in practice. The panelists will also address how courts interpret and apply administrative law principles in reviewing decisions on judicial review, and the basic steps administrative decision-makers can take to ensure their decisions are reasonable and procedures are fair. This session is recommended for those who are new to administrative law or would benefit from a refresher on general principles.

Administrative Law Update

Developments in administrative law jurisprudence can have significant implications for decision-makers and others in the administrative law realm. The panelists will provide a curated overview of recent jurisprudence, focussing on recurring themes and key developments in administrative law in the province. This session is intended to keep participants apprised of recent developments in the case law and their potential implications.

User Experience: A Tour of Innovation

User experience is often referenced when discussing access to justice. In administrative law, this refers to what your users think and feel about their experiences accessing tribunal services. This session will explore different ways the administrative law community is using user experience to inform process and convey information. The expert panel will discuss the importance of gathering user-centered data, unique ways of gathering user experience, and the use of video to explain complex processes while breaking down barriers.

User Experience Through A Reconciliation Lens

This session explores the first hand experiences of the Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal, the Environmental Appeal Board, and the Oil and Gas Tribunal as they harness user experience to inform their reconciliation journeys. Our speakers will share insight gained and lessons learned.

Accessibility Awareness: Making Justice Accessible for Everyone

In June 2021, the Accessible BC Act became law. The Act sets out accessibility standards for the province and many tribunals are legislated to comply with the Act by September 2024. As tribunal staff and adjudicators, we have an obligation to foster accessibility, making justice accessible for all. In this session, Disability Alliance BC will guide registrants through their obligations under the Accessible BC Act and will provide helpful guidance on meeting these obligations to create accessible tribunals.

Plain Language Rules: A Look at the Social Security Tribunal of Canada

Legalese is everywhere, but the move toward plain language is certainly making inroads, especially with tribunals. While much of the focus on plain language to date has been on decision writing, cumbersome and daunting rules of practice and procedure are often overlooked. This session will provide an in-depth look at what the federal Social Security Tribunal of Canada did to create plain language rules in their quest to ensure that everyone understands their processes.

The 5 Commandments of Clear Communications

Back by popular demand! In this interactive session, acclaimed legal writing consultant, Stephanie Mitchell, will guide us through the 5 commandments of clear communications. This is a session not to be missed. Tips will touch on a variety of different modes of communication, ensuring there is something for everyone to take away from this engaging session.

Words Matter: Inclusive Language

Words matter. Tribunals aim to provide justice for everyone, yet the language used in our communications is often exclusionary. Join experts from the Government Communications and Public Engagement office who will present best practices for inclusive language. Whether you are tribunal staff or an adjudicator writing decisions, knowing what words to use is a step toward access to justice for all.