On December 17, 2003, Mr. Justice Taylor of the Supreme Court of British Columbia issued reasons for judgment in Gibbs v. Law Society of British Columbia, holding that the Law Society has the power to compel its members to pay “equivalent to membership fees” in the CBA. Although s. 24(1) of the Legal Profession Act provides that the Law Society may “act as agent of the Canadian Bar Association for the purpose of collecting fees of that association from lawyers who are members of it”, the judge found that it was within the general mandate of the Law Society to collect fees from non-members also.

The decision is posted at www.bccba.org. There is no word yet on whether Mr. Gibbs, a past president of the Law Society, will appeal the decision.