Lawyers Should Not Give Evidence In Cases They Argue
Hughes v Moncton ( City) 2006 NBCA 83states a cardinal rule of “lawyering”:
J.T. Robertson J.A.:
1 Once again this court must caution lawyers not to argue cases in which they have submitted affidavit evidence in support of a contentious issue. The common law rule is straightforward: a lawyer cannot act as both counsel and witness in the same proceeding. Moreover, the common law rule has found its way into the Law Society of New Brunswick’s “Code of Professional Conduct”: see Chapter 8, Commentary 6. This is not to deny that the law permits the giving of affidavit evidence with respect to formal or procedural matters, so long as those matters are and remain uncontested.
Trevor Todd is one of the province’s most esteemed estate litigation lawyers. He has spent more than 45 years helping the disinherited contest wills and transfers – and win. From his Kerrisdale office, which looks more like an eclectic art gallery than a lawyer’s office, Trevor empowers claimants and restores dignity to families across BC. He is a mentor to young entrepreneurs and an art buff who supports starving artists the world over. He has an eye for talent and a heart for giving back.