Local legal firm launches monthly podcast for non-lawyers

By Lindsay Advocate

Denis Grignon is hosting a new podcast produced by Wards Lawyers.

Lindsay…It’s a show about the law and the lives of the people who practise it.

“But it’s not, necessarily, for lawyers,” explains Melissa Wemyss, CEO of Wards Lawyers, about Wards Legal Matters, a recently launched monthly podcast. “We wanted a show that the average person could connect with. Where they can learn about how the law works – really works. A smart, well-researched and focused show. But also entertaining, using language that anyone could appreciate.”

“So, no cumbersome legalese,” adds Wemyss, who’s also serving as executive producer of Wards Legal Matters. “Just clear, relatable dialogue between the host and the guests.”

It’s why the law firm recruited Denis Grignon to produce and host Wards Legal Matters. The veteran journalist, who continues to write for major publications and contribute documentaries to CBC Radio, says it’s because he is not a lawyer that he’s well-suited for this role. “I have more in common with the listener than the people I’m speaking with on the other side of the table,” explains Grignon, adding that he can’t remember a time when he wasn’t fascinated with the law. “I can ask questions the audience would like answers to, in a manner they can relate to.”

Each episode sees Grignon conducting structured conversations with members of the Wards Lawyers team about a variety of general interest law-related topics.

Indeed, the first instalment saw Grignon in a round table discussion about how the law and lawyers are misrepresented in pop culture – and how real lawyers contend with those fallacies in their real lives.

“Yeah, that was a pretty cathartic conversation,” says Calvin Chan about his participation in that first episode called, ‘Hey, TV! You’re out of order!’ “It really allowed us to explain – and, yes, vent – that real cases, aren’t nicely wrapped-up in 60 minutes, including commercials.”

Future episodes include discussion and analysis on the difference between a judge and a justice of the peace, practising law in a small town, and the eye-opening transition from law school to a law firm.

Wards Legal Matters guests aren’t restricted to just lawyers, either. Some are law clerks, while others are students of law at the local law firm. It’s a programming strategy Wemyss wanted from the outset of the podcast. “This (variety of interviewees) also allows us to show that there are so many different kinds of people, and careers, needed to make the law work, each with their own perspective,” explains Wemyss.

Wards Legal Matters is available to stream and download for free wherever you find your podcasts. It can also be accessed via the Podbean app, and by clicking the link the on the Wards Lawyers Facebook page. New episodes appear on the first of each month.

For more information please contact Melissa Wemyss – CEO of Wards Lawyers, at , or by telephone at (705) 324-9273 ext. 1223.

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