The Patrick D. Schmidt Future of Family Law Award

This award was established to honour the late Patrick D. Schmidt  and to promote excellence in the profession by supporting junior lawyers in their early years of practice who are choosing to dedicate their practice to family law. Patrick Schmidt was a well-respected lawyer whose primary practice was family law. He was admired for his commitment to his practice, to his clients and to bettering other lawyers through teaching and mentoring. Throughout his career, Patrick Schmidt demonstrated a high level of respect for the privilege of being a member of the legal profession, The Advocates' Society and what it means to be a lawyer.

Nominations are now open for The Patrick D. Schmidt Future of Family Law Award. Nominate a deserving advocate by July 8, 2024. The award will be presented at The Advocates' Society Fall Forum in October 2024.

Nomination Form

Selection Criteria:

Nominations for lawyers who have been practicing for 10 years or less will be accepted. In addition to being nominated by others, candidates can nominate themselves. Criteria for the recipient of the award will include a commitment to:
  • furthering excellence in family law, to the highest level of professionalism in the service of their clients;
  • skillful advocacy;
  • civility;
  • the importance of giving back to the profession through teaching and/or mentoring;
  • giving back to the community whether through pro bono work or otherwise;
  • and a proven commitment to family law practice and a demonstrated desire to excel as an advocate.
The recipient must be a lawyer in good standing with a Canadian Law Society. Membership in The Advocates’ Society is not required.

The recipient will receive the following:
  • One (1) year of complimentary membership in The Advocates’ Society
  • One (1) complimentary full day advocacy CLE program delivered by The Advocates’ Society within one year of the award presentation
  • $2,000 cash prize provided by Thomson Rogers LLP
  • One (1) complimentary registration to Fall Forum (value up to $500)
  • Travel & Accommodation stipend of up to $1,000 to attend Fall Forum (hotel and travel expenses up to $1,000 will be reimbursed by Thomson Rogers upon provision of receipts).
The award will be presented biennially at the Fall Forum legal conference hosted by The Young Advocates' Standing Committee. The next Fall Forum is scheduled to take place in October 2024.