The Government of British Columbia is appointing a new Provincial Court judge to support the judiciary with the resources required to continue providing access to justice.
The appointment of a new judge will fill the judicial vacancy created by upcoming retirements and help to address a backlog of cases as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also help with workload issues in Kamloops, the Interior region and in virtual courts throughout the province.
Lorianna Bennett will be appointed in Kamloops, effective June 7, 2021.
Bennett was called to the bar in 1998 and has worked as a lawyer in Kamloops at Paul & Company for 19 years. She is noted to be a strong, knowledgeable and collaborative family lawyer. She devotes some of her practice to personal injury litigation and gives back to the profession by teaching and volunteering extensively in her community. She has also been active in the local bar and the Canadian Bar Association, B.C. branch. She is passionate about public speaking and advocating for others.
In 2010, Bennett was the recipient of the Thompson Rivers University Distinguished Alumni Award for her community service. Her most recent recognition includes the 2020 Kamloops This Week Reader’s Choice Award for Best Lawyer. She has been a professional member of the Royal Inland Hospital Foundation since 2004.
This appointment decision takes into account a number of factors, including the needs of the court, the diversity of the bench and a candidate's expertise. These factors are essential for maintaining the public’s confidence in the courts and are a vital component of any democratic justice system.
In addition to the above, judges and justices must devote themselves exclusively to their judicial duties. No judge may hold any other paid position or engage in any business enterprise.
- The process to appoint judges involves the following steps:
- Interested lawyers apply, and the Judicial Council of B.C. reviews the candidates.
- The council is a statutory body made up of the chief judge, an associate chief judge, other judges, lawyers and members from outside the legal profession.
- The council recommends potential judges to the attorney general, with the final appointment made through a cabinet order-in-council.
- Although judges are located in a judicial region, many travel regularly throughout the province to meet changing demands.
For information about the judicial appointment process, visit: www.provincialcourt.bc.ca