exclusively to his concern that he may be in a conflict of interest
with his client if he was required to sue his client for non-payment of fees. No doubt, the legal assistant’s affidavit and
trial counsel’s submissions connect the non-payment of fees to
the eventual loss of confidence and the breakdown of the relationship. This is hardly a surprising connection. Counsel’s representations that ethical reasons prevented him from continuing
to act cannot be read as limited to his concerns about possibly
suing his client for his fees. Trial counsel expressly indicated
that the concerns went well beyond that.
 On my review of the transcript, trial counsel made it
abundantly clear that there had been a complete breakdown
in the client-solicitor relationship and that for that reason he
could not continue to act for the appellant. The trial judge was
required to accept that representation and remove trial counsel
from the record. By requiring counsel to remain on the record,
the appellant was left to be defended on a first degree murder
charge, not by counsel fully and unequivocally committed to his
defence, but by counsel who had announced to the court that he
could not, in good conscience, continue to act for the appellant.
The trial judge’s ruling rendered the appearance of the trial
unfair and resulted in a miscarriage of justice, requiring a new
trial: R. v. Rushlow (2009), 96 O.R. (3d) 302,  O.J. No.
2335, 2009 ONCA 461, 245 C.C.C. (3d) 505, at paras. 35-37.
 Before leaving this issue, I will comment on the trial
judge’s decision to not hear from the appellant personally in the
course of trial counsel’s application to be removed from the record. I understand the trial judge’s concern that the appellant not
be put in a position where he might inadvertently say something
compromising client-solicitor privilege. However, on an application by trial counsel to be removed from the record, it is imperative that the client’s position be known to the judge hearing the
application. Some inquiry, albeit one carefully circumscribed to
avoid entrenching on client-solicitor privilege, is necessary.
 A client is entitled to discharge counsel at any time for
any reason. If a client does not want to be represented by a particular counsel, the court cannot force that representation on the
client: David Layton and Hon. Michel Proulx, at p. 543; R. v.
Chemama,  O.J. No. 4177, 2016 ONCA 579, 351 O.A.C.
381, at para. 58.
 In deciding trial counsel’s application, the trial judge had
to know whether the appellant wanted trial counsel to continue
to act for him in light of trial counsel’s application and representations made in that application. Without making that inquiry,
the trial judge was in no position to force counsel to continue to