Strategic Research Partner of the American Bar Association's Section of International LawThe Queen's Award for Enterpise 2012

OR

This Special Report covers 35 practice areas.

This will search all specialists in Canada.

Canada In Brief

The biggest story of early 2014 was the collapse of Heenan Blaikie, one of Canada’s largest employment specialist law firms, after 40 years of service. The firm is the largest in Canada to have shut and, in the wake of the announcement in February, many in the market are still waiting to see what the long-term ramifications will be. The firm had 11 labour specialists included in last year’s edition, and so it will be interesting to see how the redistribution of these partners shapes the market in coming years. Top former partners of the firm have headed to established firms Borden Ladner Gervais and Fasken Martineau, while a group of 14 partners – including Heenan Blaikie founder Roy Heenan – started the boutique firm Gall Legge Grant & Munroe. The firm’s demise is a stark reminder for many of the continuing difficulties of running a profitable law firm in the current financial climate, with some firms still struggling to find work and meets clients’ expectations when all the while legal budgets are decreasing.

With M&A activity still low across a range of industry sectors, it has been another tough year for Canadian businesses and legal practitioners. This has had a knock-on effect in a number of other areas in the market, such as corporate tax, where practitioners are left in limbo waiting for deals, while clients are consolidating costs by dealing with some tax issues in-house, further affecting the market. However, some practitioners report seeing a recent increase in the market, while others expect to see an upturn start in the coming months. This optimistic outlook in the market suggests a more promising year to come for practitioners, which will also have an effect of creating more work across the legal marketplace. Despite another trying year for M&A practitioners, we list 36 specialists, six more than in 2013.

Energy is always a hot topic in Canada, and this year the struggle towards getting liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals and related pipeline projects off the ground in the country continued. Lawyers reported the government’s block on international financial involvement in projects has put unnecessary pressure on work, as many projects require foreign input in order to be viable. Concerns are growing that continued delays and blocks in the development and implementation of these projects could lead to other major gas providing states such as Australia getting ahead, meaning that Canada could miss out on being the first to enter a very lucrative market.

Lawyers in the energy sector have also seen increasing awareness of and work relating to indigenous land rights. A ruling in June by the Supreme Court granting land rights to a BC First Nations group has set a precedent for similar cases in the future, and practitioners predict an onslaught in such cases and related compliance work in the coming year. In an area which looks set to get busier in the coming year, 58 practitioners are featured in this edition, an increase of nine from last year’s listing.

Although Canada has always had a strong mining market, the past few years have seen it struggling under the pressures of low gold prices and a scarcity of funding in the field. Practitioners have also noted that a lack of M&A work has added to this pressure, although some report seeing an increase in activity in this area, suggesting that the market may begin to revive a little in the next year. In the meantime, mining companies are looking to alternative sources for finance, with an increase in private equity firms and the use of royalties more prevalent than before.

This year we have combined the fields of information technology and telecoms and media to form a TMT chapter in order to better reflect the trend of convergence in the industry. In a rapidly transforming market, practitioners are reporting high levels of work as clients rush to invent, produce and market “the next big thing” before a rival can. In this new area we list 40 experts.

Following the mergers that created Norton Rose Fulbright and Dentons last year, Canada has seen some renewed interest by other major international firms looking to make their mark on the legal landscape. The announcement by Allen & Overy that it would be opening a satellite office in Toronto will make it the first magic circle firm to move into the country. However, with just one partner and a handful of associates and support staff expected, it might be several years before they make a bigger impact on the market. This move has led to speculation as to whether other international heavy hitters could follow suit. DLA Piper was in negotiations with a number of Heenan Blaikie partners following the firm’s collapse, a move which would have seen it opening an office in the country for the first time. Although these talks did not amount to anything, they highlight the renewed interest in Canada. Yet international firms should tread carefully: national firms still rule supreme and it could be a difficult market to crack.

In this year’s Who’s Who Legal 100, four Canadian firms and six international firms with offices in Canada garner inclusion. This highlights Canada’s continued importance in the global legal market, and international firm Norton Rose Fulbright was once again named our mining firm of the year, aided by its strong Canadian contingent.

In the following pages we highlight the leading firms in the Canadian market, those with the highest number of listings across the 35 practice areas that this edition covers.

Back to top

Analysis: Canada

Arbitration Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Arbitration.

Aviation Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Aviation law. 

Aviation Practice Area Review

ghz

Carlos P Martins, Bersenas Jacobsen Chouest Thomson Blackburn LLP

Banking Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Banking law. 

Business Crime Defence Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Business Crime Defence.

Capital Markets Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Capital Markets.

Commercial Litigation Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Commercial Litigation. 

Competition Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Competition law. 

Construction Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Construction. 

Corporate Immigration Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Corporate Immigration.

Corporate Tax Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Corporate Tax.

Energy Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter,  we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Energy.

Environment Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Environment. 

Franchise Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Franchise law.

Insolvency & Restructuring Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Insolvency & Restructuring.

Insurance & Reinsurance Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Insurance & Reinsurance.

Insurance & Reinsurance Practice Area Review

hgfhgf

Mark Lichty, Blaney McMurtry LLP

Investigations Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Investigations.

Life Sciences Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Life Sciences.

Management Labour & Employment Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Management Labour & Employment. 

Mediation Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Mediation.

Mergers & Acquisitions Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Mergers & Acquisitions. 

Mining Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Mining.

Patents Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Patents. 

Patents Practice Area Review

gfgf

The Utility Of An Invention: The Canadian Approach

Carol Hitchman, Gardiner Roberts LLP

Private Client Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in the field of Private Client law.

Private Funds Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out leading practitioners and firms in Private Funds.

Product Liability Defence Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Product Liablity Defence.

Product Liability Defence Practice Area Review

asdfs

AS THE PENDULUM SWINGS: SHIFTING FORTUNES BETWEEN PLAINTIFFS AND DEFENDANTS IN PRODUCT LIABILITY CLASS ACTIONS IN CANADA

Peter J Pliszka, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP

Project Finance Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Project Finance.

Public Procurement Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Public Procurement.

Real Estate Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Real Estate.

Shipping & Maritime Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter, we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Shipping & Maritime

Sports & Entertainment Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter we single out leading practitioners and firms in Sports & Entertainment.

Technology, Media and Telecommunications Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter we single out leading practitioners and firms in Technology, Media and Telecommunications.

Trade & Customs Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter we single out the leading practitioners and firms in Trade & Customs.

Trademarks Marketplace Analysis

In this chapter we single out the leader practitioners and firms in Trademarks.

Back to top

Firm Profiles: Canada

BENNETT JONES

With five offices in Canada as well as offices in Dubai, Doha and Washington, DC, and a representative office in Beijing, Bennett Jones has a “far-reaching reputation” in the global market. The firm boasts an “enviable roster of clients” attracted by its “excellent client service” and “deep industry knowledge”. The firm achieves 47 listings across 16 practice areas.

BLAKE CASSELS & GRAYDON

Once again Blakes emerges as the leading firm in our report on the Canadian legal market with a total of 108 listings across 26 practice areas, more than any other firm in the research. The firm has 11 offices worldwide and a diverse national and international client base.

BORDEN LADNER GERVAIS

Established in 2000 by the merger of five law firms, Borden Ladner Gervais has since established itself as the largest full-service law firm in Canada, with over 750 lawyers, intellectual property agents and other professionals practising in six offices throughout the jurisdiction. The firm aims to deliver unparalleled service excellence through the maintenance of an integrated, diverse team, which utilises the abilities of individuals with leading expertise across a range of practice areas. 

DAVIES WARD PHILLIPS & VINEBERG

With offices in Toronto, Montreal and New York, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg prides itself on its strong business law focus. The firm boasts an “enviable” reputation in the legal marketplace, as highlighted by our research this year. Clients include governments, regulatory bodies, charitable organisations and financial institutions, many of which attest to the “excellent legal services” that Davies provides. Its elite status is cemented this year as the firm achieves 51 listings across 16 different practice areas.

DAVIS LLP - PROFESSIONAL NOTICE

dv

About Davis LLP

As a national full-service law firm, Davis LLP provides a comprehensive range of legal services to clients around the world through offices across Canada and in Japan. Established in 1892, the firm has more than 250 legal advisers and consultants in almost 50 practice areas representing financial, corporate, government organisations and individuals. The firm’s professionals work in integrated practice groups to seamlessly deliver cross-jurisdictional advice with an unwavering commitment to innovative and outstanding client service. The firm adds value to clients’ businesses by helping them achieve their business objectives and resolve their issues efficiently and effectively.

FASKEN MARTINEAU DUMOULIN

Founded through a merger in 2000 of three regional Canadian firms, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin is a “top-tier” business law and litigation outfit. The firm has established itself as a leader in the Canadian market and has nine offices across Canada, the UK, France and South Africa. Its extensive network of over 770 lawyers worldwide allows the firm to fully service its roster of domestic and international clients. It achieves 58 listings across 22 practice areas this year.

GOWLING LAFLEUR HENDERSON

Gowlings remains a trusted and respected law firm in Canada home to more than 700 legal professionals. Combining industry insight, business acumen and legal expertise, lawyers at Gowlings are highly sought after by clients in a broad range of industries. In this edition, the firm achieves 46 listings in 18 chapters.

MCCARTHY TÉTRAULT

As one of Canada’s leading law firms, McCarthy Tétrault has a reputation for providing “service of the highest quality” and has remained consistent in its achievements since its establishment. With offices in five Canadian states as well as a UK arm, the firm serves a diverse client base and some of its accomplishments can be seen in our research with an impressive 90 listings across 26 practice areas.

NORTON ROSE FULBRIGHT

Norton Rose Fulbright is one of the largest law firms in the world with strength and depth across key industry sectors and a network of 54 offices that extends to all the major global financial centres. Its presence in Canada is commensurately strong with offices in Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec and Toronto. Indeed, with such a strong establishment both within Canada and internationally, the firm continues to yield a commanding presence in this publication with 55 listings.

OSLER HOSKIN & HARCOURT

Osler Hoskin & Harcourt is one of the leading business law firms in Canada with offices across the country as well as in New York. Thanks to its established position in the legal market, the firm attracts a number of high calibre clients. It is well known for its ability to provide “innovative, solutions-oriented advice” establishing its standing in the higher echelons of the Canadian legal market. Osler achieves 53 listings across 19 practice areas.

STIKEMAN ELLIOTT

Stikeman Elliott is one of the most prominent firms in the Canadian market and is home to talented practitioners across its five Canadian offices and international offices in New York, London and Sydney. The firm provides a “top-tier service” across a full range of practice areas and garners 67 inclusions across 21 different sections of this edition.

TORYS

“Leading” full-service firm Torys has three offices across Canada, in Calgary, Toronto and Montreal, as well as a presence in New York. It boasts expertise across an impressive array of areas and especially stands out for its strength in capital markets, private funds, life sciences and litigation. In this edition it achieves 52 listings across 21 different fields, which demonstrates both the breadth and depth of its practitioners’ skills.

Back to top

Corporate Counsel Q&A: Canada

Corporate Counsel Q&A: Canada 2012

FG

April French discusses with Fernando Garcia, the general counsel of Navistar, his views on the evolving Canadian legal marketplace, the skills he looks for in external counsel and the challenges and opportunities for manufacturing companies in Canada.

Back to top

All Lawyers

Special Reports

Brazil

Canada

France

Germany

Ghana

Japan

Mexico

Nigeria

Russia

Switzerland

Turkey

Practice Areas

News & Features

Firms

The Who's Who Legal 100

Awards

Events

Shop

About Us

It is not possible to buy entry into any Who's Who Legal publication

Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

Copyright © 2014 Law Business Research Ltd. All rights reserved. | http://www.lbresearch.com

87 Lancaster Road, London, W11 1QQ, UK | Tel: +44 20 7908 1180 / Fax: +44 207 229 6910

http://www.whoswholegal.com | editorial@whoswholegal.com

Law Business Research Ltd

87 Lancaster Road, London
W11 1QQ, UK