Aird & Berlis LLP is a prominent law firm with a diversified local, national and international practice. Our firm has a well-established client base which includes large multinational corporations, as well as a wide array of entrepreneurial businesses, associations, government agencies and individuals.
Our principal areas of practice are as follows:
Communications: (Contact: John D. Andrew (416) 865-3404). We provide clients with advice on the full spectrum of strategic and service-related commercial law, distribution and complex regulatory matters. Advising novel real estate developers, working with municipalities, negotiating and drafting telecom supply and service agreements, assisting in the design technology of joint venture agreements and helping guide branding and trade-mark arrangements are key components of our everyday work.
Corporate/Commercial: (Contact: Cecilia M. Moffat (416) 865-7782). We provide comprehensive services to public and private corporations, partnerships and trusts relating to: corporate governance issues; negotiation and structuring of business transactions — corporate acquisitions, divestitures, reorganizations and restructurings; establishing domestic and international franchises, licensing arrangements, distributorships and joint ventures; and arrangements for the commercial exploitation and use of technology. We address competition issues along with restrictive trade practices, including: monopolization, restraint of trade, predatory pricing, price maintenance and discrimination and misleading marketing practices.
Corporate Finance: (Contact: Thomas A. Fenton (416) 865-4631). We have exceptional expertise in all aspects of domestic and international public and private debt and equity financings, rights offerings, take-over bids, reorganizations, mergers, acquisitions and divestiture transactions, including: leveraged buyouts, management buyouts, “going private” transactions, securities regulatory compliance, independent committee representation, proxy battles, periodic and continuous disclosure and corporate governance.
Energy: (Contact: Fred D. Cass (416) 865-7742, Ron W. Clark (416) 865-7701 or Dennis M. O'Leary (416) 865-4711). We are recognized as experts by the energy law community, the Ontario Energy Association and other energy market participants such as producers, brokers, industrial users, utilities, developers, governments and lenders. We advise domestic and international clients on generation, cogeneration, district energy, nuclear, electricity and gas distribution, geothermal and geo-exchange, conservation and demand management, emissions trading, power transmission, smart meters, financing, corporate structures, joint ventures, outsourcing and mergers and acquisitions.
Environmental: (Contact: Dennis O'Leary (416) 865-4711 or Scott Stoll (416) 865-4703). We counsel private and public sector clients on all areas of environmental law, including: corporate transactions, brownfields redevelopment, defence of environmental prosecutions and other litigation, inspections/investigations and environmental SWAT response, project management and strategic environmental advice, environmental assessments as well as regulatory intervention training.
Financial Services: (Contact: D. Robb English (416) 865-4748). We have expertise in finance, insolvency and restructuring. Our work includes: syndications, secured transactions, asset-based lending, multi-currency loans, multijurisdictional transactions, securitizations, equipment leases, bullion loans, project and trade financing, acquisition financing and infrastructure privatization financing. We provide innovative transactional advice to clients, particularly with respect to out-of-court restructurings and the purchase and sale of insolvent businesses. We also advise on security enforcement, receiverships, proposals and reorganizations under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA).
Franchise and Distribution Law: (Contact: Edward (Ned) Levitt (416) 865-4628). Our franchise lawyers are leading authorities in all aspects of franchise and distribution law. They have represented some of the world's foremost franchises and have provided legal services to Canadian and international clients on all aspects of Canadian franchise law.
Gaming: (Contact: Joel M. Rose, QC (416) 865-3408). We act on behalf of regulators, casinos, racetracks, gaming software developers and service providers, bingo operators, special events organizers and gaming equipment manufacturers. We provide counsel on foreign and domestic Internet-based gaming opportunities, responses to tenders, service contracts, supply and facility contracts, development and service agreements, purchase and sale transactions, licensing and regulatory screening and various commercial contracts. Our knowledge and expertise in technology, regulatory compliance, commercial contracting and licensing, real estate, tax and corporate structuring and litigation enables us to provide our clients with the most focused and skilled level of legal service available in the gaming industry.
Infrastructure: (Contact: Douglas J.S. Younger (416) 865-4140 or Heidi Visser (416) 865-4141). Our team of experts is comprised of lawyers from a number of areas of law, including: construction, real estate, environmental, energy, procurement, corporate finance, banking, insurance, dispute resolution and labour. Our lawyers are actively involved in dozens of major construction projects and numerous public-private partnerships (P3). We have extensive experience in advising private and public sector clients, including: municipalities, government and independent agencies, gas and electricity utilities, waste services companies, hospitals and others.
Intellectual Property: (Contact: R. Grant Cansfield (416) 865-7741). We are actively involved in structuring, documenting and implementing coordinated Canada-wide and worldwide protection and enforcement of all forms of intellectual rights. Our professionals provide advice on: creating, using, protecting and licensing musical works, information technology and Internet content; intellectual property aspects of business acquisitions; and tax-motivated public offerings and other creative financings based on intellectual property, such as feature films and computer software.
International: (Contact: Jack Bernstein (416) 865-7766 or Martin E. Kovnats (416) 865-3419). We have extensive experience in acting for international and Canadian clients in many areas, including: taxation, mergers and acquisitions, securities, strategic alliances, financing, banking, insolvency, restructuring and real estate investment. We are committed to being the Canadian gateway for our clients.
Labour and Employment: (Contact: Eldon Bennett (416) 865-7704). We provide advice and representation to employers and employees on a broad spectrum of labour and employment law matters such as: wrongful dismissal, employment contracts, fiduciary duties, unfair competition, restrictive covenants, interlocutory injunctions and employee issues arising in commercial transactions. We also regularly represent employers in labour arbitrations and before various labour and employment-related tribunals.
Litigation: (Contact: Paul V. McCallen (416) 865-7723). We act in all forms of litigation — mediation and alternative dispute resolution, trials, appeals, arbitration panels and administrative tribunals. Our litigators have a wealth of experience in efficiently and aggressively representing clients involved in business disputes of all types. We provide specialized representation before federal and provincial tribunals, including: Investment Canada, the Ontario Energy Board, the Ontario Securities Commission, the Competition Tribunal, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, the Labour Relations Board, the Human Rights Commission and the Ontario Municipal Board, as well as the Federal Court of Canada, Federal Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada.
Mergers and Acquisitions: (Contact: Martin E. Kovnats (416) 865-3419). We act for all participants in the M&A sector, including: publicly listed and privately held buyers and sellers, investment bankers, special committees of boards of directors, management-led buyout groups, venture capital and private equity funds, merchant banks, corporate lenders, arbitrageurs and institutional investors. Our team provides experienced counsel on all types of public and private M&A transactions, including: traditional stock and asset purchases, complex share exchanges, mergers, amalgamations, reorganizations, plans of arrangement, take-overs (friendly and hostile), reverse take-overs, leveraged and management buyouts and joint ventures.
Mining: (Contact: Thomas A. Fenton (416) 865-4631 or Martin E. Kovnats (416) 865-3419). Our multidisciplinary team represents Canadian and non-Canadian issuers of equity and debt, underwriters, promoters, financial advisors, investors (equity and debt) and project financiers in their legal needs for capital markets, regulatory or other legal matters. We provide comprehensive and strategic counsel, and are committed to opening doors in Canada for mining clients domestically and from all parts of the world.
Municipal and Land Use Planning: (Contact: Patricia A. Foran (416) 865-3425). Our highly recognized team acts on behalf of landowners, developers, municipalities, housing providers and various public interest groups. We represent clients before the courts and various tribunals dealing with land use, such as the Ontario Municipal Board. As well, we appear regularly before local and regional councils, land division committees and committees of adjustment. When representing municipalities, we cover all municipal law matters, including restructuring and municipal finance, and assist with bylaw drafting and the negotiation of numerous types of agreements and documents.
Occupational Health and Safety: (Cynthia R.C. Sefton (416) 865-4730). We are well-versed in Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA). We work with clients in various industries to create solutions that achieve legislative compliance and manage risks. We strive to ensure our clients avoid costly litigation. Our team provides comprehensive and strategic counsel with respect to occupational health and safety issues, such as: OHSA compliance, workplace audits, policies and procedures, training for senior executives, managers and supervisors, health and safety inspections, critical injuries and fatalities, occupational health and safety violations and implementing and improving occupational health and safety programs.
Private Business Services: (Contact: Cecilia M. Moffat (416) 865-7782 or Nick Torchetti (416) 865-7752). We advise individuals, family businesses and private companies on matters spanning the day-to-day issues of managing and operating a private business. From reorganizations, acquisitions and divestitures to resolving shareholder disputes, and negotiating, drafting and settling commercial agreements, we provide a full-range of corporate, tax and estate planning services.
Real Estate: (Contact: S. Michael Brooks (416) 865-3422). A recognized leader in Canada, we have extensive experience representing clients involved in the development, construction and management of office buildings, hotels, residential and commercial condominiums, residential rental projects, retirement homes and shopping centres. We regularly guide clients through acquisitions and divestitures, financings, land development, joint ventures, syndications, reorganizations, financial workouts, construction projects, leasing, infrastructure planning and procurement.
Tax: (Contact: Jack Bernstein (416) 865-7766, David Malach (416) 865-7702 or Barbara J. Worndl (416) 865-7754). We are highly regarded on a national and international basis for protecting our clients' assets through domestic and international tax planning, structuring business transactions and litigating tax disputes. We are well recognized for the innovative domestic and international tax planning techniques we have developed and apply through the creative use of corporations, partnerships, trusts, joint ventures and other vehicles.
Technology: (Contact: Donald B. Johnston (416) 865-3072 or David Takenaka (416) 865-3439). We focus on supporting emerging and established technology companies, businesses that have technology opportunities and organizations that use technology to make money. Our technology lawyers advise clients in the areas of information technology, biotech, commercial agreements, Internet strategy, privacy and information management, licensing and employee-related technology matters.
Transportation: (Contact: Joanne C. Coldwell (416) 865-4642 or Joel M. Rose, QC, (416) 865-3408). We provide transportation industry participants with a wide range of legal services. We are a recognized leader in the area of transportation regulation and routinely assist clients with licensing and suspension, safety and compliance, NAFTA and customs, bonding regulation and cabotage. Our regulatory expertise also extends to competition and foreign investment matters affecting transportation concerns.
Wealth Management and Succession Planning: (Contact: Jack Bernstein (416) 865-7766, Stuart Bollefer (416) 865-3079 or David Malach (416) 865-7702). We provide a full range of services to high net worth individuals, chartered accountants, financial planners and charitable organizations. Our tax and estate planning lawyers work closely to develop strategies which effectively build and preserve wealth while minimizing tax. Our planning strategies include traditional approaches such as estate freezes, income-splitting arrangements and innovative domestic trust structures, but may also include proprietary planning designed to meet specific needs.