Canada’s best asset securitization lawyers

Here are Canada’s best asset securitization lawyers based on Lexpert’s extensive yearly peer review. Check out the complete list of the country’s most recommended lawyers and law firms in the field by visiting our practice area rankings.

The asset securitization practice includes acting for and advising asset originators, dealers, trustees, agents, liquidity lenders, credit enhancers, rating agencies and other participants in all matters relating to the structuring and implementation of asset securitization transactions. These transactions include:

  • Structuring and establishing special purpose vehicles to purchase or otherwise acquire and administer assets from one or more originators and issue asset-backed securities to finance such acquisitions
  • Structuring and documenting the acquisition of such assets and the issuance of such securities and ensuring compliance with all registration and other requirements
  • Documenting any liquidity facilities required to finance such special purpose vehicles and any external credit enhancement facilities required to support their acquisitions
  • Advising rating agencies on the efficacy of the structures employed
  • Providing opinions to various interested parties in connection with various aspects of the foregoing

Most frequently recommended asset securitization lawyers

Michael Burke

Law firm: Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1988
City: Toronto

Michael Burke is a partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. He devotes his practice to transactional matters in the securitization and asset-based lending and leasing areas and on the development and modernization of wholesale and retail lending and leasing programs for vehicle and equipment lessors, financiers and suppliers. In the area of securitization, Burke advises sellers, purchasers, liquidity lenders, credit enhancers, trustees and rating agencies in connection with domestic and cross-border securitization transactions. He also acts for Canadian finance and insurance companies in purchasing or selling lease portfolios and in establishing domestic and cross-border private securitization and bulk purchase programs. Burke regularly writes and speaks at conferences and seminars on securitizations, equipment and consumer leasing and secured transactions. He is a member of Canadian Finance & Leasing Association’s Board of Directors and its Legal Committee, member of the board of regents of the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers and the chair of the Personal Property Security Law Committee of the Ontario Bar Association. Burke has also been a member of the Legal Committee of the US Equipment Leasing and Finance Association, a first for a Canadian lawyer.

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Michael K. Feldman

Law firm: Torys LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1984 (ON); 2001 (New York)
City: Toronto

Michael K. Feldman serves as a partner at Torys LLP. He specializes in corporate and commercial law, with an emphasis on structured asset-backed financing, securitization, private mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, secured lending, aircraft financing and derivatives. Feldman has represented issuers and underwriters on various public and private securitizations and sellers and conduit sponsors on asset-backed commercial paper transactions. He also boasts extensive experience in the broad financial services industry involving numerous asset classes, including residential and commercial mortgages, auto loans and leases, personal lines of credit, credit cards and trade receivables.

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Simon R. Fitzpatrick

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1996
City: Toronto

Simon R. Fitzpatrick is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Toronto office. He specializes in securitization and is recognized as among Canada’s leading asset securitization lawyers. Fitzpatrick boasts extensive experience in acting for single and multi-seller securitization conduits, originators issuers, liquidity providers, credit enhancers, underwriters and investment banks. His experience involves several transactions in Canada, the UK and the US, covering a wide variety of asset classes, including residential and commercial mortgages, credit cards, instalment sales contracts, lease receivables, trade receivables, collateralized loan obligations, lines of credit and student loans. Fitzpatrick worked three years in London, UK, practising with a prominent US firm in the area of structured finance.

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Richard J. Fullerton

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1998
City: Toronto

Richard J. Fullerton is a partner at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. His practice covers many areas of banking, finance and securities law, with an emphasis on securitization and structured finance, corporate finance and financial institutions work. Fullerton is considered one of Canada’s best asset securitization lawyers and has acted for clients on a variety of securitization and structured finance transactions. He boasts extensive experience in acting for single and multi-seller securitization conduits, issuers, underwriters and investment banks covering a wide variety of asset classes, including covered bonds, residential mortgages, credit cards, automotive loan and lease receivables, equipment and automotive dealer floorplan receivables and trade receivables. Fullerton has also acted on many public and private initial and secondary offerings of corporate and financial institution debt, equity and innovative capital products.

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Marc J. MacMullin

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1990
City: Toronto

Marc J. MacMullin is the head of the national financial services group and a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Toronto office. His practice focuses on financial institutions and capital market transactions and structured finance transactions, including new issuer transactions, covered bond programs, cross-border transactions, marketplace lending and asset-backed programs. MacMullin has acted as lead counsel on numerous public structured finance transactions and global covered bond programs for issuers and underwriters. He boasts extensive experience in single-seller and multi-seller securitization transactions for various asset classes, including credit card receivables, equipment leases and loans, commercial and residential mortgage-backed securities and trade receivables.

Dean C. Masse

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1999
City: Toronto

Dean C. Masse is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Toronto office and co-head of the firm’s structured finance group. He specializes in securitization, structured finance, securities and fintech transactions, including single-seller, multi-seller and cross-border securitization transactions. Masse has significant experience acting as lead counsel for issuers, underwriters, sellers, purchasers, lenders, borrowers and trustees in various public and private securitization, structured finance, securities and fintech transactions. His securitization and structured finance transactions involves a variety of asset classes, including credit card receivables, residential and commercial mortgages, home equity lines of credit, auto loans, consumer finance receivables, retail instalment contracts and trade receivables. Masse also boasts extensive experience acting as lead counsel for issuers and underwriters in connection with prospectus offerings, private placements, medium-term notes programs, commercial paper programs, covered bonds programs and continuous disclosure matters. He has been invited as a speaker at numerous conferences on various securitization, structured finance and fintech topics.

Mark E. McElheran

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1997
City: Toronto

Mark E. McElheran is a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s financial products and services, capital markets and securities groups. His broad corporate finance practice includes public and private securitization, structured finance, banking, secured financing and derivative products transactions. McElheran represents a range of market participants, including domestic and foreign banks, investment dealers, issuers and investors. He has spoken on a range of topics at industry conferences pertaining to asset securitization, credit derivatives and collateralized debt obligations, secured lending and financing and personal property security laws.

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Peter E. Milligan

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1983
City: Toronto

Peter E. Milligan has been a partner at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP since 2002. He devotes his practice to securitization and structured finance with an emphasis on creditor’s rights. Milligan has provided advice to buyers, sellers, credit enhancers, liquidity lenders and rating agencies in connection with these transactions. Recent transaction types he has been involved in include automobile and equipment loans, leases and wholesale assets, credit card receivables, residential and commercial mortgages and trade receivables. Milligan has provided advice in connection with all categories of financing transactions. Throughout his career, he has practised banking and financial services law and is considered as one of the top asset securitization lawyers in Canada. He has also taught commercial law at Osgoode Hall Law School for several years.

Mary Jeanne F. Phelan

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2000 (QC); 2000 (New York)
City: Montréal

Mary Jeanne F. Phelan is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Montréal office. She is a banking and finance law expert, focusing on commercial lending, asset securitization, structured finance and derivatives. Phelan advises on cross-border loan syndications, factoring and securitization of receivables, derivatives, debt restructuring and secured transactions. In the area of structured finance and asset securitization matters, her experience includes acting for originators, purchasers, conduits and underwriters in transactions involving many classes of receivables. She also has extensive experience in covered bond transactions and commodity and inventory finance structures. Phelan is recognized as among Canada’s leading asset securitization lawyers. In the area of commercial lending, she has broad experience acting for lenders and borrowers in corporate and acquisition financings, asset-based lending, receivables finance, mining, wind farm, health facility and other project financings, equipment financing and leasing, Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act restructurings and debtor-in-possession financing.

Dirk E. Rueter

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1992
City: Toronto

Dirk E. Rueter is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Toronto office. His practice focuses on structured finance, including asset-backed financings, collateralized loan obligations, covered bond issuances and derivative transactions. He is considered one of the best asset securitization lawyers in Canada. Rueter’s securitization practice covers a broad range of asset classes, including auto and equipment loans and leases, residential and commercial mortgages, floorplan and trade receivables and esoteric assets. He has extensive experience in domestic and cross- border public and private securitization transactions. Rueter has participated in and spoken at several industry conferences in Canada and the US in the areas of securitization and structured finance.

Constantine Troulis

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1987
City: Montréal

Constantine Troulis is a partner at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. He specializes in banking and financial services and commercial real estate. Troulis has broad experience on a wide range of matters, including national and cross-border asset-based and syndicated lending transactions, asset securitizations, covered bond financings, equipment financings and leasing, debt restructurings, financing and real estate aspects of wind power projects, commercial real estate acquisitions, property development, real estate financings, and commercial real estate leasing. His practice also extends to advisory work on commercial and regulatory matters.

Consistently recommended asset securitization lawyers

Stephen R. Ashbourne

Law firm: Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1991
City: Toronto

Stephen R. Ashbourne is a partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. He devotes his practice to securities and commercial law, with a focus on structured finance and derivatives transactions. With more than 25 years in practice, Ashbourne has a deep understanding of related tax, insolvency and regulatory law topics. He has acted on many firsts relating to securitization, derivatives, structured products and electronic trading. He has extensive experience designing, “Canadianizing” and implementing financial products and strategies in both the domestic and cross-border contexts. Ashbourne has played leading roles on many significant transactions, including the restructuring of $35-billion of non-bank ABCP, the sale of $11-billion of credit card portfolios subject to existing securitizations and the acquisition of over $8-billion of equipment portfolios using securitizations. He also has significant recent experience in securitizing vehicles, aircraft and rail assets in the cross-border context. His derivatives practice focuses on over-the-counter (OTC) and retail derivatives-based transactions and strategies. Ashbourne regularly advises on emerging OTC derivatives rules and has played leading roles in connection with the development of novel offering structures and Canada’s securities laws for asset-backed securities and retail derivatives.

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Jo-Anna Brimmer

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2007
City: Toronto

Jo-Anna Brimmer is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s business law group in Toronto. She has a structured finance, financial services and securities practice with a focus on securitization, covered bonds and debt capital markets transactions. Brimmer is involved in public and private securitization transactions covering a variety of asset classes, including auto and equipment loans and leases, dealer floorplan loans, HVAC and water heater rental contracts, trade receivables, residential mortgages, lines of credit and credit cards. She has also been involved with the establishment of covered bond programmes for several Canadian financial institutions and related international offerings. Brimmer regularly acts for issuers and underwriters in connection with public securities offerings and private placements, including secured and unsecured bond offerings.

François M. Gilbert

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1994
City: Montréal

François Gilbert is a counsel at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s banking group in Montréal. He has 20 years of experience as a banking and finance lawyer, with expertise covering a broad range of sectors, including structured finance, project finance, syndicated lending, securitization, derivatives and debt capital markets. Gilbert boasts extensive experience in syndicated loans, inter-creditor and cross-border security issues, asset-based lending and acquisition finance. He has also been involved in several project financings in the mining, energy and infrastructure public-private partnership sectors. Gilbert has significant expertise relating to over-the-counter and exchange-traded interest rate, foreign exchange, equity, commodity, credit and fund-linked derivatives, structured products with embedded derivatives such as share, index and credit-linked notes, clearing and settlement systems, the regulation of derivatives, exchanges and clearing houses, repos, repackaging transactions, cash and synthetic structured credit transactions based on novel classes of debt. He also advises financial institutions and pension and investment funds in the context of structured transactions driven by tax or regulatory considerations.

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Jim Hong

Law firm: Torys LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2001
City: Toronto

Jim Hong is a partner at Torys LLP. He practises corporate, commercial and securities law, with a focus on public and private managed products, structured asset-backed financings, securitization and derivatives. Hong is considered among the best asset securitization lawyers in Canada. He has represented various underwriters and asset-backed securities issuers in large public offerings. Hong has also worked on structuring transactions involving the securitization of numerous asset classes, including commercial and residential mortgages, home equity line of credit loans, auto loans and leases, wholesale dealer loans, credit cards and trade receivables. Hong is an adjunct professor of law at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he teaches commercial law. He is also co-author of the Canada Chapter of The International Comparative Legal Guide to Securitisation, published by Global Legal Group, London.

Michael K. McConnell

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2000
City: Toronto

Michael K. McConnell is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Toronto office. He specializes in asset securitization, structured finance and securities law and is recognized as one of Canada’s top asset securitization lawyers. McConnell boasts significant experience in asset securitization, including several asset classes such as commercial and residential mortgages, home-equity lines of credit, credit cards, automobile and equipment loans, automobile operating leases and trade receivables. He has acted as counsel for issuers and underwriters on numerous significant securitizations, including several of the largest Canadian public securitizations completed to date, several US cross-border offerings and on several private commercial paper conduits. McConnell also has extensive experience in public and private structured finance, including covered bonds, credit-linked notes and investment funds, and has experience with swaps and derivatives in the context of such structured finance transactions. In addition, he has acted as counsel for issuers and underwriters with respect to public issuances of medium-term notes and other securities, and has significant experience in securities law, including prospectus offerings, private placements and continuous disclosure.

Kevin Wright

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1987
City: Vancouver

Kevin Wright is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s Vancouver office. His transactional practice focuses on project finance, particularly in the renewable power sector, equipment lease financing, asset-based lending, private equity debt financing and other corporate and commercial lending. His advisory practice focuses on development and implementation of standardized operating procedures and documentation, risk management policies and quality assurance programs for institutional clients and expansion into Canada of financial services companies. Wright’s recent representative transactions include auctions of renewable power projects, financings of a solar power project in Alberta and wind power project in British Columbia, acquisition and fleet financings of aircraft, ships and motor vehicles, private equity investments in a clothing manufacturer, computer software enterprise and rental car company, and various financings of forestry, steel manufacturing, shipbuilding and mining enterprises. His recent advisory mandates include risk management review of semi-trailer lease and rental documentation and streamlining of corporate group banking authorizations.