Leading corporate mid-market lawyers in Toronto

Lexpert’s comprehensive annual peer survey brings to the fore the leading corporate mid-market lawyers in Toronto. Check out our practice area rankings list for the full roster of Ontario’s most recommended lawyers and law firms in the practice.

Our survey defines corporate mid-market as an area of transactional work involving private and public businesses with a revenue range between $50 million and $200 million. Law practitioners focusing on this area are primarily called upon to develop transaction strategy and to advise on the law as it relates to corporate, securities, finance, tax, competition, labour, employee benefits, real property, regulatory, environmental, intellectual property and litigation.

Most frequently recommended corporate mid-market lawyers

Aaron Atkinson

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2001

Aaron Atkinson is a partner at full-service business law firm Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. He specializes in public and private mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and securities and corporate governance. Atkinson advises several Canadian and international businesses in a wide range of industries, including mining, life sciences and financial services. He has also advised clients in various high-profile domestic and cross-border cases, including unsolicited takeover bids and proxy contests, financing transactions, negotiated acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships. Atkinson is well-versed in commercial governance, which is why he is called to advise on transactional matters, internal investigations and complex governance. He is recognized as one of Canada’s best corporate mid-market lawyers.

Read more about Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP on infrastructure investment during pandemic

Joel E. Binder

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1991

Joel E. Binder is a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s corporate finance, securities, and mergers and acquisitions groups. He boasts extensive experience in these practice areas, along with private equity, where he often advises clients. Binder frequently represents public issuers, boards of directors and investment dealers in transactions involving public offerings, private placements, takeover bids, business combinations and governance and securities compliance matters. He is a considered among the top corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada. Binder regularly speaks at conferences on securities law and has authored articles on a variety of securities law topics. His specializes business law.

Read more about Stikeman Elliott LLP on private equity investment

Frank S. Callaghan

Law firm: Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG)

Year called to the Bar: 1982

Frank S. Callaghan is the national group head of the corporate and capital markets practices and a member of the national management committee at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP. He specializes in corporate and commercial law, with a focus on corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, commercial transactions, and public and private company advice. Callaghan serves as counsel to domestic and foreign private and public companies and their shareholders. He advises on all aspects of corporate, securities and commercial laws, including corporate governance matters, directors’ obligations and shareholders’ rights. Callaghan also acts for vendors, purchasers and other stakeholders in connection to divestitures and acquisitions. He is recognized as one of Canada’s leading corporate mid-market lawyers.

Read more about Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG) on open banking in Canada

Curtis Cusinato

Law firm: Bennett Jones LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1993 (ON); 1991 (Michigan)

Curtis Cusinato is a senior partner at full-service business law firm Bennett Jones LLP. He devotes his practice to corporate and securities law, focusing on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, private equity and capital market transactions. Cusinato has advised boards of directors on various corporate governance matters in various industries, including steel, manufacturing, agribusiness, technology, food service, hospitality, gaming, waste management, financial services and life sciences. His clients include US and Canadian public companies, North American industry leading private companies, Canadian chartered banks, investment and merchant banks, private equity groups, hedge funds and sovereign wealth funds. Cusinato sits on the board of several entities and frequently acts as a speaker on various corporate topics. He is considered among the best corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada.

Read more about Bennett Jones LLP on infrastructure developments amid pandemic

Jeremy D. Fraiberg

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2000

Jeremy D. Fraiberg is a partner at full-service business law firm Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. He also co-chairs the firm’s mergers and acquisitions group. Fraiberg has acted for several public and private companies, private equity firms and investment banks on a range of acquisitions, securities offerings, and other corporate transactions. He has also taught at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law on contested mergers and proxy contests. Fraiberg has spoken and written about a range of legal issues. He is recognized as one of the top corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada.

Read more about Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP on financing tech growth

Samantha G. Horn

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1993

Samantha G. Horn serves as partner in Stikeman Elliott LLP’s mergers and acquisitions and private equity groups. She devotes her practice to these areas, along with venture capital financing, which includes investments, buy-outs and fund formation. Horn is also a member of the firm’s management committee in the Toronto office. She is recognized for her efforts in the promotion of the advancement of women in law. Horn is also a founding and executive member of the Canadian Women in private equity committee of the Canadian Venture Capital & Private Equity Association. She is considered among the country’s leading corporate mid-market lawyers.

Read more about Stikeman Elliott LLP on litigation trends in Canada

Neill I. May

Law firm: Goodmans LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1992

Neill I. May is a partner at full-service at Goodmans LLP. He is also the co-chair of corporate securities group and a member of the executive committee at the Toronto-based full-service business law firm. May boasts extensive experience in corporate and securities law, with a focus on mergers and acquisitions, governance and proxy matters, domestic and cross-border public and private financings, private equity and business restructurings. May is also actively involved in mining and Asian market practice areas. He is considered among the best corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada.

Read more about Goodmans LLP on shareholder activism in Canada

Vincent A. Mercier

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1990

Vincent A. Mercier is a partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. He specializes in mergers and acquisitions, where has acted for many of Canada’s most important transactions. Mercier represents acquirers, targets, controlling shareholders and committees of independent directors in public company acquisitions, both negotiated and hostile. He also represents strategic and private equity buyers in private M&A transactions and has extensive experience in cross-border transactions. Mercier is well-versed in various industries, including financial services, communications and media, technology, mining and energy. He advises public company boards on activism defence and other corporate governance issues. Mercier is recognized as among the country’s top corporate mid-market lawyers.

Read more about Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP on competition and foreign investment

Mario Nigro

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 2002

Mario Nigro is a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s mergers and acquisitions and private equity and venture capital groups. He devotes his practice to business law, including acquisitions, dispositions and reorganizations. Nigro boasts extensive experience working with private equity and venture capital firms on numerous acquisitions and dispositions. He has worked on several Canadian private equity fund transactions for leading private equity firms. Nigro also has significant experience working with owner operators who are looking at selling their businesses. He has worked with both entrepreneurs who are looking at selling a minority interest to grow their businesses and owners who are looking for a complete exit. Nigro has worked with owners in all industries and particularly manufacturing, services, technology, food and consumer product businesses. He has represented some of the leading food, retail and manufacturing businesses in Canada. Nigro works with a number of growing technology companies and has helped them with acquisitions, dispositions, financings and growth capital transactions. He is considered among the leading corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada.

Read more about Stikeman Elliott LLP on insolvencies and consolidation in agribusiness and cannabis sectors

W. Ian Palm

Law firm: Gowling WLG

Year called to the Bar: 1995

W. Ian Palm is a partner in Gowling WLG’s Toronto office. He devotes his practice to corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions and private equity. Palm regularly acts for Canadian and international clients in a variety of industries, including technology, energy and infrastructure. He represents private and public companies, major corporations, pension funds, and private equity and venture capital investors. Palm has acted for issuers, investors and underwriters, advising them in a range of corporate finance and M&A transactions. He speaks frequently at law schools, institutes and conferences on mergers and acquisitions, private equity and securities law. Palm is recognized as among the best corporate mid-market lawyers in the country.

Read more about Gowling WLG on new infrastructure delivery models

Brian M. Pukier

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1994

Brian M. Pukier is a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s mergers and acquisitions group. He also serves on the management committee at the firm’s Toronto office. Pukier specializes in cross-border M&A, private equity investments, corporate finance transactions, complex corporate reorganizations and public policy. He boasts significant experience in counselling senior management and the boards of directors of leading public and private corporations. Pukier is recognized as one of the top corporate mid-market lawyers in Canada. He is a frequent speaker and writer on M&A and securities regulatory topics.

Read more about Stikeman Elliott LLP on financing tech growth

Simon A. Romano

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP

Year called to the Bar: 1989

Simon A. Romano serves as partner in the capital markets and mergers and acquisitions groups at Stikeman Elliott LLP. He was also a former member of the management committee in the Toronto office. His practice focuses on securities, public and private mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance. Romano advises public companies, financial institutions, underwriters, investment funds, private equity funds, real estate investment trusts and income trusts, alternative trading systems and regulatory and self-regulatory organizations. He also acts on corporate governance and executive compensation matters. Romano was instrumental in the structure and launch of special purpose acquisition companies in Canada. He is considered among the country’s leading corporate mid-market lawyers.

Read more about Stikeman Elliott LLP on financing the mining industry