Ontario’s top intellectual property law firms in 2021

Lexpert presents Ontario’s leading IP law firms based on our latest peer survey
Ontario’s top intellectual property law firms in 2021

Lexpert presents Ontario’s leading intellectual property law firms based on the results of our comprehensive annual peer survey. See the complete roster of the province’s most recommended IP lawyers and law firms in our practice area rankings list.

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) defines intellectual property as one’s legal rights resulting from intellectual activity in the industrial, scientific, literary and artistic fields. Intellectual property law deals with the rules for securing and enforcing these legal rights.

In our survey, intellectual property law involves the provision of advice and representation in all matters relating to origination, exploitation and protection of inventions, patents, trademarks, copyright, moral rights, industrial designs, brand names, trade secrets and data.

Most frequently recommended intellectual property law firms

Gowling WLG
Year established: 1887
Number of lawyers: 80
Number of ranked lawyers: 28
Partners: Susan H. Abramovitch, Stuart C. Ash, René Bissonnette, Will Boyer, James H. Buchan, Marion Bailey-Canham, Shelagh Carnegie, Stéphane E. Caron, Michel A. Chartrand, Peter W. Choe, Daniel Cole, Monique M. Couture, Anthony G. Creber, Erin Creber, Michael Crichton, Stephen Cross, Nancy X. Deng, Keith Desjardins, Ronald Edward Dimock, Tania D’Souza-Culora, Michelle Easton, Jodi E. English, Shahrzad Esmaili, Matthew Estabrooks, Brian R. Fraser, Douglas G.H. Fyfe, Kelly Gill, Lori K. Hall, Neil W. Henderson, Jennifer Jannuska, Scott Jolliffe, Selena Kim, Kent Ledwell, James E. Longwell, Frédéric Lussier, Eric Macramalla, Laurent Massam, Lorraine Mastersmith, Charlotte McDonald, Sumiko Mori, Jennifer L. Morton, Frank Mulock, Omar A. Nassif, Trevor Newton, John Norman, Kevin O’Neill, Michael O’Neill, Christopher J. Pibus, Stephen A. Pike, Brenda L. Pritchard, Guy Régimbald, Marc Richard, Natalie S. Rizkalla-Kamel, Susannah C. Rolston, Matthew M. Roy, Kevin Sartorio, Martha J. Savoy, Hans Schroeder, Mark J. Sprigings, Ryan Steeves, Grant W.C. Tisdall, Constance Too, Christopher C. Van Barr, D. Lynne Watt, Jennifer L. Wilkie, Jay Zakaïb

Gowling WLG is an international full-service business law firm that boasts a network of more than 1,400 legal professionals in 19 cities worldwide. The firm serves clients in key sectors, including energy, financial services, life sciences, natural resources, infrastructure, real estate and technology. It has logged more than 9,400 pro bono hours and has been repeatedly recognized as a top employer committed to diversity, inclusion and innovation. Gowling has one of the largest and most highly regarded intellectual property practices in Canada. Backed by more than 125 years of expertise in in patents, trademarks, brands and designs, copyright, advertising and IP litigation, the firm handles a broad range of cases from multimillion-dollar disputes to cost-capped litigation in the IP courts. Many of the firm’s lawyers are specialists in science, engineering and technology. This combination of legal talent and in-depth industry knowledge enables Gowling to better understand its clients’ businesses and help them realize the full value of their IP.

Read more about Gowling WLG in key to besting improved-biosimilars

Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP
Year established: 2021 (Canada)
Number of lawyers: 35
Number of ranked lawyers: 4
Partners: Jung-Kay Chiu, Daniel Daniele, Mark Davis, Anthony de Fazekas, Lorelei Graham, Amy Grenon, David Ng, Jordana Sanft, Kristin Wall, Allyson Whyte Nowak, Anna Wilkinson

Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP is an international full-service business law firm with more than 3,700 lawyers and legal staff based in North and Latin America, Europe, Asia, Australia, Middle East and Africa. It has offices in more than 50 cities worldwide, including Toronto, London, Houston, New York, Mexico City, Hong Kong, Sydney and Johannesburg. The firm serves the world’s largest corporations and financial institutions. It boasts extensive experience in key industries, including finance, energy, infrastructure, mining, transportation, technology, life sciences and healthcare. The firm’s global intellectual property team comprises more than 250 lawyers, patent attorneys and trademark agents across five continents and boasts extensive experience providing comprehensive, multidisciplinary IP law services. The team holds expertise across our key industries, including financial institutions, energy, infrastructure and mining, transportation, technology, life sciences and healthcare. Many of the firm’s IP lawyers and patent and trademark agents have advanced scientific degrees to complement their practical experience, combining deep industry and technical knowledge with broad legal understanding.

Read more about Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP in cybersecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic

Smart & Biggar
Year established: 1890
Number of lawyers: 50
Number of ranked lawyers: 16
Partners: Mark Biernacki, Allan Brett, Daniel Davies, Mark Evans, Sheldon Hamilton, Graham Hood, Yoon Kang, Daphne Lainson, Philip Lapin, Jeff Leuschner, Lei Liu, Thuy Nguyen, James Jun Pan, Nancy Pei, Patrick Roszell, David Schwartz, Elliott Simcoe, Oliver Stone, Kohji Suzuki, Alice Tseng, Jeremy Want, Urszula Wojtyra, Matthew Zischka

Smart & Biggar is one of Canada’s leading intellectual property law firms and the largest specializing in the practice. It boasts a more than 400-strong pool of lawyers and patent and trademark agents. The firm has offices in Toronto, Ottawa, Montréal, Calgary and Vancouver. Smart & Biggar’s decades of experience in intellectual property, combined with deep knowledge and expertise across a wide range of technologies and industries, allows it to provide clients with clarity on opportunities and solutions to take advantage and maximize IP. It has filed more patent and trademark applications than any firm in Canada and has a strong track record of victories in IP litigation.

Read more about Smart & Biggar in boosting IP tech during the pandemic

Consistently recommended intellectual property law firms

Bennett Jones LLP
Year established: 1989 (Toronto)
Number of lawyers: 7
Number of ranked lawyers: 1
Partners: Duncan C. Card, Jeilah Y. Chan, Melissa M. Dimilta, Dominique T. Hussey

Bennett Jones LLP is one of Canada’s leading full-service business law firms. It boasts a manpower pool of more than 400 lawyers and business advisors in its offices in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, New York in the US and Beijing in China. Bennett Jones specializes in complex cross-border and international transactions and litigation. The firm’s IP litigation team is regularly retained to assist a diverse client base with disputes arising from the misuse or misappropriation of intellectual property across a broad spectrum of the arts and sciences. Its lawyers act as counsel in matters involving confidential information, trade secrets, patents, trademarks, passing off, copyrights and registered designs. They also litigate matters which deal with anti-piracy issues, personality rights, defamation and commercial disputes which involve, at their core, the ownership and exploitation of IP.

Read more about Bennett Jones LLP in when a purchaser reneges on a deal

Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG)
Year established: 1823
Number of lawyers: 30+
Number of ranked lawyers: 5
Partners: Davit Akman, Curtis Behmann, Eric Boehm, Graeme Boocock, Brandon Evenson, Mark Fecenko, Jeff Gordon, Adrian J. Howard, Kathleen Lemieux, Jamie Mills, Beverley Moore, Jason Mueller-Neuhaus, Chantal Saunders, Gail Silver, Andrew Sojonky, Mark F. Vickers, Justine Wiebe

Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG) is a bilingual full-service business law firm and one of country’s largest in the field. It excels under both the common and civil law systems in Canada. BLG boasts more than 700 lawyers, intellectual property agents and legal professionals worldwide. It has headquarters in Montréal, Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary and Vancouver. The firm serves businesses and other institutions in a range legal matters, including mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, major disputes, financing, and trademark and patent registration. It is also the first law firm in North America to implement client service standards. BLG’s IP group is responsible for more than 38,000 patent applications and patents, 40,000 trademark applications and registrations and 4,000 industrial design applications and registrations.

Read more about Borden Ladner Gervais LLP in trends to watch in business and law

Deeth Williams Wall LLP
Year established: 1994
Number of lawyers: 19
Number of ranked lawyers: 4
Partners: Richard Austin, Marijo Coates, Douglas N. Deeth, Michael Erdle, Thomas E. Feather, Hashim Ghazi, Gordon S. Jepson, Lauren Lodenquai, Vanessa Komarnicki, Hung Nguyen, Gervas W. Wall

Deeth Williams Wall LLP is a Toronto-based law firm dedicated to helping clients develop, protect and commercialize all types of intellectual property and technology. The firm’s partners specialize in all aspects of IP and technology law, with particular expertise in information technology, privacy and health care. DWW’s clients include Canadian and international leaders in the IT, pharmaceutical, biotechnology, health care, financial services, oil and gas, franchising, consumer products and food and beverage industries. Its lawyers combine legal expertise with an in-depth knowledge of the client’s business. The firm’s goal is to ensure that the legal rights of its clients are protected, while adding value to their businesses.

Read more about Deeth Williams Wall LLP in boosting IP tech during the pandemic

Goodmans LLP
Year established: 1917
Number of lawyers: 24
Number of ranked lawyers: 5
Partners: John Alton, Amalia Berg, Andrew Brodkin, Daniel Cappe, Dino Clarizio, Richard Corley, Nando De Luca, Ben Hackett, Michael Koch, David Lederman, Monique McAlister, Richard Naiberg, Tara Parker, Julie Rosenthal, Peter Ruby, Jordan D. Scopa, David Scrimger, Jaclyn Seidman, Sandon Shogilev, Jerry Topolski, David Zitzerman

Toronto-based Goodmans LLP is recognized as one of Canada’s most innovative law firms, providing expert legal services in all aspects of business law. The firm’s business-related specialties include capital markets, mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, technology, real estate investment trust, tax and litigation. Goodmans caters to a wide range of Canadian and international businesses, from startups to multinational corporations. The firm’s intellectual property group consists of professionals from a range of specialties that deliver top-notch IP services to clients in the acquisition, commercialization, enforcement and defence of intellectual property. 

Read more about Goodmans LLP in restructuring in a challenging economy

McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Year established: 1855
Number of lawyers: 18
Number of ranked lawyers: 3
Partners: Daniel G.C. Glover, Fiona Legere, Alfred A. Macchione, Steven Mason, Lisa Melanson, Sanjaya Mendis, David Tait, Steven Tanner

McCarthy Tétrault LLP is one of Canada’s leading full-service law firms, offering expert legal services to clients in Canada and around the world. The firm delivers integrated business, litigation, tax, real property and labour and employment offerings through its offices in Canada’s major commercial centres, New York in the US and in London, UK. The firm has a fully integrated national intellectual property team that offers clients options for protecting, managing and growing their foundational IP. Many of the firm’s IP lawyers hold advanced degrees in engineering, computer science, life sciences, chemistry and other fields. These lawyers are also proficient in the filing, prosecution and enforcement of all forms of IP rights, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and industrial designs, in Canada and internationally.

Read more about McCarthy Tétrault LLP in changes in Canada’s sales and income taxes

Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP
Year established: 1862
Number of lawyers: 25
Number of ranked lawyers: 7
Partners: May Cheng, John Cotter, Vincent M. de Grandpré, Jennifer Dolman, Barry Fong, Wendy Gross, Nathaniel Lipkus, Faylene Lunn, Dominic Mochrie, Kelly Moffatt, W. Lee Webster, Donna White, J. Bradley White

Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP one of Canada’s largest full-service firms with offices in Toronto, Ottawa, Montréal, Calgary, Vancouver and New York in the US. It boasts a stable of more than 400 lawyers providing expert legal services to Canadian and international clients. The firm is recognized for its extensive expertise in business law and is consistently ranked as among Canada’s top law firms. It is well-versed in a wide range of industries, including agribusiness, clean tech, energy, fintech, food products, gaming, health, hospitality and leisure, infrastructure, life sciences, mining, real estate investment trusts, REIT, retail and venture capital. Osler’s intellectual property team is recognized for its expertise in IP litigation, patent and trademark prosecution, portfolio advising and management and experience in helping clients realize the value of IP portfolios in mergers, reorganizations and other business transactions. The team boasts a winning trial record representing some of the world’s largest generic pharmaceutical, technology, biotech, life science, electronics, consumer products, entertainment, sports, food services and franchise companies in resolving their ongoing patent, copyright and trademark disputes in Canada.

Read more about Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in digital revolution in the health sciences

Torys LLP
Year established: 1941
Number of lawyers: 27
Number of ranked lawyers: 5
Partners: Andrew Bernstein, Yael Bienenstock, Sheila R. Block, Edward T. Fan, Patricia D.S. Jackson, Eileen M. McMahon, Ebad Rahman, Teresa A. Reguly, Andrew M. Shaughnessy, W. Grant Worden

Torys LLP is an international business law firm with offices in Toronto, Montréal, Halifax, Calgary and New York. It advises clients on a wide range of transactions, including banking and debt finance, board advisory and governance, capital markets, competition and foreign investment, consumer protection, corporate restructuring, intellectual property, litigation and dispute resolution, mergers and acquisitions, private equity and tax. The firm’s intellectual property group consists of more than 30 lawyers, patent and trademark agents and technical consultants. Many are internationally recognized leaders in their fields and most have advanced scientific or engineering degrees in various disciplines. The team is widely recognized for its broad technical expertise, legal experience and industry savvy in advising on the creation, selection, acquisition, registration, prosecution, management, exploitation, enforcement and protection of our clients’ IP rights, and in responding effectively to the IP rights and claims of others.

Read more about Torys LLP in how companies are using ESG strategies to boost their social and material value