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Overview

We understand that pursuing litigation through the court system is often not the most desirable route for our clients. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes, mediation and arbitration in particular, often provide the flexibility, confidentiality, and timely resolution that traditional dispute routes cannot as easily accommodate and thus also help avoid reputational risks. Keeping our clients’ best interests in mind, we therefore routinely assess risks and recommend the most appropriate dispute resolution methods for a particular situation or set of objectives.

Our lawyers have significant experience and formal training in mediation and arbitration, whether the matter is domestic or international. We keep current on developments in ADR processes and approaches, and train our lawyers on effective settlement negotiation, including completing formal training through ADR Societies. In addition, several of our lawyers are accredited experienced neutrals in both mediations and arbitrations.

Mediation:

Our lawyers are routinely engaged in the mediation of both civil and administrative disputes. Mediation is now commonplace and increasingly "mandated" by courts, regulators, or by multi-stage dispute resolution provisions in contracts. Mediation helps the parties explore--and reach--settlement but does not provide a final, binding decision imposed by a third party. It is a very flexible tool which can help preserve ongoing business relationships, find creative solutions beyond traditional remedies, and resolve a discreet issue without the need to litigate or engage in another form of ADR regarding the whole, saving time and expense.

Arbitration:

Arbitration processes involve an arbitrator who makes a final, binding decision. Like mediations, arbitrations are private and, usually, confidential, preserving the privacy for all parties involved. Our arbitration practice includes both domestic and international arbitration matters in a number of industries, including dealing with the complexities of global enforcement. We are familiar, and trained with the many ADR rules and regimes through which arbitrations are often conducted.

Recognitions & Rankings

Recognitions & Rankings

  • Best Lawyers in Canada recognizes our lawyers for Alternative Dispute Resolution Law

Experience

Experience

Experience acting as a neutral arbitrator or mediator:

  • Served as the sole arbitrator in an arbitration under a First Nation Custom Election Bylaw involving a petition to remove a Chief and Counsellor
  • Served as hearing panel member for the Law Society of Alberta
  • Acted as a mediator in various pro-bono mediations for Alberta based charities and non-profits

Experience advising clients with respect to mediations and arbitrations:

  • Extensive experience advising clients with respect to mediations for the resolution of civil disputes or administrative disputes
  • Acting as mediation and arbitration counsel for professional services firm regarding confidential and highly sensitive disputes
  • Acting as arbitration counsel for a major energy company regarding contractual rights
  • Acting as arbitration counsel for a major energy company regarding environmental claims
  • Acting as arbitration counsel with respect to a commercial lease rate dispute
  • Successfully represented a major public utility in an referee process in regard to a public private design build partnership
  • Successfully represented an international mining client in a private arbitration concerning an option agreement related to an exploration property located in Africa
  • Represented an American corporation that purchased a culinary school in Vancouver in an arbitration that dealt with issues relating to the purchase agreement
  • Successfully represented a bio-energy producer in a private arbitration and obtained an award relating to the value of bio-fuel from a specific supplier
  • Successfully represented a major audit software corporation in an arbitration against an ex-principal, enforcing a non-competition covenant and awarding damages for breach thereof
  • Successfully defeated an application to stay a British Columbia Supreme Court proceeding in favour of arbitration under the Rules of the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (H & H Marine Engine Service Ltd. v. Volvo Penta of the Americas, Inc., 2009 BCSC 1389)
  • Successfully represented defendant (Daewoo Heavy Industries America Corporation) in resisting attempt by the Plaintiff to vacate an order staying litigation in favour of a contractual provision requiring arbitration. (Trainer Bros. Equipment Services Ltd. v. Daewoo Heavy Industries America Corporation, unreported, BCSC, November 9, 1999)
  • Acting for a prominent golf and country club in a complex arbitration of a renewal of its lease with an First Nations band
  • Successfully represented the purchaser of a private post-secondary school in a commercial arbitration to resolve disputes arising from the purchase
  • Successfully represented a major forest product company in a private arbitration brought under the Timber Harvesting Contract and Subcontract Regulation (British Columbia)
  • Successfully overturned on appeal certification of a major pension class proceeding involving the claim to a share of surplus in an ongoing pension plan and obtained a stay of that proceeding in favour of arbitration (Ruddell v. BC Rail Ltd. 2007 BCCA 269)
  • Successfully represented the claimant in a commercial arbitration in which we challenged the manufacturer’s purported termination of the client’s evergreen and exclusive distribution rights upon which the client’s business depended

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