Brian is a highly experienced lawyer in the forestry sector with extensive expertise in timber agreements, regulatory advice and dispute proceedings.

- Chambers Canada, 2022 Guide

Brian is a lawyer and a registered professional forester in the Vancouver office. With more than 35 years’ experience serving British Columbia’s forestry sector, Brian works in both the Coastal and Interior forest industries advising on all facets of major forestry legislation and the replacement of key forest tenures.

Brian represents both large and small, publicly-traded and privately-held, Coast and Interior Forest Act tenure holders and their trade associations, forestry professionals and other organizations and individuals engaged in BC’s forest sector.

He assists his clients on all aspects of forestry law and policy, including:

  •  agreements related to timber harvesting, road use and construction, inventory, silviculture, rights of way, log and chip sales and purchases, and market logging;
  • assessing and providing advice and training on legislation affecting forest operations;
  • tenure transfers, consolidations and subdivisions;
  •  forest stewardship plans;
  • information sharing and management agreements between forest companies and First Nations;
  • assisting licence holders subject to enforcement proceedings under forestry legislation;
  • assignments and disputes related to “Bill 13” contracts;
  • assisting forest professionals subject to discipline by their professional association;
  • compensation claims for takings of harvesting rights and related improvements; and
  • obtaining exemptions from legislative requirements.

Prior to joining Lawson Lundell, Brian was an in-house legal counsel and Assistant Corporate Secretary for a major forest products company in BC. He also spent 15 years with the Council of Forest Industries, both in their Prince George and Vancouver locations, where he rose to the position of Senior Vice President, representing the BC forest industry on all forest policy matters of provincial significance. He has also practiced in a major law firm in the province. In 2003, Brian established Gilfillan Forestry Counsel in Vancouver.

As a third generation British Columbian working in forestry, Brian is proud to be based in North Vancouver, not far from the historic site of his grandfather's Horne Brothers' Shingle Mill on Burrard Inlet.

Recognitions & Rankings

Recognitions & Rankings

  • Chambers Canada 2024: recognised for Agribusiness: Forestry – Nationwide (Band 1)
  • Best Lawyers in Canada 2023-2024: recognised for Natural Resources Law
  • Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (2023-2024): recommended as a leading practitioner for Forestry Law
  • Association of BC Forest Professionals: Forester of the Year

News & Publications

News & Publications

  • “DLA Piper's British Columbia Forestry Law”, British Columbia, Thomson Reuters, Co-Editor
  • “Halsbury’s Laws of Canada – Forestry”, British Columbia, 1st Edition, Co-Author
  • BC Forestry Legislation Updates (since 2005)

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagements

  • Forestry Policy for University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Forestry, Term Lecturer
  • Presentations to the BC forest sector and forestry professionals regarding the Forest and Range Practices Act, the Government Actions Regulation, the Wildfire Act and Regulation, the Timber Harvesting Contract and Subcontract Regulation, Compliance & Enforcement issues, the Professional Governance Act and Professional Reliance

  • 'Recent Changes in BC Forestry Legislation,' Canadian Bar Association Natural Resources and Environment Sections, June 22, 2023, Speaker
Brian Gilfillan, RPF, Lawson Lundell Photo
t 604 631-9130
f 604-641-2805
* Law Corporation

Assistant Contact

Bar Admissions

  • British Columbia (1982)


University of British Columbia (LL.B., 1981)

University of British Columbia (B.S.F., 1978)

Practices & Industries

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