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Laura Cundari

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Major Projects Litigation and Arbitration

  • Arbitration counsel to a major utility corporation in a C$350-million dispute involving delay and disruption claims in connection with the construction of significant energy infrastructure

  • Arbitration counsel in a LCIA arbitration involving the sale of mining assets in Mongolia

  • Arbitration counsel to an owner in respect of an ICC arbitration claim regarding pipeline construction

  • Appellate counsel for Suncor Energy Inc., Imperial Oil Limited, Husky Oil Operations Limited, Cenovus Energy Inc. and Canadian Natural Resources Limited at the Supreme Court of Canada with respect to constitutional matters in Attorney General of British Columbia v. Attorney General of Canada (B.C.) (recognized as Gold Winners for the Commercial Litigation Team of the Year at the 2021 Canadian Law Awards)

  • Arbitration counsel for a design-builder of municipal infrastructure in a C$25-million ICC arbitration

  • Arbitration counsel to Carillion Canada with respect to claims relating to the construction of a high-voltage transmission line in the context of its CCAA restructuring

  • Assisting clients to efficiently resolve urgent issues such as lien claims, project disruptions and bond claims

Complex Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

  • Trial counsel on the leading case in British Columbia on economic impacts and force majeure arising out of the 2008 financial crisis

  • Trial counsel in respect of a claim brought against a vendor corporation for a C$17-million brokerage fee arising from the sale of a business

  • Arbitration counsel for a luxury hotel group in ad hoc international arbitration involving disputes under a hotel management agreement

  • Class action counsel for an active pharmaceutical ingredient supplier in proposed opioids class action proceedings

  • Class action counsel defending claims brought against major retailers, insurers and financial industry participants, including dismissal at the certification stage

  • Arbitration counsel to residential owners of a luxury condominium in a BCICAC/VanIAC arbitration involving disputes regarding cost sharing

  • Arbitration counsel to a cannabis company in a dispute related to product supply

  • Advising on the viability of investor-state claims arising under a bilateral investment treaty

  • Litigation and arbitration counsel in a wide range of shareholder disputes

Arbitral/Mediation Appointments

  • Appointed chair of a three-member panel in a Vancouver International Arbitration Centre arbitration involving claims in respect of a consulting agreement

  • Appointed sole arbitrator in a Vancouver International Arbitration Centre arbitration involving claims in respect of a share purchase agreement including working capital adjustments and alleged breaches of representations and warranties

  • Appointed sole arbitrator in a Vancouver International Arbitration Centre arbitration involving website design and development services

  • Appointed sole arbitrator in a Vancouver International Arbitration Centre arbitration involving disputes in respect of a helicopter services agreement

  • Appointed mediator in respect of shareholder disputes

Awards & Recognition

Laura has been recognized as a leading lawyer in the following publications:

  • The Legal 500 Canada 2023 (Construction, Dispute Resolution: British Columbia)

  • Chambers Canada: Canadian Leading Lawyers for Business (2021–2023: Litigation: General Commercial – British Columbia; 2023: Nationwide – Canada Dispute Resolution: Arbitration) Chambers Canada 2023 notes: "Vancouver-based Laura Cundari has a growing reputation in BC for her representation of clients from the energy, pharmaceutical and infrastructure sectors. She has significant experience in litigating and arbitrating disputes before both federal and provincial courts. ‘Laura Cundari has been absolutely amazing to work with. She has been invaluable and has more than exceeded any of our expectations.’"

  • The Best Lawyers in Canada (2023: Alternative Dispute Resolution, International Arbitration; 2020–2023: Construction Law, Corporate and Commercial Litigation, Securities Law)

  • Benchmark's Top 100 Women in Canadian Litigation 2022

  • Who's Who Legal: Canada 2022 (Arbitration)

  • Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada's Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys – 2021–2022 (Litigation Star – Arbitration, Commercial Litigation)

  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory – 2021–2022 (Commercial Arbitration – Repeatedly Recommended)

  • Benchmark's 40 & Under List – Canada – 2018–2022

  • Business in Vancouver 2021 (Forty under 40 – Recognizes B.C.'s young business talent for demonstrated excellence in business, judgment, leadership and community contribution)

Laura is part of the legal team that has been recognized as "Arbitration Firm of the Year" by Benchmark Litigation for five years (2018–2022).

Professional Activities

Laura is a director of the Vancouver International Arbitration Centre and CanArbWeek. She is co-lead of the North American Group of the Silicon Valley Arbitration & Mediation Center, co-chair of CPR's Canada Advisory Board and a member of ICDR's Canada Advisory Committee.

Laura volunteers her time with several charitable organizations and is president and chair of the board of directors of Ballet BC. She sat on the board of directors of Touchstone Theatre Society for several years, including as president of the board.

Laura is an Arbitration Place NexGen arbitrator and a Vancouver International Arbitration Centre panellist. She is also listed on the Arbitrator and Mediators List of ReferToHer™, a series of lists of experienced female lawyers to whom other lawyers can confidently refer work.

Professional Appearances
  • Panellist: Serving up Courses: Rapid-Fire Debates on Key Dispute Resolution Issues
    CanArbWeek 2022, Montreal, Quebec, October 20, 2022.
  • Panellist: Arbitration case-law from sea to sea: quoi de neuf?
    CanArbWeek 2022, Montreal, Quebec, October 20, 2022.
  • Panellist: Arbitration Tactics
    ARBinBRIEF, Season 2, Episode 1, October 12, 2022.
  • Panel Chair: Dispute Resolution in the age of COVID-19 and Beyond
    WCCAS Annual Arbitration Conference, Calgary, Alberta, May 3, 2022.
  • Speaker: The New Normal in Construction Contracts and Dispute Resolution
    Pacific Business & Law Institute, Vancouver, British Columbia, April 21, 2022.
  • Panellist: Arbitration: Everything an In-House Lawyer Needs to Know
    CCCA Seminar, Vancouver, British Columbia, April 7, 2022.
  • Panellist: Selecting the Appropriate Neutral for Your Disputes
    CPR Dispute Resolution Webinar Series on Arbitration Advocacy in the Virtual & Hybrid World, April 5, 2022.
  • Panellist: Turning Toward the Sun and Wind: Exploring Issues in Renewable Energy Arbitration
    6th Annual USC-JAMS Arbitration Symposium - Adapting to a World Forever Changed, Los Angeles, California, March 17, 2022.
  • Panellist: Virtual Hearings & Expedited Procedures
    Vancouver International Arbitration Centre Webinar, February 2, 2022.
  • Guest Instructor: Jurisdiction
    Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society Gold Standard Arbitration Course, January 19, 2022.
  • Speaker: Protecting Your Investment: Damages in International Disputes
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, December 15, 2021.
  • Speaker: Annual Law and Ethics Webinar for In-House Counsel
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, November 24, 2021.
  • Panellist: Trends and Developments in Infrastructure Arbitration
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, October 6, 2021.
  • Panellist: Center Updates and Awards Presentation
    CanArbWeek, VanIAC Event (Virtual), September 22, 2021.
  • Panellist: Changes in Domestic and International Arbitration Laws
    Resilience in Recovery: 2021 ADR Institute of BC Virtual Symposium, June 7, 2021.
  • Panellist: Charting the Future in International Arbitration
    ILA-Canada Biennial Conference, May 20, 2021.
  • Co-chair: A Virtual Mini-Course (in Two Parts): Arbitration: From Nose to Tail
    Vancouver International Arbitration Centre, May 6 and 13, 2021.
  • Speaker: Trends and Developments in Arbitration
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, April 7, 2021.
  • Moderator: Tertulia Sessions
    ICDR America's Conference 2020, International Centre for Dispute Resolution, December 1, 2020.
  • Moderator: Blakes Law and Ethics Webinar for In-House Counsel
    Blakes Webinar, November 24, 2020.
  • Instructor: Mastering Virtual Discoveries
    The Advocates’ Society, November 17, 2020.
  • Moderator: Successfully Managing Risk in Complex Litigation
    Benchmark Women in Law Forum, October 7, 2020.
  • Panellist: Online Roundtable with Barry Penner, Managing Director, Vancouver International Arbitration Centre
    New B.C. Arbitration Act, Business Council of British Columbia, October 6, 2020.
  • Speaker: The New B.C. Arbitration Act
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, September 22, 2020.
  • Panel Chair: New Act, New Rules, New World for BC Arbitrations
    WCCAS Arbitration Panel, CanArbWeek, September 21, 2020.
  • Speaker: The New Arbitration Act; Domestic and International
    Webinar presented by ADR Institute of BC, September 11, 2020.
  • Panellist: New Act, VANIAC, New Rules
    Webinar presented by Blakes, the Vancouver International Arbitration Centre, and CIArb Canada, August 11, 2020.
  • Panellist: Dispute Resolution in a Virtual World
    Conference on Construction in the Wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Pacific Business & Law Institute, Vancouver, British Columbia, July 28, 2020.
  • Panellist: Virtual Reality: Experiences of Remote Arbitration
    Blakes Business Class Webinar, June 25, 2020.
  • Chair: Prompt Payment and Adjudication Symposium
    Presented by CIQS and RICS, Calgary, Alberta, February 27, 2020.
Media Activities
  • Quoted: Arbitration seen as a useful tool in settling renewable energy project disputes: Blakes lawyer
    Article by Zena Olijnyk, Canadian Lawyer, June 9, 2022.

Admitted to the British Columbia Bar – 2008
JD, University of Victoria – 2007
BA, (Class 1 Distinction), University of British Columbia – 2004

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