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Andrea Laing

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A selection of Andrea’s recent and current representative matters includes acting as counsel to:

  • KPMG LLP in Hrusa v. CannTrust Holdings Inc. et al., a proposed securities class action relating to the restatement of financial disclosures. Andrea was successful lead counsel in opposing the sanction of CannTrust’s CCAA Plan of Arrangement before the Commercial List on the basis of terms that were unfair to non-settling defendants (CannTrust Holdings Inc., et al. (Re), 2021 ONSC); the decision has been reported in the international insolvency press: “Cannabis producer secures CCAA plan”, Global Restructuring Review, D. Lawson, July 2021 (Hrusa is ongoing)

  • BDO LLP in its successful opposition to the certification in Whitehouse v. BDO, of a class action relating to an investment fund; the case represents an important development in the law as it relates to auditors’ duties of care to investors. The case was upheld on appeal to the Divisional Court. Both decisions are reported in the Ontario Reports (149 O.R. (3d) 85 & 156 O.R. (3d) 54. The Court of Appeal for Ontario has denied further leave to appeal. The plaintiffs’ appliction for leave to appeal was refused by the Supreme Court of Canada

  • Celestica Inc. in its successful appeal before the Supreme Court of Canada to uphold the limitation period for bringing a statutory secondary market securities class action (Trustees of the Millwright Regional Council of Ontario Pension Trust Fund v. Celestica Inc. et al.); the decision makes several important observations relating to the interplay between the Ontario Securities Act and the Class Proceedings Act (case dismissed)

  • The Bank of Nova Scotia in Mancinelli v. The Bank of Nova Scotia et al., a proposed class action relating to alleged collusion in connection with the setting of benchmarks in gold and silver markets (ongoing)

  • RBC Global Asset Management Inc. in Ross v. RBC Global Asset Management Inc., a class action relating to trailing commissions in the mutual fund industry (ongoing)

  • RBC Direct Investing Inc. in Frayce v. RBC Direct Investing Inc. and Michaud v. RBC Direct Investing Inc., class actions brought in Ontario and British Columbia, respectively, relating to trailing commissions in the mutual fund industry (ongoing)

  • Certain underwriters of Hexo Corp. in Morley v. Hexo Corp. et al., a securities class action relating to public disclosures in the cannabis industry (case dismissed against the underwriters)

  • Bank of America in Mancinelli v. Bank of America et al., a class action pursued in the Federal Court and the Ontario Superior Court of Justice relating to alleged collusion in the setting of benchmarks in the SSA Bond market (matter resolved on favorable terms)

  • Goldman Sachs Inc. in Staines v. Royal Bank of Canada, a proposed class action relating to alleged collusion in the setting of foreign exchange benchmarks (matter resolved on favorable terms)

  • Cronos Group. in its successful application to enforce an extended reporting period in its officers’ and directors’ liability insurance, Cronos Group v. Assicicurzioni Generali, 2021 ONSC 1704 (S.C.J). The decision was upheld by the Court of Appeal for Ontario, (2002 ONCA 525)

Awards & Recognition
  • The Best Lawyers in Canada (2016-2023: Class Action Litigation; 2020-2023: Corporate and Commercial Litigation; 2021-2023: Director and Officer Liability Practice; 2021-2023: Securities Law)

  • Chambers Canada: Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business - 2020-2022 (Litigation Securities)

  • Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada's Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys (2015-2022: Litigation Star – Class Actions; 2014-2022: Litigation Star – Commercial Litigation and Securities Litigation)

  • Benchmark’s Top 100 Women in Canadian Litigation – 2016-2022 (formerly, Top 25 and Top 50 Women in Canadian Litigation)

  • Thomson Reuters Stand-out Lawyer 2021 – Independently Rated Lawyers (As nominated by senior in-house counsel)

  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (2013-2022: Securities Litigation; 2019-2022: Corporate Commercial Litigation; 2013-2021: Class Actions; 2021: Directors & Officers’ Liability Litigation)

  • Lexpert Special Edition on Litigation, December 2019 (Leading Lawyer)
Professional Activities

Aside from her practice, Andrea frequently writes and speaks about class action developments and teaches in The Advocate’s Society/Osgoode Hall Law School intensive written advocacy course.

She is a member of the Canadian Bar Association, The Law Society of Ontario, The Metropolitan Lawyers Association and The Advocates' Society.

Andrea is also a member of The Ontario Bar Association's Class Action Bench and Bar Committee.

Publications
Professional Appearances
  • Moderator: New Developments in Civil Securities Litigation
    Blakes Business Class Webinar, Toronto, Ontario, September 15, 2022.
  • Speaker: The Art of Negotiation
    Women of Global Asset Management Webinar, January 25, 2022.
  • Co-speaker: Spotlight on ESG Investments Increases Litigation Risk
    Episode 17, The Blakes Continuity Podcast, October 19, 2021.
  • Panellist: Securities Class Action Update
    Association of Corporate Counsel, Ontario Chapter, Toronto, Ontario, October 18, 2018.
  • Panel Moderator: Successfully Managing Large Litigation
    Women in Litigation Canada Forum, Benchmark Litigation, Toronto, Ontario, October 18, 2017.
  • Instructor: The 21st Annual Written Advocacy Program
    Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Toronto, Ontario, October 13-14, 2017.
  • Moderator: Managing International Litigation
    Benchmark Women in Litigation Forum, New York, New York, September 13, 2018.
  • Panel Moderator and Speaker: Learnings and Country Western Musing from In-House Counsel
    Northwind’s 2018 Class Actions Invitational Forum Certification and Beyond, Cambridge, Ontario, June 11-13, 2018.
  • Panellist: Career Management: Pressing Issues at the Forefront
    Canadian Bar Association and Ontario Bar Association’s Women Lawyers’ Forum, Toronto, Ontario, May 3, 2018.
  • Speaker: Class Action Exposure, Managing Litigation Risk in Foreign Acquisitions: What Every Buyer Should Know
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, March 7, 2018.
  • Speaker: Managing Class Actions In-House, A Special Litigation Presentation: Class Actions Advocacy
    The Advocates’ Society, Toronto, Ontario, February 12, 2018.
  • Speaker: What’s Next in Securities Litigation: Emerging Technologies and Industries
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, February 8, 2018.
  • Chairperson: Navigating Securities Litigation Risk: A Review of Recent Developments
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, February 8, 2017.
  • Speaker: Post-Certification Strategies
    Ahead of the Class: Important Updates and Developments in Class Actions, Blakes Business Class Seminar, Toronto, Ontario, February 2, 2017.
  • Panellist: Delivering Better Litigation Results with Technology Legal Expertise and Enhanced Process Management
    Canadian Legal Innovation Forum Webinar, October 15, 2020.
  • Panellist: The Changing Risk Landscape and Mitigating Strategies for Alternative Investment Managers
    The Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) Webinar, Toronto, Ontario, September 16, 2020.
  • Speaker: Securities Litigation in 2020 and Beyond
    Blakes Business Class Webinar, Toronto, Ontario, June 18, 2020.
  • Speaker: Directors’ and Officers’ Exposure – A Practical Primer
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, Calgary Petroleum Club, Calgary, Alberta, February 7, 2020.
  • Speaker: Directors’ and Officers’ Exposure – A Practical Primer
    Blakes Business Class Seminar, Vancouver, British Columbia, February 6, 2020.
  • Interviewer: An Evening of Conversation with Hayley Wickenheiser
    Blakes 11th Annual Women’s Event, October 10, 2019.
Media Activities
  • Quoted: Assessing the fallout from Livent v. Deloitte
    Article by Barry Critchley, Financial Post, National Post, December 22, 2017.
  • Quoted: Slowdown in Securities
    Article by Julius Melnitzer, Report on Business Magazine, Special Edition, Canada’s Leading Litigation Lawyers, December 2018.
  • Quoted: Manipulating the Benchmmark
    Article by Elizabeth Raymer, Report on Business Magazine, Special Edition, Canada’s Leading Litigation Lawyers, December 2018.
  • Quoted: Canadian Court Restores Auditors' Protection Against Lawsuits
    Article by Peter Menyasz, Bloomberg BNA, September 12, 2018.
  • Quoted: Cannabis producer secures CCAA plan
    Article by Dominic Lawson, Global Restructuring Review, July 2021.
  • Featured: Leading in Litigation: Five women litigators talk about the challenges and rewards of being a woman litigator
    Article by Jennifer Brown, InHouse, Canadian Lawyer, January/February 2018.
  • Quoted: Cannabis Sector Litigation on Rise
    Article by Elizabeth Raymer, Lexpert Special Edition: Agribusiness and Cannabis, June 11, 2020.
Education
Admitted to the Ontario Bar - 2000
LL.B./B.C.L, McGill University - 1998
B.A. (Hon.), Victoria College, University of Toronto - 1993
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