Services

We act in all provinces and territories.

Our Services

Litigation

Power Law is highly skilled in all areas of litigation – including public, constitutional, commercial, and civil litigation – before all levels of court and administrative tribunals. Our approach is court tested and our team possesses hard-earned knowledge similar to lawyers with far more years of experience.

The team works tirelessly to help ensure victory in cases that cannot be resolved outside the courtroom. Our team has in-depth trial experience. The Power Law team also has significant appellate experience, including representation of public institutions and other clients on a wide-range of matters before provincial and territorial appeal courts, as well as the Supreme Court of Canada.

Strategic Advice and Government Relations

We are strong and highly capable advocates of your position, and guardians of your interests. We understand resolving disputes and reaching settlements requires diplomacy, patience, and creativity. Wherever possible, we encourage mediation and arbitration.

For those requiring a legal opinion (or second opinion) on the strength of their claim or position, we excel at providing them either in writing or verbally. Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C., is available to review legal opinions and provide focused strategic advice.

Power Law’s team has experience leveraging the law to achieve policy change. We are happy to advocate on your behalf vis-à-vis governments. We are accustomed to working with, and appearing before, committees of the House of Commons and the Senate, as well as legislative committees.

Ottawa and Gatineau Agency Work

With an office based in the heart of downtown Ottawa, Power Law is perfectly situated to serve as your agents before the Supreme Court of Canada, the Federal Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, and the Tax Court of Canada, as well as the vast number of Ottawa-based federal tribunals, boards, and commissions.

Power Law is also pleased to provide speedy and reliable liaison services with the Superior Court of Justice (Ottawa and Gatineau), and the Provincial Court of Justice (Ottawa and Gatineau).

Power Law has extensive experience in authenticating documents and regularly liaises with a number of Embassies and High Commissions, as well as Global Affairs Canada.

Our Practice Areas

Appeals and Judicial Reviews

The Power Law team – made up of many former law clerks – has significant experience representing clients on appeals and judicial reviews, in all areas of law. We benefit from the guidance of Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C., a former Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada and of the Court of Appeal of New Brunswick.

In addition to Mr. Bastarache’s unrivalled experience, the team has participated in more than 50 cases in the Supreme Court of Canada, and many more before: the Federal Court of Appeal and the Federal Court; Ontario’s Court of Appeal, Divisional Court and Superior Court; New Brunswick’s Court of Appeal and Court of Queen’s Bench; British Columbia’s Court of Appeal, Supreme Court, and Provincial Court; Alberta’s Court of Appeal and Court of Queen’s Bench; and the Courts of Appeal of Quebec, Nova Scotia, Manitoba, and the Yukon.

Power Law also has experience bringing appeals to administrative tribunals and providing advice to administrative decision-makers, both federally and provincially.

Aboriginal Law

Some Power Law team members focus on advising and representing Aboriginal clients – First Nations, Métis, and Inuit – on a wide variety of matters, including the duty to consult, Aboriginal rights and title advocacy and litigation, discrimination, and language and cultural rights. We have experience representing Aboriginal clients across the country, notably in British Columbia, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Quebec.

We have particular experience advocating for our Aboriginal clients in communications with governments and industry proponents, preparing historical narratives to support consultation and rights and title claims, and litigating discrimination claims.

We also represent Aboriginal clients, including Aboriginal governments, in civil disputes, including bringing and defending civil and commercial claims.

Power Law possesses extensive experience in minority language and cultural rights across Canada, including implementation of minority language and cultural policies.

Administrative and Regulatory Law

Power Law represents a number of clients – including public institutions such as school boards – on administrative matters, providing wide-ranging strategic and legal advice. We have experience providing advice on the scope of powers granted under legislation, including policy-making, disciplinary powers, and reporting obligations, as well as reviewing and developing governance policies for institutions.

Our team has often advised public institutions regarding statutes and regulations not just in the context of hearings, but also in their own decision-making. We frequently advise public bodies on compliance with human rights legislation and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and support the development and implementation of human rights policies.

We have argued administrative law principles, such as procedural fairness and substantive review, before all levels of court.

Civil and Commercial

Power Law’s general civil and commercial practice includes plaintiff and defence-side litigation at various levels of court in areas such as contract law, tort law, and professional liability. We are also experienced in, and encourage, mediation and arbitration.

Our team also has considerable experience drafting, reviewing, and interpreting contracts, including project and lease agreements.

We act for public institutions, local governments, companies and individuals.

Constitutional Law

Power Law has a wealth of experience in all matters of constitutional law, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Aboriginal law, the division of powers, and constitutional amendments.   

Power Law has prepared and presented arguments before the Supreme Court of Canada on constitutional matters, for instance, regarding the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and Senate reform.

More specifically, Power Law has substantial experience in complex, large-scale constitutional litigation at all levels of court. Notably, Power Law’s team members worked cohesively to prepare for and conduct a 239-day trial based on Charter grounds, involving many hundreds of millions of dollars.

Before continuing their constitutional law practice at Power Law, several of Power Law’s lawyers previously formed the public law and appellate advocacy practice group of a national law firm, led by former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C., now Counsel to the firm.

Education Law

Power Law is on the leading edge of developments in education law. We represent a number of institutional clients in this field, in all provinces and territories, providing strategic and legal advice on a wide variety of matters.

Our team’s unrivaled experience means we are well-positioned to meet the varied legal needs of school boards, school districts, and education associations, including specialised institutions such as minority language and religious educational institutions.

We have significant experience representing clients in the pre-school, “K-12”, and post-secondary education sectors, regularly advising institutions on legislation, regulations, policies, and directives, including with regards to policies, responsibilities of trustees and other administrators, labour and employment, operational and capital funding, and the provision of educational services by specialised schools and institutions. We regularly provide advice with respect to municipal, provincial, and federal laws and regulations, including obligations under freedom of information and privacy legislation, human rights legislation, and the Constitution.

We possess in-depth knowledge and experience related to the freedoms of expression and religion, and the constitutional right to Catholic education that exists in certain jurisdictions.

Power Law’s education law experience across Canada allows clients to benefit from a comparative perspective. Power Law proposes best practices learned from other jurisdictions.

Human Rights Law

The Power Law team has a depth of experience handling a wide variety of human rights matters in jurisdictions across the country, whether governed by the Canadian Human Rights Act or by provincial or territorial human rights legislation. We advise both institutional and individual clients on matters of equality, discrimination, and the duty to accommodate.

Our human rights work involves both bringing and defending human rights complaints, as well as advising on and preparing human rights policies.

Of note is our extensive experience in all matters related to human rights in the pre-school, “K-12”, and postsecondary education sectors, including regarding all questions related to the freedoms of expression and religion, and the constitutional right to Catholic education that exists in certain jurisdictions.

Further, Power Law is proud to have successfully represented a national public advocacy organisation before the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal in a major human rights complaint against the federal government regarding the child welfare system for First Nations children living on-reserve across Canada.

Labour and Employment Law

In collaboration with Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C. and Robert W. Grant, Q.C. – both of whom are Counsel to the firm and possess a wealth of experience in labour and employment matters – Power Law’s energetic team is well positioned to support employers in their relations with employees and unions.

Power Law advises institutional clients regarding matters related to hiring, firing, grievances, collective agreements, and employment standards.

Language Rights

Power Law has unparalleled experience in the field of language rights, including all rights and privileges related to English in Quebec, French throughout Canada (including in Quebec), and Aboriginal languages.

Power Law’s status in this field is reinforced by its Counsel, notably Michel Bastarache, C.C. Q.C., Canada’s leading language rights jurist.

Clients and institutions of all kinds – public, private, and not-for-profit – from across the country have come to rely on our breadth of knowledge, excellence, creativity, and foresight regarding all aspects related to the status, rights, privileges, and use of languages, in theory and in practice.

Power Law’s knowledge in this area is second to none.

Private and Public International Law

Collectively, Power Law’s team has worked on a wide variety of international legal questions, both private and public, including those involving conflict of laws, jurisdiction, human rights, state immunity, extradition, trade, and citizenship, at all levels of court. We regularly represent intervenors on questions of international law before courts of appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada.

Power Law’s international legal work is bolstered by the experience of Dr. François Larocque, Counsel to the firm, who has focused much of his academic writings and legal practice on matters of private and public international law.

Supreme Court of Canada

Whether you are a party or an intervenor, or whether you require assistance applying for leave to appeal or are already at the appeal stage, we offer services tailored to your needs, at extremely competitive prices.

You can count on the Power Law team, who has collectively worked on more than 50 cases before the Supreme Court of Canada. The majority of our team began their careers working at the Supreme Court of Canada as law clerks: Robert W. Grant (Justice McIntyre), François Larocque (Justice Arbour), Mark Power (Justice Bastarache), Caroline Magnan (Justice Bastarache), Jennifer Klinck (Justice Rothstein), David Taylor (Justice Karakatsanis), Marc-André Roy (Justice Cromwell), Ryan Beaton (Chief Justice McLachlin), and Marion Sandilands (Justice Karakatsanis).

The team also benefits from the unparalleled experience of former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C., Counsel to the firm.

Finally, you can also rely on the knowledge and capabilities of Caroline Etter, who has over 15 years of experience on over one hundred matters in Supreme Court of Canada agency work.

We will be happy to act as your agent at the Supreme Court of Canada (required by the Rules of the Supreme Court of Canada) and handle the administrative and procedural aspects of your case, including the preparation, filing, and service of all required materials. Our team will also gladly advise you on the arguments most likely to succeed, and draft or edit your documents, affidavits, and facta. Here again, Michel Bastarache, C.C., Q.C., Counsel to the firm, provides invaluable wisdom — he can even help you prepare for the hearing by presiding over a simulation of the oral hearing.