McEwan Partners

British Columbia

900-980 Howe Street
Vancouver, BC, V6Z 0C8
British Columbia

Telephone:+1 604 283 7740
Fax:+1 778 300 9393

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McEwan Partners is a litigation boutique with a focus on complex corporate, commercial, and securities matters. Formed in the fall of 2017, the firm is headed by Ken McEwan Q.C., Bob Cooper Q.C., and Craig Dennis Q.C., three nationally- and internationally-recognized litigators. The firm’s lawyers share a dedication to exceptional advocacy, professionalism, rigourous legal analysis, and business-minded practicality.  Just six months after its inception McEwan Partners was the recipient of Benchmark Canada’s Litigation Boutique of the Year award for 2018, an honour repeated in 2019 and 2021. Benchmark has also recognized McEwan Partners as 2020 British Columbia Firm of the Year and 2021 BC Litigation Firm of the Year, and our partners are recognized as Litigation Stars or Future Litigation Stars.

Although our litigation expertise is broad, the firm’s primary focus is on business disputes. Most of our lawyers have experience in full-service corporate commercial firms, working closely with business lawyers on complex securities and corporate litigation and arbitration. We strive to understand our clients’ businesses and to deliver practical results tailored to their interests. 

Our firm’s lawyers include former judicial clerks and members of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Society of Barristers, International Academy of Trial Lawyers, and Litigation Counsel of America. Our lawyers have delivered successful results for clients in trials and appeals across Canada, including significant victories at the Supreme Court of Canada. Our recent highlights including rankings among the top 50 trial lawyers in Canada, a 2019 Lawyer of the Year, 2019 and 2020 Litigator of the Year, and 2022 Lawyer of the Year in Product Liability Law for Vancouver.

In addition to all our lawyers acting as counsel, our senior lawyers also arbitrate and mediate disputes. Three are members of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and Ken McEwan, Q.C. is an author of Commercial Arbitration in Canada and contributing author to A Practitioner’s Guide to Commercial Arbitration.

McEwan Partners’ Representative Experience:

Administrative and Public Law: Craig Dennis, Q.C. represented the Mining Associations of British Columbia and Canada as interveners in the judicial review in Federal Court of the Taseko New Prosperity mine environmental assessment in Taseko Mines Limited v. Canada(Environment). Craig’s expertise in this area is reflected in his selection as the Best Lawyers in Canada “Lawyer of the Year” in Administrative and Public Law in Vancouver for 2018.

Class Actions:
Our lawyers have expansive, precedent-setting experience in class actions across a wide range of disputes.  Lexpert and Best Lawyers recognize Ken McEwan Q.C. and Craig Dennis Q.C. as leaders in the area of class actions, and Best Lawyers named Ken McEwan Q.C. its class actions lawyer of the year in Vancouver for 2018. Ken does both plaintiff and defendant work.

In Este v. Esteghamat-Ardakani et al, Ken McEwan Q.C. and Emily Kirkpatrick successfully upheld a ruling obtained at trial that the plaintiff’s claim amounted to an abuse of process due to the taking of inconsistent positions. Both at trial and on appeal in Maxam Opportunities Fund Limited Partnership v. 729171 Alberta Inc., Bob Cooper, Q.C. led a successful defence on behalf of a company against whom it was alleged that there existed an obligation to borrow funds from the plaintiff.

Ken McEwan, Q.C. successfully led the defence of Fortress Paper Ltd. and Fortress Specialty Cellulose Inc. against a claim alleging knowing assistance in breach of trust, breach of confidence, and inducing breach of contract in Sateri (Shanghai) Management Ltd. v. Vinall.

Our lawyers have appeared as counsel in leading constitutional cases before the Supreme Court of Canada, including Law Society of British Columbia v. Mangat, and British Columbia v. Imperial Tobacco Canada Ltd.

Corporate and Shareholder:
In Arkansas Teachers Retirement System v. Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., Ken McEwan, Q.C. and Emily Kirkpatrick successfully defeated a shareholder application to bring a derivative action against current and former directors and officers of Lions Gate. 

In Wigen v. Wynndel Logging Co. Ltd.
, Ken McEwan, Q.C. successfully defeated a minority shareholder’s claim alleging oppression and seeking leave to bring a derivative action

Insolvency and Restructuring:
Owen James acted for the successful appellant in Century Services Inc. v. Canada (Attorney General), in which the Supreme Court of Canada for the first time directly interpreted key provisions of the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.

In Kriegman v. Dill, Ken McEwan, Q.C. and David McEwan were successful for the appellant Trustee in Bankruptcy in registering the foreign judgment of a Washington State Court against the respondent.  In its decision, the Court of Appeal commented on issues relating to the possible application of Part XIII of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act as an alternative mechanism to deal with cross-border insolvencies.

Product Liability:
Our lawyers, including Ken McEwan, Q.C. and Craig Dennis, Q.C., have acted in significant product liability cases on behalf of Daimler Chrysler, Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company (3M), Imperial Tobacco, and British American Tobacco, among others. Ken and Craig are consistently recognized in this area, with Ken having been recently described by Who’s Who Legal: Product Liability for 2018 as “incredibly skilled” and “a practitioner who consistently impresses clients with his encyclopaedic knowledge.”

Real Estate:
In Bison Properties Ltd. (Re), Ken McEwan, Q.C. and Craig Dennis, Q.C. lead successful defences for separate defendants of a claim by bond investors and real estate purchasers in the redevelopment of the iconic Oak Bay Beach Hotel. The case concerned the interpretation of the Real Estate Development Marketing Act, breach of trust, knowing receipt and tracing of trust property, and the priority scheme under the Land Title Act.

Ken McEwan, Q.C. succeeded in setting aside part of a court order to wind up a strata corporation in Owners, Strata Plan VR2122 et al v. Bradbury in the Court of Appeal’s first opportunity to consider recent amendments to the Strata Property Act allowing for wind-up of a strata corporation.

In Aurizon Mines Ltd. v. Northgate Minerals Corporation, KenMcEwan, Q.C. successful upheld a standstill agreement and enjoined a take-over bid both at summary trial and on appeal. Extraordinarily, the time from the commencement of the action, through trial and appeal, and to the appeal judgment was 28 days.


Updated March 2022