Former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Marshall Rothstein has joined Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP’s Vancouver office, moving over from Hunter Litigation Chambers.
Rothstein left the SCC in 2015 and later made the transition to Hunter Litigation, before deciding to leave to become a partner at Osler.
“They’ve asked me to join them and they’re interested in my assistance in litigation, tax and regulatory work and intellectual property, judicial reviews. Those are the areas that I’ve discussed with them and that they appeared to be interested in,” says Rothstein.
He says that while he liked the work he did at Hunter Litigation Chambers, last year, his largest source of work was from Osler, and he “enjoyed the kind of work” the firm was asking him to do.
Rothstein was born in Winnipeg, attended the University of Manitoba and practised in Winnipeg. His career began as a civil litigator in private practice and spanned a 23-year tenure on the bench, with the last nine years on Canada's highest court.
Throughout his legal and judicial career, Rothstein has authored more than 100 judgments and arbitral decisions on domestic and cross-border cases of commercial significance and complexity. Within Canada's business community, he is regarded as a judge and commercial arbitrator with expertise in dispute resolution, including M&A, tax, competition, intellectual property and issues in the transportation and energy sectors.
"Our clients, who often come to us facing business critical disputes, will now have access to Marshall's broad-ranging expertise and business judgment. By adding Marshall to our pre-eminent tax, competition, commercial and regulatory disputes practices, we can provide tremendous value to our clients and their business challenges,” said Dale Ponder, Osler's managing partner and chief executive, in a press statement.
Mark Longo, Osler's Vancouver office managing partner, said: "Having Marshall join our growing office is a terrific endorsement of our platform in the B.C. market. Marshall joins a deep bench of talent, including his colleague, former Court of Appeal justice Karen Sharlow, and our national tax and litigation partners who argue landmark cases that shape the law."
Rothstein will not be appearing in any trial courts as part of his new role.
“As a former Supreme Court judge, I will not appear in court, and my name won’t appear on documents that are filed,” he says. “My role is to assist primary litigators in the work that they’re doing. ”
He adds that being a lawyer “is quite different from being a judge,” and he says it’s fun to be able to work on behalf of a client.
“As a judge, you’re impartially deciding cases, and one party is successful and the other party isn’t. As a lawyer, you’re helping the party . . . in trying to make the strongest case they can within the bounds of the law and based on the facts that are applicable to the matter that you’re dealing with,” he says.