James P. Thomson

Jamie is a founding partner of the firm with over 30 years experience in practice as a litigator and provider of legal advice in diverse sectors.

His practice involves the providing of advice to, and defence of, accountants, architects, engineers, lawyers, physicians, hospitals, oil companies, ship owners and freight forwarders. He has represented these clients in provincial and federal courts of first instance and appeal, in arbitration proceedings and before various boards and tribunals. He provides advice to insurers on coverage and policy interpretation and has acted in commercial transactions on behalf of oil companies, ship owners and insurers.

Jamie graduated from Queen’s University in 1974 and from the law school of the Université de Montréal in 1977. He is a member of the Ontario and Quebec bars and is fluent in French. He holds an Advanced Certificate in Alternative Dispute Resolution from the University of Windsor. He has been listed as a prominent practitioner in Best Lawyers in Canada and LawDay.

  • Successful defence of an action by the purchaser of the shares of a company against the auditors of the company. The Court accepted the defence argument that the purchaser’s failure to conduct an adequate due diligence review was the proximate cause of the loss
  • Successful resolution, after a multi-day mediation, of a claim against the insurers of  a major financial institution, and others, arising from a $100 million fraud
  • Defence of an accounting firm in a class action by investors allegedly defrauded by the principal of the accountant’s client
  • Obtaining the dismissal of a claim against an accounting firm on the basis that claim was frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of process
  • Co-counsel at the Supreme Court of Canada on one of the leading cases in the Quebec law of trusts
  • Representing a major oil company in connection with an oil spill arising from the grounding of a ship on Anticosti Island
  • Representing a major oil company in connection with an oil spill arising from the over-filling of a customer’s tank, leading to damage to the home and to adjoining properties
  • Representing a major oil company in connection with a failed environmental remediation
  • Representing claimants in a wrongful death claim arising from a collision between a canoe and a jetski
  • Representing a yacht owner in a dispute with a yacht builder
  • Obtaining the stay of an action relating to the destruction of a cargo of lumber, on grounds of forum non conveniens
  • Acting for a native band in the purchase of a ferry
  • Acting for a ship owner in the purchase of a Great Lakes freighter
  • Negotiating and drafting charter parties for tugs and barges
  • Enforcing a freight forwarder’s lien in CCAA proceedings
  • Providing coverage advice to insurers in connection with losses arising from the failure of the Valleyfield Bridge and resulting Seaway closure
  • Advising on insurance policy wordings involving marine policies, media policies, and travel and health insurance policies, among others
  • Representing hospitals and physicians at the Consent and Capacity Board of Ontario and the Ontario Review Board
  • Appeals to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice and to the Ontario Court of Appeal from decisions of the Consent and Capacity Board of Ontario and the Ontario Review Board
  • Counsel on the leading Supreme Court of Canada case on the subject of treatment capacity
  • Counsel or co-counsel at five coroner’s inquests
  • Pollution Liability of Directors and Officers – Presentation to the Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS), May, 2013
  • Piracy – Insurance Considerations – Presentation to the Annual Conference of the Canadian Transport Lawyers Association – Moderator of the panel on Piracy: The Reach Across the Seas, Toronto, September 2012
  • Mental Health-The Forensic System – Presentation to the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth as part of the Professional Development Program of Osgoode Hall Law School, September, 2011
  • Implications of the Mazzei Decision on Review Board Practice – Presentation to the 4th Meeting of National Forensic Mental Health Leaders, Vancouver, March, 2011
  • Commercial Hull and Liability Claims – Paper presented to the Canadian Board of Marine Underwriters, October, 2009
  • Evidence at the Consent and Capacity Board – Paper presented at Canadian Institute conference “Managing Legal Risks and Responsibilities in Mental Health Care”, Toronto, April, 2009
  • Advanced Roundtable in Mental Health Law – Facilitator in Program presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada, March, 2009
  • Asbestos Litigation in Canada – Paper presented at the International Bar Association Conference, Buenos Aires, October, 2008
  • Issues Arising From the Interpretation of Claims – Made Insurance Policies in Canadian Law – Paper published by the Insurance Committee of the International Bar Association, 2008
  • Managing the risk of Liability Posed by Suicidal or Violent Patients – Paper presented at Canadian Institute conference “Managing Legal Risks and Responsibilities in Mental Health Care”, Toronto, April, 2008
  • Issues Canvassed in Dulong v. Merrill Lynch Canada Inc. – Paper presented at Ontario Bar Association conference, “Expert Evidence in Civil Litigation” – Toronto, October, 2007
  • Best Practices for Dealing With Substitute Decision Makers – Paper presented at Canadian Institute conference “Managing Legal Risks and Responsibilities in Mental Health Care”- Co-Chair of the conference, Toronto, April, 2007
  • Recent Developments in Professional Indemnity Insurance – Paper presented at the International Bar Association Conference, Chicago, September, 2006
  • Managing Legal Risks and Responsibilities in Mental Health Care – Co-Chair of the conference, Canadian Institute, Toronto, April, 2006
  • Professional Indemnity Insurance in the Wake of Enron: The Canadian Perspective – Paper presented at the International Bar Association Conference, San Francisco, September, 2003
  • The Procedural Requirements of the Mental Health Act: The Dawn of a New Age? – Paper presented at Canadian Institute conference, “Managing Legal Risks and Responsibilities in Mental Health Care” – Toronto, December, 2002
  • Deciding When to Disclose: How Far Can Accountants Push the Limit? – Paper presented at Insight conference, “Accountants’ Liability – New Challenges and Future Trends” – Toronto, June, 2002
  • Burden of Proof Issues in Multimodal Transport – Paper presented at the Federal Court Judges’ Seminar, Ottawa, April, 2002
  • Big “C” Water: Federal Legislation Affecting the Carriage of Toxic Chemicals on the Great Lakes – Paper presented at the Canadian Bar Association Annual Meeting, 1994
  • Developing An Enhanced Process for Marine Accident Investigation and Safety Promotion in an Increasingly Global Transportation System – Study prepared for the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act Review Commission, 1993
  • Limitation of Liability – The Case Against – Paper delivered to the Second Admiralty Seminar organized jointly by the Department of Justice and the Ship-Source Oil Pollution Fund – 1993
  • Get Everything Down in Writing – Paper delivered to The Association of Canadian Advertisers and published in Marketing magazine – June 19, 1987
  • Transportation of Dangerous Goods by Sea – Paper delivered to The Canadian Bar Association of Ontario and published in the collection entitled “Cargo Transportation” -1987

2010 – Present
Listed in the International Who’s Who of Shipping and Maritime Lawyers

2001 – 2004
Vice-President, Central Region, Canadian Maritime Law Association

2003- Present
Member of the International Bar Association

2000 – Present
Member of the Advocates’ Society

1999 – Present
Member of the Lawyers’ Club

1997-1998
Chairman, Canadian Bar Association, National Maritime Law Section

1996 – Present
Member of the Executive of the Canadian Maritime Law Association

1993 – Present
Member of the Association of Maritime Arbitrators of Canada

1992 – 1994
Co-Chair, Transportation Law Subsection, Canadian Bar Association – Ontario

1991 – 1992
Chair, Maritime Law Subsection, Canadian Bar Association – Ontario

1990 – Present
Member of the Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association

1989 – Present
Member of the Canadian Board of Marine Underwriters

1986 – Present
Member of the Marine Club

1986 – 1993
Member of the Board, Eden House, a half-way house for ex-psychiatric patients, Toronto (Chairman 1988-1990)

1985 – Present
Member of the Board of the Harry E. Foster Charitable Foundation, Toronto