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Robert L. Armstrong
Partner, Leader, Commercial Litigation Group

Primary Office: Toronto

Robert L. Armstrong

Robert Armstrong is a partner in the Toronto office of Gowling WLG, practising in the area of advocacy. He is the leader of the firm’s Commercial Litigation Group. Robert is recognized by his peers and his clients as one of the top litigators in Canada. He has also been recognized by Best Lawyers, Chambers and Benchmark Canada for his outstanding litigation work, and was named one of Canada's most creative counsel by Lexpert.

Robert has extensive experience both as a trial and appellate lawyer and as a strategist and creative problem-solver in complex, multi-party, multi-jurisdictional disputes, working closely with clients and other counsel in all Canadian provinces, the United States, Europe and Asia. Robert appears as counsel before all levels of provincial and federal courts in Canada, including the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as before numerous administrative tribunals and international arbitrators. Robert’s areas of expertise include class actions, securities litigation and regulation, financial services, and capital markets litigation, including 25 years representing Canadian chartered banks, foreign banks, investment dealers and international accounting firms, directors’ & officers’ liability, national and international arbitration and alternative dispute resolution, shareholders’ rights and shareholder activism, and very significant corporate and commercial litigation.

INTERNATIONAL EXPERTISE

Robert regularly works with clients and lawyers in other jurisdictions. He has very close working relationships with clients and lawyers in the United States, Europe and Asia, and is frequently involved in multi-jurisdictional litigation. Such relationships allow Robert to assemble the right resources to seamlessly address any problems with an international dimension.


"What you did in organizing the mediation, structuring your group and using the momentum is the essence of skilled problem-solving. There ought to be an award for this kind of lawyering."
Former trial judge of the Superior Court of Ontario, June 2014

October2015

Lexpert’s Leading Canadian Lawyers in Global Mining , 2015-2016

September2015

The Best Lawyers in Canada 2016

Featured client work

Featured insights & resources

When is incivility professional misconduct? The appeal decision in Groia v. The Law Society of Upper Canada

Nicholas Kluge, Robert L. Armstrong

Article February 1, 2015

Memberships

Career & Recognition

2015

October 2015

Lexpert’s Leading Canadian Lawyers in Global Mining , 2015-2016

2015

September 2015

The Best Lawyers in Canada 2016

2015

July 2015

Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2015

2015

April 2015

Chambers Global 2015

2015

April 2015

Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada’s Leading Litigation Firms & Attorneys 2015

2014

September 2014

The Best Lawyers in Canada 2015

2014

July 2014

Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2014

2014

April 2014

Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada’s Leading Litigation Firms & Attorneys 2014

2014

April 2014

Chambers Global 2014

2014

April 2014

Lexpert's Leading Canadian Lawyers in Global Mining

2013

September 2013

The Best Lawyers in Canada 2014

2013

July 2013

Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2013

2013

March 2013

Benchmark Canada 2013

2013

February 2013

The Best Lawyers in Canada® 2013

2012

July 2012

Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2012

2012

February 2012

The Best Lawyers in Canada 2012

2002

2002

Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal

1999

1999

Lexpert Top 100 Canada-U.S. Litigators

1995

1995

Lexpert Top 100 Most Creative Lawyers

1981

1981

Year of Call, Ontario

1979

1979

University of Western Ontario, Second in Class

1976

1976

Wilfrid Laurier University, BA Hons., Gold Medal

Robert Armstrong
Profile highlights

#
Robert Armstrong

Robert Armstrong is a partner in the Toronto office of Gowling WLG, practising in the are...

Robert Armstrong
Featured insights & resources

When is incivility professional misconduct? The appeal decision in Groia v. The Law Society of Upper Canada

Nicholas Kluge, Robert L. Armstrong

Article February 1, 2015

Memberships

Insights & Resources

When is incivility professional misconduct? The appeal decision in Groia v. The Law Society of Upper Canada

Nicholas Kluge, Robert L. Armstrong

Article February 1, 2015

Robert Armstrong
Profile highlights

#
Robert Armstrong

Robert Armstrong is a partner in the Toronto office of Gowling WLG, practising in the are...

Insights & Resources

Speaking Engagements

Manufacturing success

Events April 29, 2015

Client Work

Agro-Farma wins Greek yogurt supply management battle in Federal Court

Client Work July 31, 2012
  • Class Actions, including large primary and secondary market trading securities actions, pension surplus claims, large misrepresentation and contract actions, banking disputes, consumer product disputes and pharmaceutical claims.
  • Securities Litigation and Regulation, including issuer and investment dealer disclosure and liability, broker liability, proceedings before Canada’s securities regulators, insider trading and the defence of charges under the Securities Act.
  • Financial Services and Capital Markets Litigation, including 28 years representing Canadian Chartered Banks, foreign banks, investment dealers and international accounting firms.
  • Directors’ and Officers’ Liability, including creditors’ claims, Securities Act proceedings and shareholders’ disputes.
  • National and International A.D.R., including court-ordered mediations and private commercial arbitrations around the world.
  • Corporate Commercial Litigation, including all matters relating to competition law, the breach of, or disputes regarding, commercial contracts, lender liability, the rights of debtors/creditors and multijurisdictional disputes involving cross-border matters and dealings with foreign corporations and counsel.

Recent Significant Briefs

  • Judicial Review — Lead counsel representing the manufacturer of Chobani Greek-style yogurt in a high-profile dispute regarding a test marketing permit that had been issued by the Minister of International Trade that allowed limited quantities of Chobani to be imported into Canada duty-free. The applicants contended that the import permit was unreasonable because the imports threatened Canada’s supply management system and sought to have the import permit struck down. The court dismissed the applications, and also ruled that the applicants, all of whom were significant competitors, all lacked standing.
  • Competition Litigation — Lead counsel on behalf of Porter Airlines and Regco Holdings in respect of numerous lawsuits commenced against them by competitors Air Canada Jazz and Air Canada in both the Federal and Ontario Superior Courts alleging conspiracy and anti-competitive behaviour; lead counsel on behalf of one of Canada’s largest financial organizations in all dealings with the Competition Bureau in relation to all Orders governing their conduct.
  • Consumer Product Class Action — Lead counsel on behalf of Magna Donnelly Corporation in the successful defence of a $1.4-billion dollar class action proceeding relating to the manufacture of door latches in Ford Motor Company vehicles.
  • Overtime Pay Class Action — Lead counsel for a Canadian bank in defence of a class action asserting entitlement to allegedly unpaid overtime by employees across Canada.
  • Pharmaceutical Class Actions — Lead counsel for GlaxoSmithKline in respect of multiple Canadian class action proceedings commenced in several provinces relating to the sale of Paxil in Canada.
  • International Arbitrations — Successful lead counsel in a several hundred million dollar international arbitration, involving lengthy arbitration hearings in Canada, the Caribbean and China.
  • Public Offering Class Actions — Lead counsel on behalf of Poseidon in respect of class action proceedings in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec; lead counsel on behalf of the Canadian Underwriter in respect of class action proceedings relating to Atlas Cold Storage and a series of public offerings made by that corporation in Canada;
  • Pet Food Class Actions — Lead counsel for a major U.S. manufacturer of pet foods in relation to all legal issues stemming from the class actions commenced in Canada.
  • Takeover Disputes and Mergers and Acquisitions — Counsel for the Special Committee of Board of Directors of Sterling Centrecorp Inc., including all regulatory hearings at the Ontario Securities Commission relating to a contested takeover bid by a third party; and lead counsel on behalf of public corporation in relation to the acquisition of it by a major competitor.
  • Mining/Securities Class Actions — Lead counsel for a Canadian investment dealer defendant in the successful defence of the class proceedings in a $3-billion case in British Columbia and Ontario, including all regulatory matters and cross-border strategies.
  • Pension Class Action — Lead counsel in the successful defence of a class action brought against CN Rail with respect to alleged pension entitlements.
  • USA Manufacturer — Lead counsel for a major American manufacturer of ceramic protective materials for the military in its legal claims against senior business executives involving alleged breaches of contract and other obligations.
  • Thimerosal Class Action — Lead counsel for GlaxoSmithKline in respect of the successful defence of the Canadian class proceedings relating to the use of Thimerosal in childhood vaccines.
  • Financial Services Syndicate — Co-lead counsel for a bank syndicate in a $300-million claim against the officers and directors of a failed public corporation.
  • Foreign Exchange Class Action — Lead counsel on behalf of a Canadian investment dealer in respect of class action proceedings relating to the method of calculating Foreign Exchange rates.
  • Software/Systems Litigation — Lead counsel for the Government of Canada in a complex, commercial contract dispute involving hundreds of millions of dollars in damages and millions of documents. This matter involved a dispute with Accenture and required the creation of an innovative document storage and recall system. It involved parties in Canada, the United States and Europe.
  • Fidelity Claims — Lead counsel on behalf of several Charter Banks and investment dealers in respect of over 600 separate civil claims, all regulatory matters and all insurance negotiations involving five multi-million dollar fidelity claims in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta.

Robert Armstrong
Profile highlights

#
Robert Armstrong

Robert Armstrong is a partner in the Toronto office of Gowling WLG, practising in the are...

Robert Armstrong
Featured insights & resources

When is incivility professional misconduct? The appeal decision in Groia v. The Law Society of Upper Canada

Nicholas Kluge, Robert L. Armstrong

Article February 1, 2015

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