Francine Martel is a litigation partner in Gowling WLG's Montréal office. With 27 years of experience as a litigator, she is recognized for her versatility in advising clients on a wide range of legal issues. She represents clients in complex matters in various areas, including civil and commercial disputes, civil and professional liability, insurance law, disciplinary law, and non-contentious matters.
Her highly diversified practice allows her to draw on many sources to devise effective and innovative solutions to the challenges faced by her clients. Well-versed in the intricacies of court proceedings, Francine has represented clients before all levels of the Quebec court system, as well as before regulators, specialized arbitrators and mediators.
Francine is well-respected for her dynamic approach to the law and her delivery of proactive and personable service. Below are some examples of cases in which Francine has played a leading role in successfully representing her clients:
- Represented the interests of prosecutor of the Crown Yves Berthiaume in an action for malicious prosecution undertaken by Gilles Perron. This matter raised numerous legal issues of a criminal and civil nature (liability and defamation).
- Represented sisters Yseult and Sylvie Riopelle in numerous disputes (in Canada and in France) regarding the estate of the artist Jean-Paul Riopelle.
- Represented the Honourable judge Réjean Paul JSC in contempt of court proceedings in the context of the mega-trial instituted against the Hells Angels.
- Represented, before the Superior Court and Court of Appeal, Claude Robinson and Nilem inc., his production house, in the high-profile Robinson v. Cinar & al. case. Following a proceeding that lasted nearly eight months, Claude Robinson won his case in a ruling by the Honourable Justice Claude Auclair JSC, which was upheld in part on appeal.
- Represented Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation in judicial recourses for damages brought against notaries with regards to real estate flips. This case confirmed the right of financial institutions to obtain trust account details in the transactions they finance.
- Defended numerous professionals in professional liability proceedings.
Francine is also highly involved in her profession and in the community. Since 1996, she has taught a course in non-contentious matters at the Bar School of Montréal. She was also member of the Young Bar Association of Montréal's Board of Directors and of several committees of The Bar of Montreal. She has been a member of the Committee on women in the profession of The Bar of Montreal since 2013.
She is currently a member of the Québec Bar's Compensation Fund and of the Québec Bar's Council for the Arbitration of Accounts of Advocates. She is also member of the Canadian Bar Association's Elder Law Section, and a board member of the Montreal Diet Dispensary, whose mission since 1879 has been to promote health in the community, especially among pregnant women whose babies are at risk.