John J. Wilson Associate

Speaks:  English

Year of Call: 2017 - Ontario

Primary office:  Toronto

John J. Wilson

John Wilson practises public law in Gowling WLG's Toronto office - chiefly in the areas of Indigenous, administrative and constitutional law.

He is currently completing his BCL at the University of Oxford, and is on a leave of absence from the Firm until August of 2021.

As part of Gowling WLG's Indigenous Law Group, John has assisted First Nations in various proceedings, including litigation involving the interpretation and application of modern and historic treaties, resource revenue sharing, contested elections, membership eligibility, and the duty to consult. He advises First Nations clients in self-government negotiations and on the submission and negotiation of claims under the Specific Claims Policy. He was also part of the team responsible for the settlement of the McLean Indian Day Schools Class Action.

In the administrative law space, John has assisted various clients, including First Nations, statutory boards, organizations, and individuals in judicial review applications in various courts.

He has appeared before the Federal Court, the Federal Court of Appeal, the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, and the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador.

John has also advised on division of powers and Charter issues, including freedom of association, equality rights, and rights to life, liberty and security of the person. He is co-author of Halsbury's Laws of Canada, Constitutional Law: Division of Powers.

John also coaches a team at the Kawaskimhon National Moot, an annual Indigenous law moot hosted by law schools across Canada.

Before joining Gowling WLG, John earned his Juris Doctorate at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he worked as a research assistant for two professors on Indigenous and constitutional law issues. Prior to law school, he earned a Bachelor of Arts, Honours, in Philosophy from Queen's University where he sat on the Alma Mater Society's Judicial Committee.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2017

    • Qualifications (Year of Call/Admission, etc.)
      Year of Call, Ontario
  • 2016

    • Education
      Osgoode Hall Law School. JD
    • Rankings & Awards
      Harold J. Rubenstein Prize in Civil Liberties, Osgoode Hall Law School
  • 2013

    • Rankings & Awards
      Queen’s Medal in Philosophy, Queen’s University
    • Education
      Queen's University, BA (Hons.)


  • County of Carleton Law Association
  • The Advocates’ Society
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Ontario Bar Association

Articles and presentations

Gehl v Canada: Circumscribing the Role of Charter Values? John J. Wilson and Guy Régimbald, Ontario Bar Association’s Constitutional, Civil Liberties, and Human Rights Law Section, 16 November 2017.

Morasse v Nadeau-Dubois: Does Contemptuous Expression Deserve Charter Protection? Ontario Bar Association’s Constitutional, Civil Liberties, and Human Rights Law Section, 22 November 2016.

Interjurisdictional Information Sharing and National Security: A Constitutional and Legislative Analysis, Jacques J.M. Shore, Brian A. Crane, John J. Wilson, (2016) 62:1 McGill LJ 207.