Rachel McMillan Partner

Speaks:  English

Year of Call: 2016 - Ontario

Primary phone: +1 416-862-4315

Fax: +1 416-862-7661

Email: rachel.mcmillan@gowlingwlg.com

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Primary office:  Toronto

Rachel McMillan

Rachel McMillan is a lawyer in Gowling WLG’s Toronto office, practising in the firm’s Advocacy Department.

Rachel’s practice focuses on civil and commercial disputes, including class actions, construction and infrastructure projects (including public-private partnerships), shareholders disputes and claims against directors/officers.

Known for exemplary project management skills, Rachel is adept at leading large teams in complex litigation. She is skilled in advising on legal strategy, and in managing and providing efficient eDiscovery strategies on voluminous, document-intensive matters. She has strong written advocacy skills and is experienced in conducting long, hybrid trials. Rachel was the lead associate on the team representing the plaintiff in a class action, which proceeded to a 55-day long virtual, hybrid trial in early 2021.

Rachel volunteers with Pro Bono Ontario's Free Legal Advice Hotline and serves on the board of directors of the Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History, an organization that promotes and preserves Canada’s legal history. She mentors students and junior associates in the firm and through the First Generation Network. She is also a member of the Toronto office’s Momentum Committee, focusing on advancing the firm’s diversity, equity and inclusion strategy.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2016

    • Qualifications (Year of Call/Admission, etc.)
      Year of Call, Ontario
  • 2015

    • Education
      Western University, JD
  • 2012

    • Education
      Queen's University, BA Hons. (with distinction)


  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Ontario Bar Association
  • The Advocates’ Society
  • Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers
  • Filipino Canadian Lawyers Network

Rachel has provided eDiscovery and CaseLines training to lawyers, law clerks, and clients. In addition, Rachel has given and/or contributed to the following presentations, as well as authored the following publications:


  • Co-author, “Admissibility of Electronic Evidence”, OsgoodePD The 2022 Civil Litigator’s Survival Guide to Evidence (January 2022, with Sandra Barton)
  • Speaker, “Summary Trial Essentials”, OBA Civil Litigation / Young Lawyers Division Program (October 2021).


  • “Preventing Self-Incrimination In Cross-Border Investigations” (May 2016, with Glen Jennings and Usman Sheikh)
  • “Correcting Judicial Inconsistencies: Court Of Appeal For Ontario Overrules One Of Its Own Decisions” (August 2015)

Representative Work

  • Lender-Auditor Class Action – Represented syndicate of lenders in action against auditors of borrower for auditor’s negligence and misrepresentation.  Succeeded on appeal in dismissing auditor’s summary judgment motion.  Action settled resulting in one of the largest settlement awards approved by the court in an auditor’s negligence case.
  • BSE Class Action – Representing class of cattle farmers in an action against the federal government. The action arose from the impact on Canadian cattle farmers of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy and the federal government’s response to it. The matter proceeded to a 55-day virtual, hybrid trial.
  • Dispute re Issuance of Convertible Debt to Related Parties – Defended a leading water treatment company and its directors and officers. Minority shareholders claimed that a convertible debt issuance was oppressive and breached statutory requirements applicable to non-arms' length transactions. The claim was settled on the eve of trial.
  • Shareholder Dispute – Defended multiple shareholders of a leading real estate and development company in a shareholder dispute involving the oppression remedy.
  • Dispute re Private Placement – Defending a company and its directors in a dispute related to a private placement equity raise. Investors allege fraudulent misrepresentation, conversion, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, breach of fiduciary duties, and breach of Securities Act (Ontario) requirements.
  • Large-scale Infrastructure Dispute – Represented contractor in schedule delay, schedule disruption, negligence, and errors and omissions dispute relating to a light rail transit project.
  • Shipbuilding Dispute – Representing contractor in shipbuilding contract and shipyard dispute regarding schedule delay, contract administration, negligence, and errors and omissions.
  • Gold Mining Project – Representing owner/operator on gold mining project regarding contract administration, risk management and mitigation, negligence, and errors and omissions.