Richard G. Dearden Partner Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers

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Téléphone principal : +1 613-786-0135

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Bureau principal :  Ottawa

Richard G. Dearden

Rick Dearden, a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, is a senior litigation partner in Gowling WLG's Ottawa office, practising primarily in the areas of defamation and media law, freedom of information, administrative law, and international trade and customs law. In 2022, Rick received The Advocates' Society's John P. Nelligan Award for Excellence in Advocacy.

Rick's accomplishments have been recognized by Chambers Global, Lexpert's Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (Litigation – Defamation; International Trade Litigation), Lexpert Guide To The Leading U.S./Canada Cross-Border Litigation Lawyers, Best Lawyers in Canada (International Trade; Defamation and Media Law), Benchmark Canada's Guide To Canada's Leading Litigation Attorneys, Legal Post's Top 100 Canada-U.S. Litigators, the Canadian Who's Who, the International Who's Who of Trade and Customs Lawyers, and Who's Who Legal-Canada.

Rick has appeared as counsel before the Supreme Court of Canada, all levels of court in Ontario, the Federal Courts, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, Chapter 19 Free Trade Agreement binational panels, and served as Chair of a softwood lumber panel. Rick acted as co-counsel for Eli Lilly and Company in a NAFTA investor-state arbitration against the Government of Canada.

During the NAFTA negotiations and implementation, Rick acted for the Government of Mexico as one of its external counsel. He also acted for the U.S. Department of Commerce during the negotiation of Chapter 19 of the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement and for the USTR during the implementation of the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement. Rick also served as Vice-Chair of the International Bar Association's Trade Law SubCommittee and as a member of the American Bar Association's Council for the Section on International Law and Practice.

In his media and defamation law practice, Rick has acted as counsel in leading defamation trials and appeals, freedom of press cases under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and freedom of information cases. Rick acted as counsel for the Ottawa Citizen before the Supreme Court of Canada in the seminal cases of Cusson v Quan and Grant v Torstar that created the new "public interest responsible communication defence to libel actions in Canada. He also taught the Media and Defamation Law Course at the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Common Law.

Rick served as Chair of the IBA's Media Law Committee and as a member of the IBA's Council for the General Practice Section. He is also a recipient of the President's Award from the Centre For Investigative Journalism for furthering the cause of investigative journalism in Canada.

Rick served on the Board of Directors for the Ottawa Citizen Literacy Foundation and The Hnatyshyn Foundation, and as the auditor of the Ottawa Citizen's Cappies awards.

He is an avid marathoner and tennis player.

Rick has spoken frequently to national and international organizations. A prolific author, Rick's publications include the Free Trade Law Reporter, the Canadian Trade Law Reporter, a chapter in Freedom of Expression and the Charter and papers published in the Law Society of Upper Canada's Special Lectures. His articles have been published in Lexpert, the World Trade Law Journal, ImportWeek, the ABA's International Law News, and the Canada-United States Law Journal.

Recent articles and presentations include:

  • Defamation in the Age of the Internet - County of Carleton Law Association Civil Litigation Conference, November 2012
  • "Injunctive Relief for Cyberlibel and Breach of Privacy in Canada", American Bar Association - Section on International Law, 2012 Spring Conference, New York
  • Paper, "Key Defences to Defamation", Osgoode Hall - Defamation Law in the Internet Age: Essentials for Litigators and Corporate Counsel Conference, September 2011

Mandats représentatifs

  • Was a member of the legal team that represented the Government of Mexico during the negotiation and implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
  • Represented the United States Trade Representative during the negotiation of Chapter 19 of the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement and the implementation of the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement.
  • Provides strategic advice about the North American Free Trade Agreement and the World Trade Organization's Agreements, particularly the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights.
  • Has represented the Ottawa Citizen for over 30 years in defamation and freedom of the press cases, and acted as counsel for the Right Honourable Prime Minister Stephen Harper in libel cases.
  • Also acts for the Information Commissioner of Canada in access to information matters and acted for the Office of the Auditor General during the hearings of the Commission of Inquiry Into The Sponsorship Program and Advertising Activities (the Gomery Inquiry) and during audits.