Commercial Arbitration and ADR


Wherever appropriate, we encourage the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) to avoid the reputational risks, delays and costs that can be associated with some litigation. Osler is a recognized leader in ADR. Our arbitration practice is designed to help our clients leverage arbitration and ADR effectively while managing financial, reputational, and business risks as privately and efficiently as possible.  Our litigators do not “dabble” in arbitration matters; members of Osler’s International Commercial Arbitration and ADR Group have expertise in a range of ADR techniques and can advise on which process will best achieve your company’s goals for resolving disputes.

Our practice includes:

Proactive planning

  • Conducting reviews of clients’ existing patterns of conflict resolution and litigation to evaluate whether ADR can reduce the organization’s costs and resolve disputes more effectively or efficiently.

Drafting/repairing clauses

  • We have expertise in drafting and reviewing mediation and/or arbitration clauses, including negotiating clauses that will best achieve the parties’ objectives in the most appropriate forum.

Specific arbitration experience

  • We regularly represent clients in mediation, arbitration, private adjudication and appeals, and novel forms of ADR that hold unique procedural challenges including ad hoc arbitrations.

  • We have represented clients across all major arbitration regimes and tribunals.

Arbitration Regimes:

  • International Chamber of Commerce
  • The first two investment disputes under Canada's bilateral investment treaties
  • The London Court of International Arbitration
  • NAFTA dispute resolution panels
  • The Federal Court of Canada
  • International arbitration agencies
  • Canadian arbitration agencies
  • Ad hoc arbitration


  • The U.S. Department of Commerce
  • Indian Ministry of Commerce
  • China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM)
  • The Canada Border Services Agency
  • The Canadian International Trade Tribunal


Related Expertise

Mark Gelowitz

Partner, Litigation

Tristram Mallett

Partner, Litigation

Lauren Tomasich

Partner, Litigation
  • Beaverbrook Art Gallery

    Beaverbrook Art Gallery in an arbitration relating to trust law and ownership of art works valued in excess of $100 million. We acted for the Gallery in its successful defence of the arbitration, and in the subsequent arbitral appeal before a panel of distinguished retired appellate judges.

  • Toronto Terminal Railways

    Toronto Terminal Railways in an arbitration against the City of Toronto. At issue was the annual rent to be paid by the TTR to the city as well as the establishment of a new rental agreement. Also represented this client in a successful appeal to the Ontario Court of Appeal regarding the arbitration tribunal’s jurisdiction to award interest on rental arrears.

  • Noel Stahl – Und Maschinbau GMBH

    Noel Stahl – Und Maschinbau GMBH in successfully staying construction lien actions in Ontario in favour of an English arbitration.

  • Venator Group Canada Inc.

    Venator Group Canada Inc. (formerly Woolworth Canada Inc.) in arbitration proceedings against Wal-Mart Canada Inc., arising from Wal-Mart’s acquisition of 122 Woolco stores.

  • Stone & Webster Canada L.P.

    Stone & Webster Canada L.P. in a successful application to appoint an arbitrator in a complex multi-million dollar construction dispute.

  • Ontario Hydro

    Ontario Hydro in a multi-million dollar arbitration relating to the termination of a uranium supply contract with Denison Mines.

  • Subway Franchise Systems

    Subway Franchise Systems in upholding an arbitration clause requiring hearing in foreign jurisdiction.

  • Masterfile Corporation

    Masterfile Corporation in a successful application to compel appointment of arbitrator in international dispute.

  • Dell Computer Corporation

    Dell Computer Corporation in a class action involving arbitration and consumer dispute issues.

  • iMoney Corp.

    iMoney Corp. in an arbitration against Quebecor Media Inc. regarding a dispute arising from the purchase and sale of the assets of a Web-based financial information and services business.

  • Find More

Pitfalls of arbitration clauses, waivers and standard clauses in consumer contracts

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