Shawn Irving - Commercial Litigation Lawyer

Shawn Irving

Partner, Litigation

Key Contact: Private Equity and Investment Fund Disputes

Contact Information

tel: 416.862.4733



Shawn is an experienced commercial litigator who focuses on delivering value to Osler’s clients in their high-stakes business disputes. Whether acting on a complex multi-jurisdictional class action, a contested dispute over the dissolution of a private company, or the restructuring of an insolvent company, Shawn tirelessly advocates for those he represents while remaining committed to obtaining the best practical results.

Shawn acts predominately for corporate, banking and other financial sector clients, and has significant expertise in the insolvency and restructuring and private equity and investment fund space. He regularly represents clients in securities, commercial and insolvency proceedings, as well as in investigations and enforcement proceedings involving various securities regulators. Some of Shawn’s recent non-confidential mandates have included defending Manulife Financial in several multi- jurisdictional class actions; representing Corus Entertainment in its successful response to an OSC application; successfully defending a shareholder rights plan; successfully resisting an oppression remedy claim; and defending Royal Bank of Canada in a class action brought by retail investors following the collapse of a major offshore investment fund. Shawn has also acted as debtor counsel in numerous CCAA proceedings, including CanWest, Target Canada, Sears Canada, Phoenix Brands, Hollander Sleep Products, Wayland Group, SFP Canada d/b/a Papyrus, Brooks Brothers, and Just Energy. He has also acted in several contested receivership proceedings.

Personally invested in identifying innovative solutions for clients, Shawn is a current member of Osler’s Innovation Council, where he works to drive efficiencies, predictability, and lower costs for clients. Shawn has supported the development and execution of Osler’s adoption of cutting-edge technology in the legal space, including AI, service delivery improvements, and the broad and creative use of Alternative Fee Arrangements

Shawn was named a “Rising Star” by Lexpert magazine in 2014, a “Litigation Lawyer to Watch” in 2015, a “Future Star” by Benchmark Litigation, and has been recognized in the area of Corporate and Commercial Litigation by Best Lawyers in Canada between 2017- 2021.

  • Nieuport Aviation Infrastructure Partners

    Nieuport Aviation in obtaining a judgment of over $130 million against Porter Airlines in the case of Porter Airlines Inc. v. Nieuport Aviation

  • TerraFarma

    TerraFarma in its up to $68 million acquisition by Aurora Cannabis

  • AltaCorp Capital Inc.

    AltaCorp Capital Inc., financial advisor to CanniMed Therapeutics in connection with the acquisition by Aurora Cannabis Inc.

  • Manulife

    Manulife in a proposed class action commenced in British Columbia relating to the distribution of mortgage insurance products by Manulife’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Benesure Canada Inc.

    • Wayland Group Corp. in connection with its CCAA proceedings
    • SFP Canada Ltd. in connection with its CCAA proceedings
    • Phoenix Brands Canada; Payless Shoes; Hollander Sleep Products; Jack Cooper Ventures and BBGI Canada (f/k/a Brooks Brothers Canada) in their respective Part IV CCAA Proceedings
    • Bondfield Construction in connection with its CCAA Proceedings
    • Sears Canada Inc. in connection with its CCAA proceedings
    • Corus Entertainment Inc. in its successful response to an application made to the Ontario Securities Commission by The Catalyst Group Inc. relating to Corus’ proposed acquisition of Shaw Media from Shaw Communications Ltd.
    • Canadian Oil Sands Limited (COS) before the Alberta Securities Commission in successfully resisting an application by Suncor Energy Inc. (Suncor) to immediately cease trade the poison pill of COS adopted in response to the Suncor take-over bid
    • Target Canada Co., in connection with its orderly wind down under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act
    • Successfully represented Equity Ventures International Holdings Ltd., a major creditor of CanaSea Oil and Gas Group Pte. Ltd., in having a CCAA Initial Order terminated and declared void ab initio
    • Successfully represented Jazz Aviation in a complex cost benchmarking arbitration against Air Canada
    • Asian Coast Development (Canada) Inc. in successfully defending against a $24 million claim for damages brought by two New York hedge funds.  The hedge funds were seeking damages and other relief under the oppression remedy provisions of the CBCA
    • CanWest Global Communications Corp. in its successful restructuring under the Companies Creditors Arrangement Act
    • Successfully represented Greater Toronto Airports Authority and the Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport Authority in an aircraft seizure dispute arising from the insolvency of Skyservice Airlines
    • Various entities controlled by Carl Icahn in proceedings before the British Columbia Securities Commission and the British Columbia Supreme Court in connection with a take-over bid for Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.
    • Smurfit-Stone Container Canada Inc. in a CCAA court sanctioned sale of 1,000,000 acres of private timberlands in Quebec
    • A leading Canadian bank and brokerage firm in an action commenced by a Canadian children’s animation company involving a wide range of issues including breach of contract, negligence and unjust enrichment
    • RBC in a class action brought on behalf of Canadian and offshore retail investors who incurred an investment loss caused by the collapse of a major offshore investment fund
    • An international media company in a complex commercial arbitration involving a wide range of issues, including a dispute over certain post-closing working capital adjustments
    • Sears Holdings Corporation in proceedings before the Ontario Securities Commission and the Ontario Divisional Court in relation to Sears Holdings’ take-over bid for the shares of Sears Canada Inc.
    • Just Energy in connection with its CCAA proceedings
    • Manulife Financial in several multi-jurisdictional class actions
  • Find More

  • Best Lawyers in Canada: Recognized in Corporate and Commercial Litigation
  • Benchmark Litigation Canada: Recognized in Dispute Resolution (Future Star)
  • Legal 500: Recognized as a Leading Individual in Dispute Resolution: Ontario
  • Thomson Reuters: "Stand-out Lawyer"
  • Lexpert Magazine: Recognized as a “Rising Star” (2014) and “Litigation Lawyer to Watch” (2015)

  • Journalists for Human Rights, Various Legal Assistance

  • ADR Institute of Canada
  • Canadian Bar Association - Ontario
  • Law Society of Ontario
  • Advocates Society