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Jeffrey S. Leon L.S.M.


Specialist in Civil Litigation and Business Litigation Lawyer at Bennett Jones Toronto

T: 416.777.7472
A Certified Specialist in Civil Litigation by the Law Society of Upper Canada, Jeffrey Leon has a general litigation practice with a focus on business litigation.  He acts in a variety of litigation matters, including securities, commercial, corporate, class proceedings, product liability, professional negligence and health care. As well, he has acted in administrative law matters and has appeared in both domestic and international arbitrations as counsel.  He has been involved in numerous cross-border and international commercial disputes.

Jeff is recognized as a leading practitioner in corporate and commercial litigation, securities litigation and directors' and officers' liability by The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada and is also recognized by The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory and Best Lawyers in those areas as well as class actions and professional liability. He has been selected as one of the top international litigation practitioners in Expert Guides – Best of the Best.  He has been named by Best Lawyers as one of a select group of "Bet-the-Company Litigators" and as the Lawyer of the Year (2010) in class action litigation (Toronto). Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers for Business recognizes Jeff in the area of dispute resolution as an "excellent attorney with an erudite approach to matters" who is "well respected in the courts" and has "a significant presence at the appellate level."  Benchmark Canada lists Jeff as a "Local litigation star" in the areas of class actions, commercial litigation, competition, intellectual property and securities and has commented on his being "widely championed for his commanding court presence … [he] has a very dignified air about him.  He is very easy-going and good-natured but a very serious litigator and gets instant respect from the bench" ... He is "a very highly regarded general litigator and advocate with a wealth of experience."  Who's Who Legal:  Canada has described him as "world class … impresses clients with his 'steadfast commitment' and 'pragmatic approach.'"

In 2005, Jeff was awarded the Law Society Medal by the Law Society of Upper Canada in recognition of his outstanding service and contributions to the legal profession.  In 2010, he became the second recipient of The Advocates' Society's Catzman Award for Civility and Professionalism, which recognizes individuals who have demonstrated a high degree of professionalism and civility in the practice of law.  In 2013, Jeff was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition for his achievements in law and his commitment to serving his community.  In October 2014, Jeff received the prestigious Ontario Bar Association Award of Excellence in Civil Litigation.

Jeff is Treasurer of the American College of Trial Lawyers.  He is a former member of the College's Board of Regents, former Chair of the 2014 Regents Nominating Committee, former vice-chair of the Access to Justice Committee and former Chair of the Ontario Province Committee and the Canada-United States Committee.  He is a fellow and former member of the Board of Directors of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and a member of the International Society of Barristers.  Jeff is also a fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America and an honourary member of the Commercial Bar Association (UK).  Jeff is a Past President of The Advocates' Society, a former Chair of the Board of Directors of Pro Bono Ontario and a former Chair of The Sopinka Cup Society.  He is a former Co Chair of the University of Toronto's Tribunal and a former member of the Law Alumni Association Council at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.

A former law clerk to the Chief Justice of Ontario, he is a regular author, lecturer, panelist and teacher of trial skills, having published books and numerous articles and participated in many CLE programs. He is a member of the editorial boards of Class Action Review and Corporate Liability/White Collar Crime Review (The Canadian Institute).

For over 35 years, Jeff's counsel and advice have been sought in numerous contexts.  He has acted for several independent committees in a variety of corporate transactions.  For many years, he was a member of a team of independent counsel that provided advice to the Discipline Committee of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.  He served as legal counsel to the Chiropractic Review Committee of the College of Chiropractors of Ontario, and in 2008 he received the Presidential Award of Excellence for his contribution to the work of that College.

Select Experience

  • Pro Bono Law Ontario, as counsel in the Supreme Court of Canada's decision in Hinse v Canada (Attorney General) on the issue of indemnification for legal costs in private pro bono litigation. Hinse v Canada (Attorney General), 2015 SCC 35
  • Duluth Metals Limited in connection with the acquisition by Antofagasta plc of all of the outstanding common shares of Duluth Metals Limited by way of a plan of arrangement for a total transaction value of approximately $104.6 million. Read more
  • Expedia, Inc. in a national class action for breach of contract, including a successful post-certification motion for summary judgment. Magill v. Expedia, Inc., 2014 ONSC 1634

Recent Publications

Blog Posts

Recent Recognitions

  • 2017, Chambers Canada

    Jeffrey S. Leon L.S.M., ranked, Dispute Resolution: Class Action (Defence): Canada

    "We always appreciate his wise counsel. He knows how to bring matters to a good resolution and works well with the plaintiff counsel."
  • 2017, Chambers Canada

    Jeffrey S. Leon L.S.M., ranked, Dispute Resolution: Ontario

    "high-quality lawyer."
  • 2017, Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada

    Jeffrey S. Leon L.S.M., recognized as one of Canada's leading class action lawyers

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