Ilan Ishai is an experienced litigator, with a practice focusing on class actions, commercial disputes and appellate advocacy. He has acted on behalf of clients in various complex and multi-party commercial, product liability, competition, fraud, director/officer liability and oppression matters. Ilan has appeared as lead counsel before all levels of court in Ontario, as well as the Supreme Court of Canada. He provides strategic advice to companies and individuals at all stages of complex litigation.
Ilan has defended clients across a broad variety of industries in claims involving automotive parts, consumer products, misrepresentation claims, contractual disputes, insurance and anti-competitive conduct. He has recently acted for:
- Hyundai and Kia in defence of various class actions relating to: (1) allegedly defective engines that create a risk of non-crash engine failure; (2) an alleged defect in the airbag control unit that creates a risk of airbag non-deployment; and (3) an alleged defect in the ABS control module creating the risk of fire;
- Volkswagen in defence of several class actions and individual claims relating to misrepresentation of the emissions in its diesel vehicles;
- Equitable Bank in a claim against its insurer for a denied fidelity bond claim arising from forged loan documentation;
- Canadian Pacific Railway Company in defending a class action relating to the wildfire that destroyed the Village of Lytton, British Columbia;
- The Beer Store in the successful defence and summary dismissal of a $1.4-billion competition and consumer class action alleging anti-competitive conduct and unjust enrichment; and
- Ford Motor Company in defence of class actions relating to various alleged defects in certain vehicles' water pumps, shift cable bushings and engine compartments that leak fluids causing the risk of fire.
As part of his pro bono activities, Ilan represented the National Self-Represented Litigants Project in an intervention at the Supreme Court of Canada in Pintea v. Johns, in which the Court ultimately endorsed the CJC's Statement of Principles on Self-represented Litigants and Accused Persons. Ilan has also served as duty counsel to self-represented parties appearing in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice and the Court of Appeal for Ontario.
Ilan joined Bennett Jones after summering and articling with the firm. He is a member of the Advocates' Society, the Canadian Bar Association, the New York State Bar Association and the International Association of Defence Counsel (an invitation-only, peer-reviewed association). Ilan is a member of the Board of Directors of the Toronto Design Offsite Festival, a not-for-profit dedicated to the enhancement and promotion of Canadian design. Ilan also sits on Practical Law Canada's Corporate & Commercial Litigation Advisory Board.