John Birch


 | Toronto

John Birch* is a partner in the Restructuring & Insolvency Group at Cassels. For almost 25 years, John has acted for debtors, creditors, receivers, monitors, trustees, and directors in a wide variety of proceedings under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act and Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act, including some of the most significant Canadian insolvencies in recent years such as Sears Canada Inc. He currently represents a major stakeholder in one of Canada’s largest construction company insolvencies. He also regularly represents creditors’ committees and other official committees in cross-border insolvencies.

In addition to his work as an insolvency litigator, John handles a wide range of commercial litigation, including creditors’ remedies, contractual disputes, shareholder litigation, and Aboriginal litigation.

In recognition of this work, John has been acknowledged as a leader in his field by such legal publications as IFLR1000 (Insolvency) and Legal 500 Canada (Litigation).

John has been involved with the Inter-Pacific Bar Association for many years and currently acts as Co-Chair of the Insolvency Committee and also as a member of the IPBA Council. The IPBA is an international association of business and commercial lawyers drawn from more than 65 jurisdictions around the world. He has also been an active participant with the International Insolvency Institute.

John is a frequent speaker at conferences including those hosted by the Canadian Bar Association, Osgoode Hall Law School, the University of British Columbia, and the IPBA. He is the author of chapters on litigation and arbitration in the Canada-U.S. Commercial Law Guide, a loose-leaf service published by Thomson Carswell, a co-author of the Canada: Ontario and common law provinces chapter of Commercial Lending Law: Second Edition, published by the American Bar Association, and author of the insolvency commentary in Q&A Overview of Construction Projects in Canada published by Thomson Reuters for Practical Law.

At Cassels, John is a member of the Audit and Risk Management Committee and previously spent nine years as the firm’s General Counsel while simultaneously maintaining a full-time billable practice.

*denotes Professional Corporation

  • IFLR1000 (Financial Restructuring)
  • Legal 500 Canada (Dispute Resolution)
  • LL.B., Osgoode Hall Law School, 1995
  • M.B.A., Schulich School of Business, 1995
  • B.A. (with High Distinction) (Int’l Relations), University of Toronto, 1991
  • Ontario, 1997
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Inter-Pacific Bar Association, Co-Chair, Insolvency Committee and Member, IPBA Council
  • Ontario Bar Association
  • Toronto Lawyers Association