Smart & Biggar > Montreal, Canada > Firm Profile

Smart & Biggar
SUITE 3300

Canada > Intellectual property Tier 1

The leading intellectual property boutique in Canada, Smart & Biggar focuses exclusively on IP law from its five offices across the country. The team’s generous national footprint was further boosted in September 2023 following its combination with fellow Canadian IP boutique, Ridout & Maybee, which added an additional 30 lawyers to the group. It also plugs into a significant international platform through its recent membership of the IPH Limited Group, which brings together a network of six firms across nine jurisdictions. In Toronto, Mark Evans is a go-to specialist for contentious and non-contentious trademark matters, while IP litigator Mark Biernacki contributes strong experience in an array of patents, trademarks, copyrights and industrial designs. The Toronto team also includes IP disputes expert Sheldon Hamilton; Yoon Kang, who specializes in life sciences patent litigation and prosecution; life sciences expert Nancy Pei; managing director Matthew ZischkaGraham Hood, who was appointed trademarks practice group leader in August 2023, and Urszula Wojtyra. In Ottawa, key figures include Steven Garland, a 30-year veteran in IP litigation; life sciences patents and chemicals/bio practice group leader Daphne Lainson, who was also appointed in August 2023; Elliott Simcoe, who draws on over two decades of experience in electrical and computer-related matters; and Kohji Suzuki, who utilizes a mastery of strategic IP enforcement. Montreal-based litigator François Guay is also highly regarded. Also in August 2023, Jean-Sébastien Dupont in Montreal was promoted to IP litigation practice group leader and Jonas Gifford was appointed patents engineering and ICT (EICT) head.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Zischka;  Graham Hood; Jonas Gifford; Daphne Lainson; Jean-Sébastien Dupont




Key clients

Dow Chemical Company



The NOCO Company

Rogers Media

Bell Media

Vidéotron Ltée; Groupe TVA

Canada > Cannabis Tier 4

Intellectual property powerhouse Smart & Biggar leverages its firm-wide focus on life sciences, regulatory law, IP strategy, and marketing and advertising to excel in representing cannabis clients on compliance and IP-related issues. As a qualified pharmacist and patent agent, Toronto-based department head Alice Tseng is highly sought after for her life sciences expertise, including cannabis-related matters. Toronto-based Graham Hood is also noted for brand protection and trademark-related work.

Practice head(s):

Alice Tseng

Other key lawyers:

Smart & Biggar is Canada’s largest and leading firm practising exclusively in intellectual property and technology law with offices in Ottawa, Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary.

The firm offers a sophisticated level of technical depth and expertise – virtually every member of the firm has an engineering or scientific educational background, with over one third having graduate degrees in their area of specialization, and many of its lawyers are also registered patent and trademark agents. Smart & Biggar has prepared, filed and prosecuted more patent and trademark applications than any other firm in Canada and its services are consistently lauded in leading international surveys.

The firm offers clients technology-specific experience in many sectors, including: life sciences and pharmaceutical, chemical, industrial and mechanical, electrical and electronic, software, information technology and internet, consumer products, media and broadcasting, financial services, aerospace and defence, transportation, consulting services, energy and utilities, food, beverage and tobacco, luxury goods and apparel, metals and mining, retail, telecommunications and cleantech.

Smart & Biggar is also a dominant force in intellectual property litigation. The firm has efficient and highly effective trial lawyers, and no other Canadian firm can claim a more distinguished and successful record. The firm routinely handles Canada’s most commercially important and technically complex intellectual property cases involving high stakes. Many of its victories on behalf of clients are leading Canadian precedents, and it has represented clients in the Supreme Court of Canada on more than 75 occasions.

Smart & Biggar is recognized as Canada’s leading IP litigation firm, and its formidable team of litigators provides clients with the unparalleled protection they need. It litigates across Canada — in both the Common Law and Civil Law Courts, at the highest appellate levels and in both official languages.

The firm has been recognized as Canada’s “Intellectual Property Firm of the Year” by Chambers & Partners in 2018, “IP Litigation Firm of the Year” by Benchmark Canada for nine consecutive years, Canada’s “IP Boutique Firm of the Year” by Managing Intellectual Property’s North America Awards, and Canada’s “Go-to firm for IP litigation” by The Legal 500 Canada.

Intellectual property rights are only valuable if they can be protected and exploited intelligently. Smart & Biggar offers a full complement of patent and trademark agency services to associate firms and in-house counsel seeking to protect, exploit or litigate intellectual property rights in Canada. The firm provides unparalleled IP counsel by safeguarding the competitive position of its clients and maximising the value of their IP assets.

Whether your innovations are the product of a moment’s inspiration or the result of years of investment in research and development, let Smart & Biggar demonstrate the many ways in which it can help you to leverage the full potential of your efforts.

Smart & Biggar proudly operates as part of the IPH Limited group, under its own brand and independent from other IPH member firms. IPH is an international intellectual property services group; a network of member firms working throughout 10 IP jurisdictions, with clients in more than 25 countries.

Department Name Email Telephone
Managing Director Matthew Zischka
Practice Group Leader, Trademarks Graham Hood
Practice Group Leader, Patents: Engineering and ICT Jonas Gifford
Practice Group Leader, Patents: Life Sciences and Chem/Bio Daphne Lainson
Practice Group Leader, IP Litigation and Legal Jean-Sébastien Dupont
Number of Principals (Lawyers) : 48
Number of Principals (Patent Agents) : 10