Smart & Biggar > Toronto, Canada > Firm Profile

Smart & Biggar
York Street

Canada > Intellectual property Tier 1

Smart & Biggar is Canada’s leading IP and technology boutique, leveraging over 130 years in the market and five offices nationally. In Toronto, Mark Evans is a star name for trademark protection, management and counselling, also enjoying a track record in precedent setting disputes, whereas Nancy Pei is a market leader for pharmaceutical patents and litigation, as well as operations within the life sciences sector; the duo are based alongside Matthew Zischka, the firm’s managing partner, Sheldon Hamilton, who leads the litigation group, as well as Mark Biernacki, an up-and-coming partner for all-manner of disputes, including trademark, copyright, patent and industrial design proceedings within the higher courts. The Ottawa office is home to firm chair, Daphne Lainson, as well as Elliott Simcoe who leads the patents, electrical and mechanical group, and Steven Garland who has undertaken all-manner of critical disputes for names such as Amazon, McDonald’s and Shell. François Guay serves as chair of the IP strategy group, operating from the Montreal office, and has notably provided representation in over 100 jurisprudence cases including those with patent, industrial design and copyright elements.

Practice head(s):

Daphne Lainson; Matthew Zischka; Sheldon Hamilton; Elliott Simcoe; François Guay; Kohji Suzuki


Other key lawyers:

Mark Evans; Steven Garland; Mark Biernacki; Sheldon Hamilton; Nancy Pei; Jeremy Want; Jean-Sébastien Dupont; Graham Hood; Urszula Wojtyra; Guillaume Lavoie Ste-Marie; Yoon Kang


‘The team is innovative and efficient. They will provide several options, where available, and have a good grasp of business imperatives. They are practical and respond to the actual question asked. Their knowledge of the pharmaceutical landscape is impressive. They put together small teams to keep costs down. Their depth of IP knowledge is an asset.’

‘Sheldon Hamilton – excellent persuasive and cohesive arguments and very practical, Yoon Kang – depth of knowledge is impressive, very efficient and Nancy Pei – excellent research skills and attention to detail, excellent grasp of whole environment’

‘Excellent, pragmatic and business oriented legal advice. Always on top of things.’

‘Graham Hood (one of our global top 3 attorneys).’

‘The intellectual property team at Smart & Biggar has excellent knowledge in both areas of biotechnology and the law. The team recently assisted me in a patent litigation. Both of the partners that I worked with were knowledgeable in the area of science and law, and it was great to be working with two partners who were both women. They also supported us using a smaller nimble team, allowing their associates to do much of the work, and then appropriately supporting at the strategic higher level when needed. They worked together with us to submit bills through a new platform that we implemented and also provided clear visibility in terms of expected costs.’

‘I would highlight two stand-out partners, Yoon Kang and Urszula Wojytra. From the start of the project, Yoon Kang was extremely responsive and available to talk through strategy. She answered many questions that I had regarding Canadian patent litigation and regulatory issues. Both she and Urszula Wojytra are highly knowledgeable in their area, smart intellectual property lawyers, have a vast amount of experience, and are also nice and easy individuals to work with. They provided realistic prospects and clear line of sight. They also helped us to consider all options, including settlement, and ultimately supported us through that as well.’

Key clients

Rogers Media Inc.|Rogers Communications Inc.|BCE Inc.|Bell Media Inc.|CTV Specialty Television Enterprises Inc.|The Sports Network Inc.|Le Reseau des Sports (RDS) Inc.|Groupe TVA Inc.

Angelcare|Edgewell Personal Care|Playtex Products

Vidéotron Ltée|Groupe TVA Inc.

Bell Media Inc.|Groupe TVA Inc. |Rogers Media Inc.

Tekna Plasma Systems Inc.

Dow Chemical

Mud Engineering Inc.

Pampered Chef

Grupo Bimbo



Cosmetic Warriors/Lush

Work highlights

  • Provided representation in Nova Chemicals Corporation v Dow Chemicals Company as the Federal Court of Appeal affirmed Federal Court’s decision awarding Dow $650 million in patent infringement matter brought against Nova Chemical, the largest reported patent infringement award, and including an award in respect of post patent expiry springboard sales.
  • Acted in Loblaws Inc v Columbia Insurance Company where the Federal Court of Appeal upheld a successful trial decision of the Federal Court relating to Pampered Chef’s use of its PC logo, and alleged infringement of Loblaws’ PC trademark.
  • Acted in Rogers Media Inc. et al. v. John Doe, a case where the Plaintiffs, who own the broadcasting rights to all National Hockey League (NHL) game content in Canada, filed a motion seeking a site-blocking Order that would order Canada’s major ISPs to block access to unauthorised online sources that illegally distribute NHL content on the Internet.

Canada > Cannabis Tier 4

The practice at Smart & Biggar is a one-stop-shop for all cannabis related matters. The practice often advises clients on regulatory issues, brand protection, marketing, advertising, IP strategy, licensing and plant breeder’s rights and is led by life sciences expert, Alice Tseng; her specialisms include regulatory, marketing and advertising matters within pharmaceutical, cannabis and medical device industries.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Yoon Kang; Kwan Loh


‘Kwan Loh offers excellent service with special expertise and insight.’

Work highlights

    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 50 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 eight 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.

    Managing Director Matthew
    Life Sciences (Patents & Regulatory Compliance) Daphne
    Patents (Electrical & Mechanical) Elliott
    Trademarks Kohji
    IP Litigation Sheldon
    IP Strategy François
    Number of Partners (Lawyers) : 36
    Number of Partners (Patent Agents) : 9