W. Brad Hanna, FCIArb. 

Co-Chair, Dispute Resolution, Franchising & Distribution, International Arbitration
Toronto  t: 416.865.7276  |  e: brad.hanna@mcmillan.ca

W. Brad Hanna, FCIArb.

Toronto
Brookfield Place, Suite 4400
181 Bay Street
Toronto, Ontario M5J 2T3

t: 416.865.7276
e: brad.hanna@mcmillan.ca

overview

Brad is the Co-Chair of the firm's Dispute Resolution, Franchising & Distribution, and International Arbitration Groups.

Brad has represented clients before all levels of courts in Canada, including the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as before domestic and international arbitration tribunals.

Brad's practice primarily consists of complex corporate commercial litigation. He has extensive experience in handling franchise and distributorship disputes, intellectual property disputes, internet disputes, commercial fraud, environmental litigation and a wide range of contractual and business relationship disputes. In addition to Canadian clients, he routinely represents American and other foreign entities that are parties to disputes in Canada.

Brad routinely advises and represents foreign and domestic manufacturers who are terminating relationships with distributors and franchisees. He has handled hundreds of termination disputes, including those involving claims of wrongful termination, breach of contract, bad faith, fraud, misrepresentation, intellectual property infringement, breach of non-compete and confidentiality covenants, licensing issues and competition law. Brad has represented numerous automotive clients in this context, including Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, and Subaru. Brad has also defended several automotive manufacturers, food manufacturers, clothing manufacturers, petroleum suppliers and a national grocer against alleged breaches of franchise legislation, including rescission and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing claims.


Brad has acted in numerous internet-related cases, including cases involving ICANN, "cybersquatting", internet defamation and other violations of intellectual property. He represents clients in trade-mark and copyright disputes and cases involving misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information.

His corporate fraud practice encompasses all forms of crimes against the company committed by corporate representatives and unrelated parties. With respect to environmental law, Brad's practice includes representing both plaintiffs and defendants in civil environmental actions and he also regularly defends corporations who have been charged under a variety of environmental statutes and other regulatory laws. He has class action experience in defending cases involving breach of contract and fiduciary duties, misrepresentation and patents.

Brad also has extensive experience in alternative dispute resolution techniques. He is a Fellow and member of the Executive Committee of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb.) and routinely acts as counsel in private and court-annexed mediations, international and domestic commercial arbitrations and NADAP proceedings.

Representative Matters

Recent matters include:

  • Representing Miller Brewing Company in a dispute with Molson regarding a Canadian license agreement;
  • Representing Mitsubishi Canada in dealer termination litigation;
  • Represented Johnson Controls in a corporate fraud case brought against several parties by Windsor Casino;
  • Represented GlaxoSmithKline in a patent "evergreening" class action;
  • Represented Magna Companies in an international arbitration involving a joint venture dispute;
  • Representing Sobeys in a franchise termination dispute; and
  • Representing Subaru in dealer termination and intellectual property disputes.
     

Presentations

Let's Be Honest: The New Canadian Duty of Honesty in Contractual Performance

Publications

Five Key Takeaways from the 18th Annual Franchise Law Conference
A Word of Warning to Franchisors – ADR Provisions May Postpone the Limitation Period for Rescission
No Injunction For You – Recent Victory for Franchisors Seeking to Terminate Franchise Agreements
SCC Says Judges Have No Business Reviewing Decisions of Voluntary Associations
Ontario Court of Appeal Finds for Franchisors: Imperfect Disclosure is Not Equivalent to No Disclosure
Changes to Ontario's Franchise Legislation: Bill 154 Receives Royal Assent
Changes to Ontario's Franchise Legislation Are Underway
Release Me: Ontario Court of Appeal Clarifies When Franchisors Can Enforce Releases
Ontario Court of Appeal to Franchisors: "Comply with your disclosure requirements, or else..."
Changing Workplaces Review Final Report – Who Must Bargain with Franchise Employees?
New Act Modernizes Ontario's International Arbitration Regime
If Your Dealer Agreement Permits you to Terminate "Immediately" for Breach, Do So Promptly or Risk Paying Damages for Breach of Contract
Franchise Legislation has Arrived in British Columbia
A Good Liability Exclusion Clause Can Protect You From A Bad Termination Of Contract
From Franchisor to Joint Employer – Update on Potentially Increasing Liabilities of Franchisors for the Employees of their Franchisees
Big Changes Coming to Canadian Franchise Legislation
Franchise Legislation is Coming to British Columbia
Restructuring a Franchise in Crisis: Court Dismisses Former Dealers' Class Action Against General Motors
Let's Be Honest: The New Duty of Good Faith in Contractual Performance
The Essential Guide to Settlement in Canada
dealing with the duty of good faith and fair dealing in franchise agreements
Dramatic expansion of liability for franchisors in Canada – The duty to promote and enhance your brand
A "fresh" approach to summary judgment: The Ontario Court of Appeal creates new "full appreciation" test
No franchise disclosure document required: Ontario Court of Appeal considers the one-year term/no franchise fee exemption
International commercial arbitration awards – No deference on questions of jurisdiction
Ontario Court Keeps Lawsuit in Court Despite Arbitration Agreement
Developers and Builders: Make Sure You Get Noticed!
Show Me the Money: Security for Costs in Commercial Arbitrations
Be Careful What You Wish for: Arbitration Clauses Can Come Back to Haunt You
Ontario Court of Appeal Clears the Way for Arbitration of Franchise Disputes
Good Faith is a Two Way Street
WHOIS bashing your company online?
How have recent legal decisions affected franchisees and franchisors when it comes to disclosure?
Ontario Court Sends Message to Franchisors and Franchisees
Back to Fundamentals: Terminating Distributors for 'Fundamental Breach' of Contract
A Guide to Arbitration In Canada
Obstructing Justice? The Duty to Provide Information When Reporting A Spill Under The Environmental Protection Act
Canada's Highest Court Punishes Manufacturers
Kerr v. Danier Leather ups the ante for class action defendants
Costly Class Action Costs Awards: 'Legal Premiums' Raise The Bar In Ontario
Is Your Distribution or Licensing Relationship a 'Franchise' Business?
The Answer Might Surprise You
Challenges in Distribution: Terminating Dealers and Distributors
Wannabe Franchisees Are Entitled To Protection Under The Franchise Act
Does Your Company or Product 'Suck'? What You Can Do if Someone Says It Does
Searching for the Right Response: What to do When you are Presented with a Search Warrant?

News

McMillan LLP recognized in the 2019 Benchmark Litigation Canada Guide
McMillan lawyers well-represented in the 2017 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
McMillan lawyers well-represented in the 2016 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
McMillan lawyers are well represented in the 2015 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
Brad Hanna discusses the Supreme Court ruling on doctor-assisted suicide with BNN
The Legal 500 Canada 2015 recognizes 16 McMillan lawyers
McMillan lawyers are well represented in the 2014 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
McMillan lawyers publish The Essential Guide to Settlement in Canada

Education

  • University of Ottawa, LLB (graduated Dean's List, magna cum laude) - 1993
  • University of Waterloo, Honours Environmental Studies (graduated Dean's List, Top of Class) - 1989

Year Of Call

  • Called to the Ontario bar - 1994

Practices

litigation
business litigation
fraud law
intellectual property litigation
arbitration
defamation and libel
appellate advocacy
franchise and distribution
franchising and distribution disputes
class actions

Industries

food, beverage and agribusiness
automotive manufacturers and distributors
dealerships
suppliers
franchising and distribution

Directorships and Professional Associations

  • Canadian Franchise Association Legal & Legislative Affairs Committee
  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb)
  • Member of the Executive Committee of the CIArb
  • Founding Member of the Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society and Member of its Liaison Committee
  • Canadian Bar Association (Ontario)
  • American Bar Association (Civil Litigation)
  • Advocates' Society
  • Metropolitan Toronto Lawyers Association

Teaching Engagements

  • Professor Adjunct at Osgoode Hall Law School teaching a course on mediation and arbitration (2004-2007);
  • Professor Adjunct at Queen's Law School teaching a course on mediation and arbitration (1998-2004); and
  • Lectures for LSUC and the Advocates' Society on a variety of civil litigation and arbitration topics, including Evidence in Arbitrations and Summary Judgment.

Awards & Rankings

  • Recognized in the 2019 Benchmark Litigation Canada Guide as Litigation Star
  • Recognized in the 2018 Benchmark Litigation Canada Guide as Litigation Star
  • Acritas Star- independently rated lawyer
  • Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2017 repeatedly recommends Brad in the are of Litigation - Corporate Commercial
  • Recognized in the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2016 as a leading lawyer in the area of Litigation - Corporate Commercial
  • Ranked in The Legal 500 Canada 2015 as a leader in the area of Dispute Resolution
  • Benchmark Canada ranks Brad as a "Litigation Star" for commercial litigation, arbitration and intellectual property disputes
  • Global Arbitration Review includes Brad as a "Lawyer to Know" in its GAR 100 Guide
  • Received both entrance and senior year scholarships at the University of Waterloo based on academic performance
  • Award for attaining the highest grade in Constitutional Law at the University of Ottawa
  • Advocates' Society award for attaining the highest grade in the Administrative Law component of the Bar Admissions Course
  • 2002 Leadership in Mentoring Award
vcard

Brad is the Co-Chair of the firm's Dispute Resolution, Franchising & Distribution, and International Arbitration Groups.

Brad has represented clients before all levels of courts in Canada, including the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as before domestic and international arbitration tribunals.

Brad's practice primarily consists of complex corporate commercial litigation. He has extensive experience in handling franchise and distributorship disputes, intellectual property disputes, internet disputes, commercial fraud, environmental litigation and a wide range of contractual and business relationship disputes. In addition to Canadian clients, he routinely represents American and other foreign entities that are parties to disputes in Canada.

Brad routinely advises and represents foreign and domestic manufacturers who are terminating relationships with distributors and franchisees. He has handled hundreds of termination disputes, including those involving claims of wrongful termination, breach of contract, bad faith, fraud, misrepresentation, intellectual property infringement, breach of non-compete and confidentiality covenants, licensing issues and competition law. Brad has represented numerous automotive clients in this context, including Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, and Subaru. Brad has also defended several automotive manufacturers, food manufacturers, clothing manufacturers, petroleum suppliers and a national grocer against alleged breaches of franchise legislation, including rescission and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing claims.


Brad has acted in numerous internet-related cases, including cases involving ICANN, "cybersquatting", internet defamation and other violations of intellectual property. He represents clients in trade-mark and copyright disputes and cases involving misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information.

His corporate fraud practice encompasses all forms of crimes against the company committed by corporate representatives and unrelated parties. With respect to environmental law, Brad's practice includes representing both plaintiffs and defendants in civil environmental actions and he also regularly defends corporations who have been charged under a variety of environmental statutes and other regulatory laws. He has class action experience in defending cases involving breach of contract and fiduciary duties, misrepresentation and patents.

Brad also has extensive experience in alternative dispute resolution techniques. He is a Fellow and member of the Executive Committee of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb.) and routinely acts as counsel in private and court-annexed mediations, international and domestic commercial arbitrations and NADAP proceedings.

Recent matters include:

  • Representing Miller Brewing Company in a dispute with Molson regarding a Canadian license agreement;
  • Representing Mitsubishi Canada in dealer termination litigation;
  • Represented Johnson Controls in a corporate fraud case brought against several parties by Windsor Casino;
  • Represented GlaxoSmithKline in a patent "evergreening" class action;
  • Represented Magna Companies in an international arbitration involving a joint venture dispute;
  • Representing Sobeys in a franchise termination dispute; and
  • Representing Subaru in dealer termination and intellectual property disputes.
     
December 2018
Five Key Takeaways from the 18th Annual Franchise Law Conference

Franchise and Distribution Bulletin

June 2018
SCC Says Judges Have No Business Reviewing Decisions of Voluntary Associations

Litigation and Administrative Law Bulletin

February 2018
Ontario Court of Appeal Finds for Franchisors: Imperfect Disclosure is Not Equivalent to No Disclosure

Franchise & Distribution Bulletin; Litigation Bulletin; Business Litigation Bulletin

November 2017
Changes to Ontario's Franchise Legislation: Bill 154 Receives Royal Assent

Litigation, Business Litigation, and
Franchise & Distribution Bulletin

October 2017
Changes to Ontario's Franchise Legislation Are Underway

Business Litigation Bulletin

May 2017
Changing Workplaces Review Final Report – Who Must Bargain with Franchise Employees?

Business Law, Labour and Employment, Franchising and Distribution Bulletin

November 2015
Franchise Legislation is Coming to British Columbia
Franchise Bulletin
January 2015
Let's Be Honest, eh: The New Canadian Duty of Honesty in Contractual Performance
Deal Points, Winter 2015 (Volume XX, Issue 1)
December 2013
The Essential Guide to Settlement in Canada
LexisNexis Canada
October 2013
dealing with the duty of good faith and fair dealing in franchise agreements
franchising and distribution bulletin
February 2010
Developers and Builders: Make Sure You Get Noticed!
Litigation and Commercial Real Estate Bulletin
October 2009
Be Careful What You Wish for: Arbitration Clauses Can Come Back to Haunt You
Litigation and Arbitration Bulletin
October 2008
Good Faith is a Two Way Street
Litigation Bulletin
June 2008
WHOIS bashing your company online?
Litigation Bulletin
April 2006
A Guide to Arbitration In Canada
(co-author) with Leonard Ricchetti and Brad Hanna of McMillan LLP
November 2005
Canada's Highest Court Punishes Manufacturers
Litigation Bulletin
June 24, 2005
Kerr v. Danier Leather ups the ante for class action defendants
The Lawyers Weekly, June 24, 2005
January 2005
Is Your Distribution or Licensing Relationship a 'Franchise' Business?
The Answer Might Surprise You
Litigation and Distribution and Franchise Law Bulletin
September 2004
Challenges in Distribution: Terminating Dealers and Distributors
Corporate and Commercial and Litigation Bulletin
January 2015
Let's Be Honest: The New Canadian Duty of Honesty in Contractual Performance
McMillan Webinar