William A. Rowlands 

Co-Chair, Leasing
Toronto  t: 416.307.4065  |  e: william.rowlands@mcmillan.ca

William A. Rowlands

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

t: 416.307.4065
e: william.rowlands@mcmillan.ca

overview

William (Bill) Rowlands is a partner in the Real Estate Law Group in the Toronto office. He has been a partner with the firm since 1988.

Bill is a recognized leader in commercial leasing. His practice involves a full spectrum of commercial real estate transactions including leasing, acquisitions and dispositions of property. Bill represents participants on all sides of real estate transactions, including property owners and managers, landlords and tenants, purchaser and vendors.

His professional activities include:

  • Co-Chair of the Law Society of Upper Canada annual Six-Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer Program
  • Editor for O'Brien's Encyclopedia of Forms, Division IV, Leases, Canada Law Book, 2002, updated annually, a major Canadian legal resource book on leases

Bill also speaks at various business and professional conferences on topics related to retail, industrial and commercial leasing. He also served as resource counsel on the lease committee of Realpac (Real Property Association of Canada), a leading Canadian real estate organization.

Representative Matters

  • Acted for subsidiary of Brookfield Office Properties in connection with the lease to Deloitte Management Services LP, as lead tenant, of approximately 420,000 square feet of the new 44-storey Bay Adelaide East office tower.
  • Acted for Manulife Real Estate in the purchase of the office building complex known as York Mills Centre from Ivanhoe Cambridge.
  • Acted for Manulife Real Estate in a forward purchase and sale arrangement with Broccolini Construction and Canderel Management in respect of Manulife's purchase of the new Export Development Canada headquarters.
  • Acted for BMO Bank of Montreal in an agreement with a subsidiary of First Gulf Corporation and Sun Life Financial to be the anchor tenant in a LEED-certified office building, First Meadowvale Corporate Centre in Meadowvale.
  • Acted for a major Canadian landlord in related leasing transactions with a major tenant at numerous locations across the county.
  • Acts for a number of retailers in connection with their leasing and property matters including a financial institution, a petroleum retailer, a major electronics retailer and a major home furnishings retailer.
  • Is retained on an ongoing basis by a number of landlords in connection with office, retail and industrial leasing.

Presentations

Workshop Leader
Please Release Me: The Importance of Fitting the Release and Indemnity Pieces Seamlessly with Insurance
Implications of Development Activity on Existing Assets Including Demolition and No Build Clauses (Rapid Legal Roundtable)
Panelist
Professionalism and Ethics in a Commercial Leasing Practice
Good Faith and Other Recent Case Law
Workshop Leader
Legal, Technical & Financial Issues That Can Arise During the Term of the Lease
Roundtable Leader
Recent Case Law, Implications for Leasing
Legal Conflicts
The Increasing Use of RFPs
Executive Update for Owners and Tenants
Conflicts of Interest
Assignment, Subletting
Law For Non-Lawyers
Conduct Unbecoming - the Doctrine of Estoppel and Estoppel Certificates
Negotiating and Amending Key Lease Terms
Key Leasing Trends and Issues in Today's Retail Market
Knowledge, Actual Knowledge, The Best Of Your Knowledge - A Little Knowledge Can Be A Dangerous Thing
Green Leases, Carbon Credits & Shared Environmental Objectives: How are they changing lease terms and negotiations?
The Turning Tide – Defaults and Remedies
All Steamed-Up About Boiler Plate: Drafting to Avoid Pitfalls
Bankruptcy Update for the Coming Recession
Commercial Real Estate Leases
Older Buildings: Special Issues
What U.S. and Foreign Parent Companies are Demanding in Leases for Their Canadian Operations
Pad Site Leases - Special Concerns and Issues
Are Gross and Semi-Gross Leases Coming Back in the Office Market
Renewals and Extensions
The Shortest Possible Lease: The Venerable Dye & Durham 650
Risk Management, Insurance and Environmental Benchmarks in Leasing
It's No Use - Setting Boundaries in the Use Clause
The Annotated Retail Lease
Strategies, Issues, Trends and Practices in Office, Retail and Industrial Leasing, The Use of a Standard Office Lease: Will it Ever Happen?
Remastering Your Lease Masters
Creating the Standard Office Lease - CIPPREC's Attempt
Ten Common Pitfalls in Commercial Leasing
Documenting the Lease Deal

Publications

Enforcing an Offer to Lease – Essential Elements and No Fundamental Breach
The Timely Exercise of Lease Renewal Rights
Fundamental Breach of Commercial Leases
Drafting, Exercising and Protecting Lease Renewal Rights
A Lease Estoppel Certificate Constituting the Exercise of a Renewal Right
Being Precise in Exercising Renewal Rights
Waivers of subrogation in leases – the latest chapter
The overholding provision in a commercial lease
Charging management fees or administration fees to tenants under a net or carefree lease
Grappling with Insurance Clauses
Partnerships and Trusts Handle with Care
Subleases: Seeking the Landlord's Consent
Tenant Transfers: Navigating the World of Subleasing, Assignment and Lease Takeovers
Estoppel: Losing Your Contractual Rights
Special Risks of Being a Subtenant (and Some Suggestions to Mitigate These)
Agreements to Lease, Letters of Intent and Term Sheets
Precedent Offer to Lease and Precedent Shopping Centre Lease
Toronto Land Transfer Tax
Drafting and Protecting Renewal Rights
Retail Out-Parcel Leases
Requirements for a Binding Agreement to Lease
Commercial Leases: What's the "Use"?
Fixed CAM/Gross Leases – An Emerging Trend?
Lease Guarantees: An Update
Tenant Obligations on Leaving a Leased Property
What's the Use? Overlapping Retail Uses
Creating the CIPPREC National Standard Office Lease

News

71 McMillan Lawyers Named in the 2020 Edition of Best Lawyers in Canada
60 McMillan Lawyers Recognized in the 2019 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
32 McMillan lawyers recognized in Who's Who Legal Canada 2018
65 McMillan Lawyers Named in the 2019 Edition of Best Lawyers in Canada
McMillan lawyers well-represented in the 2018 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
33 McMillan lawyers recognized in Who's Who Legal Canada 2017
Margaret McNee recognized as Mutual Funds Lawyer of the Year, along with 58 McMillan Lawyers in the 2018 Best Lawyers in Canada Report
McMillan lawyers well-represented in the 2017 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
McMillan lawyers recognized in Who's Who Legal: Canada 2016
McMillan lawyers well-represented in the 2016 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
60 McMillan lawyers recognized in the 10th Edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada
McMillan lawyers are well represented in the 2015 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
McMillan lawyers recognized in the 2015 Best Lawyers in Canada
McMillan lawyers are well represented in the 2014 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
49 McMillan lawyers recognized in the 2014 Best Lawyers in Canada
Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2013 Recognizes 44 McMillan Leading Practitioners
Ten McMillan lawyers listed in the 2013 Lexpert®/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada
47 McMillan lawyers recognized in the 2013 Best Lawyers in Canada
Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2012 Recognizes 39 McMillan Leading Practitioners
Eight McMillan lawyers featured in the 2012 LEXPERT/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada
50 McMillan Lawyers recognized in the 2012 Best Lawyers in Canada
Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2011 recognizes 35 McMillan leading practitioners
William Rowlands discusses the issues with subleasing in a Canadian Property Management V-Report

Education

  • Queen's University, LLB - 1982

Year Of Call

  • Called to the Ontario bar - 1984

Practices

commercial real estate
leasing
real estate acquisitions and divestitures
real estate financing
environmental regulation

Industries

commercial real estate
retail
banking
service industries

Directorships and Professional Associations

  • International Council of Shopping Centres

Awards & Rankings

  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada (2020) as a leading lawyer in the area of Real Estate Law
  • Recognized in the 2019 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a Consistently Recommended lawyer in the area of Property Leasing
  • Recognized in the 2018 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a Consistently Recommended lawyer in the area of Property Leasing
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in Canada 2011 - 2019 as a leader in Real Estate Law
  • Received 2017 DistinguishedTM Rating from Martindale-Hubbell
  • Listed in Who's Who Legal: Canada 2016 - 2018 as a leader in Real Estate Law
  • Listed in the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2010 - 2017 as a leading practitioner in Property Leasing
vcard

William (Bill) Rowlands is a partner in the Real Estate Law Group in the Toronto office. He has been a partner with the firm since 1988.

Bill is a recognized leader in commercial leasing. His practice involves a full spectrum of commercial real estate transactions including leasing, acquisitions and dispositions of property. Bill represents participants on all sides of real estate transactions, including property owners and managers, landlords and tenants, purchaser and vendors.

His professional activities include:

  • Co-Chair of the Law Society of Upper Canada annual Six-Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer Program
  • Editor for O'Brien's Encyclopedia of Forms, Division IV, Leases, Canada Law Book, 2002, updated annually, a major Canadian legal resource book on leases

Bill also speaks at various business and professional conferences on topics related to retail, industrial and commercial leasing. He also served as resource counsel on the lease committee of Realpac (Real Property Association of Canada), a leading Canadian real estate organization.

  • Acted for subsidiary of Brookfield Office Properties in connection with the lease to Deloitte Management Services LP, as lead tenant, of approximately 420,000 square feet of the new 44-storey Bay Adelaide East office tower.
  • Acted for Manulife Real Estate in the purchase of the office building complex known as York Mills Centre from Ivanhoe Cambridge.
  • Acted for Manulife Real Estate in a forward purchase and sale arrangement with Broccolini Construction and Canderel Management in respect of Manulife's purchase of the new Export Development Canada headquarters.
  • Acted for BMO Bank of Montreal in an agreement with a subsidiary of First Gulf Corporation and Sun Life Financial to be the anchor tenant in a LEED-certified office building, First Meadowvale Corporate Centre in Meadowvale.
  • Acted for a major Canadian landlord in related leasing transactions with a major tenant at numerous locations across the county.
  • Acts for a number of retailers in connection with their leasing and property matters including a financial institution, a petroleum retailer, a major electronics retailer and a major home furnishings retailer.
  • Is retained on an ongoing basis by a number of landlords in connection with office, retail and industrial leasing.
February 2017
The Timely Exercise of Lease Renewal Rights

Real Estate Bulletin

September 2016
Fundamental Breach of Commercial Leases

Real Estate Bulletin

October 2013
Being Precise in Exercising Renewal Rights
Real Estate Bulletin
February 2013
Waivers of subrogation in leases – the latest chapter
Real Estate Bulletin
February 2013
The overholding provision in a commercial lease
Real Estate Bulletin
May 15, 2011
Grappling with Insurance Clauses
Advanced Conference on Negotiating and Enforcing Leases, Canadian Institute
February 24, 2011
Partnerships and Trusts Handle with Care
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference
November 2010
Subleases: Seeking the Landlord's Consent
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Fall 2010
September 23, 2010
Tenant Transfers: Navigating the World of Subleasing, Assignment and Lease Takeovers
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
September 2010
Estoppel: Losing Your Contractual Rights
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Spring 2010
February 28, 2009
Special Risks of Being a Subtenant (and Some Suggestions to Mitigate These)
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Winter 2009
2008
Agreements to Lease, Letters of Intent and Term Sheets
Shopping Centre Leases, Canada Law Book
2008
Precedent Offer to Lease and Precedent Shopping Centre Lease
Shopping Centre Leases, Canada Law Book, 2008
December 2007
Toronto Land Transfer Tax
Real Estate Alert
November 16, 2007
Drafting and Protecting Renewal Rights
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Summer 2007
April 2006
Retail Out-Parcel Leases
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief April 2006
April 2006
Requirements for a Binding Agreement to Lease
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief April 2006
Fall 2005
Commercial Leases: What's the "Use"?
Lang Michener LLP InBrief Fall 2005
Fall 2005
Fixed CAM/Gross Leases – An Emerging Trend?
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Fall 2005
March 2005
Lease Guarantees: An Update
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Winter 2005. Reprinted in Ontario Real Estate Law Developments, CCH, March 2005.
Spring 2005
Tenant Obligations on Leaving a Leased Property
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief Spring 2005
November 2004
What's the Use? Overlapping Retail Uses

Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief November 2004

April 2003
Creating the CIPPREC National Standard Office Lease
Lang Michener LLP Real Estate Brief April 2003
April 27, 2017
Workshop Leader
Please Release Me: The Importance of Fitting the Release and Indemnity Pieces Seamlessly with Insurance
International Conference of Shopping Centres Law Conference, Toronto, Ontario
October 6, 2016
Implications of Development Activity on Existing Assets Including Demolition and No Build Clauses (Rapid Legal Roundtable)
The Real Estate Strategy & Leasing Conference, Toronto, Ontario
April 21, 2016
Panelist
Professionalism and Ethics in a Commercial Leasing Practice
International Conference of Shopping Centres Law Conference, Toronto, Ontario
September 30, 2015
Good Faith and Other Recent Case Law
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Ontario
April 14, 2015
Workshop Leader
Bankers & Lenders: Friends with Benefits
International Conference of Shopping Centres Law Conference, Toronto, Ontario
October 7, 2014
Legal, Technical & Financial Issues That Can Arise During the Term of the Lease
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto
March 24, 2014
Roundtable Leader
International Conference of Shopping Centres Law Conference, Toronto, Ontario
October 2013
Recent Case Law, Implications for Leasing
Panelist, RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Ontario
February 21, 2013
Legal Conflicts
Speaker, International Conference of Shopping Centres Law Conference, Toronto, Ontario
October 4, 2012
The Increasing Use of RFPs
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto
April 4, 2012
Executive Update for Owners and Tenants
Green Leasing Conference, Toronto
February 23, 2012
Conflicts of Interest
Speaker, Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference
September 27, 2011
Assignment, Subletting
Panelist, RealLeasing Conference, Toronto
May 2, 2010
Law For Non-Lawyers
International Council of Shopping Centres Educational Seminar
February 25, 2010
Conduct Unbecoming - the Doctrine of Estoppel and Estoppel Certificates
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference
September 22, 2009
Negotiating and Amending Key Lease Terms
Practicing Commercial Real Estate in a Changing Environment, Osgoode Hall Law School Professional Development, Toronto, Ontario
September 17, 2009
Key Leasing Trends and Issues in Today's Retail Market
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
March 5, 2009
Knowledge, Actual Knowledge, The Best Of Your Knowledge - A Little Knowledge Can Be A Dangerous Thing
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference
September 18, 2008
Green Leases, Carbon Credits & Shared Environmental Objectives: How are they changing lease terms and negotiations?
2008 RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
May 28, 2008
The Turning Tide – Defaults and Remedies
Basic Commercial Leases, Lorman Education Services
March 6, 2008
All Steamed-Up About Boiler Plate: Drafting to Avoid Pitfalls
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference
February 13, 2008
Bankruptcy Update for the Coming Recession
Six Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer, presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada, Toronto, Canada
March 26, 2007
Commercial Real Estate Leases
Federated Press Course, Toronto, Canada
February 21, 2007
Older Buildings: Special Issues
Six Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer, presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada, Toronto, Canada
October 3, 2006
What U.S. and Foreign Parent Companies are Demanding in Leases for Their Canadian Operations
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
February 15, 2006
Pad Site Leases - Special Concerns and Issues
Six Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer, presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada, Toronto, Canada
September 29, 2005
Are Gross and Semi-Gross Leases Coming Back in the Office Market
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
March 3, 2005
Renewals and Extensions
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference, presented by the International Council of Shopping Centers, Toronto, Canada
February 16, 2005
The Shortest Possible Lease: The Venerable Dye & Durham 650
Six Minute Commercial Leasing Lawyer, presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada, Toronto, Canada
October 5, 2004
Risk Management, Insurance and Environmental Benchmarks in Leasing
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
March 4, 2004
It's No Use - Setting Boundaries in the Use Clause
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference, presented by the International Council of Shopping Centers, Toronto, Canada
January 22, 2004
The Annotated Retail Lease
Law Society of Upper Canada, Toronto, Canada
September 23, 2003
Strategies, Issues, Trends and Practices in Office, Retail and Industrial Leasing, The Use of a Standard Office Lease: Will it Ever Happen?
RealLeasing Conference, Toronto, Canada
March 2003
Remastering Your Lease Masters
Canadian Shopping Centre Law Conference, presented by the International Council of Shopping Centers, Toronto, Canada
February 2003
Creating the Standard Office Lease - CIPPREC's Attempt
Return of the Six Minute Leasing Lawyer, presented by the Law Society of Upper Canada
October 30, 2002
Ten Common Pitfalls in Commercial Leasing
Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) Institute
April 17, 2002
Documenting the Lease Deal
Negotiating Leases – Security and Other Risks, Federated Press