Canada

Reviews

Practice area

World Tax Reviews

Tax
Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie offers services in tax planning and transactional tax, tax controversy, transfer pricing, indirect tax and global wealth management. The firm acts for many of the world's largest multinationals, offering them legal advice on a range of business issues.

A key member in the firm's tax practice is Jacques Bernier. Bernier's practice focuses on tax litigation and representations before the Canadian tax authorities at the federal and provincial levels.

Blake Cassels & Graydon

Blake Cassels & Graydon is a leading firm in the Canadian market. Its tax practice is led by Jeffrey Trossman and comprises 29 partners and 15 other fee earners. 

The firm's core practice is corporate income tax advice. It has also acted as counsel in tax planning and tax dispute matters. The firm also advises on customs matters, including HST/GST/QST and other sales taxes. 

On the dispute front, the firm assists clients in all aspects of the audit and appeal process, including audit management. Further, it has advised on domestic and foreign requirements in relation to the preparation of notices of objection and in negotiations with the appeals branch of Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

During the research period the firm advised TransCanada Corporation in relation to its acquisition of all of the outstanding shares of Columbia Pipeline Group worth approximately $13 billion. It also acted for Trilogy International Partners on the tax aspects of its $875 million business combination with Alignvest Acquisition Corporation.

Borden Ladner Gervais

Borden Ladner Gervais's tax group has strong expertise in each of its five offices across Canada. The firm provides tax services in industries such as energy, mining and oil and gas.

The tax group is well-known for providing strategic tax advice, innovative planning, efficient tax structures and comprehensive risk assessments to national and international clients. The firm also advises on tax transactional matters related to M&A, private equity, inbound investments, public offerings and tax litigation.

Lindsay Holmes is the national leader of the tax group. Holmes's practice focuses on providing advice on income tax matters, including M&A and the structuring of joint ventures and partnerships.

Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg

John Ulmer, Ian Crosbie and Brian Bloom co-head Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg's tax practice. Its tax group has 20 partners, 11 based in Toronto and nine in Montréal. Guy Du Pont heads the firm's tax litigation practice and has represented clients at the Supreme Court of Canada in more than 30 instances.

The firm is one of Canada’s leading corporate firms so it is no surprise that it has an impressive practice in transactional tax.

The firm has had an impressive run of cases during the research period. In the healthcare and logistics sectors, it has acted for McKesson Corporation in connection with the tax aspects of its $3 billion acquisition of Rexall and Rexall Pharma Plus from Katz Group. Furthermore, it has advised Air Canada in structuring the first Canadian enhanced equipment trust certificate, permitting Air Canada to efficiently finance the acquisition of aircraft valued at over $900 million. It also acted for HP in the electronics sector in connection with its $1.05 billion acquisition of the printer business of Samsung Electronics.

The firm's tax litigation team is also well respected and has acted on a variety of matters before the courts.

Deloitte

Clifford Rand is the national managing partner for professional services firm Deloitte's tax practice. The firm provides a broad range of services including corporate tax, assurance and advisory, risk management, financial advisory and consulting. Its Canadian practice has offices in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Montréal.

The firm’s tax lawyers have extensive experience in tax controversy and tax litigation. Rand specialises in the management of large, complex audits and rectifying compliance and taxation issues.

EY

Alycia Calvert oversees the tax practice at EY. The firm offers services in business tax consulting, compliance and reporting, international tax law, transfer pricing, indirect taxes and controversy. Calvert herself is experienced in the structuring of royalty trusts and income funds, acquisitions of Canadian public and private corporations as well as post-acquisition restructuring.

Goodmans

Goodmans' transactional tax practice provides advice in relation to M&A, corporate finance and restructuring transactions.

The tax team at Goodmans comprises seven partners and four other professionals, including practice lead Carrie Smit.

The wider firm's core practice is in M&A and this is shown in its work acting on the tax aspects of public and private deals. In the past year, the firm's most significant M&A transactions have included advising Spectra Energy in its merger with Enbridge. The transaction marks the largest foreign takeover by a Canadian company and the largest takeover of a US energy company by a Canadian company. Furthermore, it has advised Vista Equity Partners on its acquisition of DH Corporation and Vista's merger of DH with its portfolio company, which will create the third largest financial services technology company in the world.

KPMG

Greg Wiebe is the managing partner of KPMG's tax practice. The firm has the largest tax practice in Canada with over 6000 professionals, 226 of which are partners. Its tax group has expertise in international tax, transfer pricing, indirect tax, global mobility services, disputes and controversy, tax incentives, US corporate tax, M&A and tax management consulting.

KPMG serves many of Canada's largest public and private companies. Specific sectors include financial services, real estate, mining, oil and gas, digital tax and public sector taxation.

McCarthy Tétrault

Patrick McCay is the national practice group leader at McCarthy Tétrault. Its tax team comprises 18 partners, nine associates and two of counsel. Among these are Nicole Platanitis and Justin Shoemaker, who joined the firm in 2016 and Jeremy Ho, who joined in 2017.

The firm advises on the tax aspects of finance matters, M&A, reorganisations, REITS and cross-border transactions. Its team of lawyers are situated in each of the four principle business cities in Canada: Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montréal.

The firm's lawyers have also provided recommendations to the Department of Finance on legislative amendments to Canada's tax laws.

McMillan

Michael Friedman oversees the tax practice at McMillan. The firm advises clients at every stage of the tax dispute resolution process, from voluntary disclosures and audits through to administrative appeals and court challenges. The team also resolves tax disputes with Canada's federal and provincial revenue authorities.

During the research period the firm represented Catalyst Capital Group in the restructuring of Pacific Exploration and Production Corporation, the largest independent oil producer in Colombia. This restructuring is among the top five largest oil and gas restructurings in history. 

It also provided counsel to Williams Companies and Williams Partners on the tax aspects relating to the sale of their Canadian natural gas businesses to Inter Pipeline.

Osler Hoskin & Harcourt

Monica Biringer and Firoz Ahmed co-chair Osler Hoskin & Harcourt's national tax practice. The firm has offices in Toronto, Montréal, Calgary, Ottawa, Vancouver and New York and is able to assist clients with a variety of tax issues. 

With close to 60 tax professionals, the firm offers clients expert advice on a broad range of tax matters. Its services include work on M&A, corporate reorganisations, restructurings, general tax, litigation and dispute resolution.

A key member of the firm is Al Meghji, who specialises in tax controversy and litigation.

Torys

The tax practice at Torys comprises seven partners and 11 other professionals, including Corrado Cardarelli who leads the team.

The firm consistently acts on the largest and most complex M&A transactions, including domestic and cross-border. Its practice also provides tax advice on capital markets transactions to major financial institutions in Canada, including many of the top five Canadian banks. In addition, it has advised some of Canada's largest multinationals such as Woodbridge, Thomson Reuters, Brookfield, Fairfax and Rogers.

During the research period the firm provided tax advice to Oxford Properties Group in the sale of its 50% interest in a portfolio of office properties in downtown Toronto and Calgary. It has also represented the Bank of Montreal in a tax litigation case concerning the application of the general anti-avoidance rule to disallow a foreign exchange loss on a cross-border financial structure.