Eric is a partner and co-chair of the firm’s Business Reorganization & Insolvency Group. Whether he is acting as an advocate, advisor or negotiator, Eric is considered a business person’s litigator. He looks for efficient and practical solutions to address his clients’ strategic concerns and business goals. Learning about and understanding his clients’ businesses and their priorities enable him to work closely with them to realize superior outcomes.
Eric has established long-standing, valued relationships with some of Canada’s leading financial institutions, accounting firms, pension funds, leasing companies, commercial lenders, retailers, title insurers and marketing boards who look to him for his insight and expertise in business law and insolvency matters.
Eric is also one of the firm’s two TAGLaw representatives. TAGLaw is a global alliance of high quality, independent law firms with a sister network (TIAG) of accounting firms around the world. In this leadership role, Eric is responsible for overseeing litigation retainers with TAGLaw firms both to and from Blaneys, and in that capacity deals with law firms and clients from all over the world.
Eric acts on behalf of trustees, receivers, monitors, creditors and debtors in matters including receiverships, restructurings, bankruptcies, enforcement of security, debt collection and priority disputes. His commercial litigation practice includes banking and PPSA matters, shareholder disputes, class actions, commercial leasing and other forms of contractual disputes, real estate litigation, fraud, and defense of professional negligence claims against lawyers in commercial matters. Eric’s general civil litigation practice has included an eclectic collection retainers in areas such as defamation, tax, wills and estates, trusts, environmental law and the liability of public authorities.
Most notably, shortly after returning to the firm as an associate in 1996, Eric began working as co-counsel for the plaintiff in Jane Doe. v. The Metropolitan Toronto Police Force, the first ever case in Canada to impose on the police a private law duty of care to the public at large
By way of background, on a late summer night in 1986, Jane Doe was sexually assaulted in her downtown Toronto apartment. She later discovered that she was the fifth victim of the “balcony rapist”, whose previous victims over the prior seven months were similarly situated women in her neighborhood, attacked under similar circumstances. Rather than warning women in Jane Doe’s neighborhood that a serial rapist was at large, police remained silent rendering these women bait.
On July 3, 1998, in a ruling confirming a breach of the police’s duty of care to Jane Doe, and of her rights to equality and to security of the person under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Jane Doe was awarded significant damages. Both Toronto City Council and the Toronto Police Services Board delivered formal apologies to Jane Doe. There was no appeal. The case was made into a movie that aired on the CBC in 2002 (The Many Trials of One Jane Doe), and it was also the subject of a book by Jane Doe herself (The Story of Jane Doe).
Born and raised in Montreal, Quebec, Eric represents clients in both of Canada’s official languages. Eric started at Blaneys as an articling student in 1994, following his graduation from the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. Before returning to the firm as an associate following his call to the Bar in early 1996, Eric spent several months caddying at The Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland.
See ‘Experience’ tab for notable recent and ongoing retainers.