Schabas, Paul


Jump to: navigation, search

Paul Schabas is one of Canada's leading media lawyers. He has tried numerous libel cases (jury and non-jury), and frequently argues newsgathering issues, such as publication bans, access to courts and other tribunals, protection of confidential sources and access to information, search warrants and subpoenas. He has been lead counsel on many of the most significant media law cases in the Supreme Court, including Mentuck (discretionary publication bans), Grant v. Torstar (which established the defence of responsible communication in the public interest), Toronto Star v. Canada (validity of mandatory publication bans), Crookes (liability for hyperlinks) and Breeden v. Black (libel tourism). He has represented most of Canada's major media organizations and foreign media including The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Associated Press, among others. Mr Schabas has also represented coalitions of national and international media organizations in Supreme Court cases dealing with access to information (Criminal Lawyers Association, Information Commissioner v. Canada).

As a partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP in Toronto, Paul has a wide-ranging trial and appeal practice, with extensive experience in commercial litigation, arbitrations (international and domestic), white collar criminal and regulatory matters, constitutional, media and public law. He has been counsel on many leading Supreme Court Charter cases dealing with freedom of expression, equality rights, judicial independence, fundamental justice and search and seizure (e.g., Morgentaler (abortion), Canadian Foundation for Children Youth and the Law (corporal punishment), Taylor (hate speech), and Provincial Court Judges Association (judicial independence)). He also represents clients on complex commercial, administrative law and white collar criminal matters (including successfully defending the only charges to be laid arising from the notorious "Mulroney/Airbus" affair).

In August 2011 Canadian Lawyer magazine named Paul as one of Canada’s 25 “most influential” lawyers. Paul is a Bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada (elected 2007 and 2011), the governing body for Ontario’s 42,000 lawyers. He is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, Past President of the Canadian Media Lawyers Association and Past President of Pro Bono Law Ontario. Paul is a Trustee of the Law Foundation of Ontario, and a Director of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Lawyers Rights Watch Canada and The Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History. He is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law where he teaches a course on media and defamation law, and previously taught trial advocacy at Osgoode Hall Law School. He has published numerous articles and frequently speaks on media, Charter and other issues at conferences, including the Law Society’s “Special Lectures” in 2000 and 2003. Through Interights in London, Paul has submitted briefs on Canadian constitutional law to the European Court of Human Rights. He has also sat on the Boards of community and cultural organizations. Paul received a B.A. (Hons.) and an LL.B from the University of Toronto and was called to the Bar in 1986.

18 Apr 12

Personal tools