Keith Smockum Keith Smockum
William Jesseau William Jesseau
Joe Bowcock Joe Bowcock
Tamara Maurer Tamara Maurer
Troy Asselin Troy Asselin
A Charles Gluek A. Charles Gluek
Patrick Monaghan Patrick Monaghan
Michael Burgar Michael Burgar
Elizabeth Scott Elizabeth Scott
Jeff Leroy Jeffrey R. LeRoy
Kenneth Wace Kenneth Wace
Kathryn Orydzuk Kathryn Orydzuk
Jeremy Ruffolo Jeremy Ruffolo
  • Keith is a founding partner of Smockum Zarnett LLP.  He is an expert trial and appellate lawyer and a frequent advocate at all levels of court.  Over the last three decades, he has tried Jury and Non-Jury cases throughout Ontario in the areas of motor vehicle, medical malpractice, property loss, construction and coverage matters.  He is Lexpert ranked for both personal injury and commercial insurance , and is a frequent speaker on trial tactics and insurance law.  Keith is married with three children and lives in Toronto.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Commercial Insurance
    • General Liability
    • Insurance Coverage
    • Products Liability
    • Medical Malpractice
    • Fire & Casualty
    • Professional Negligence
    • Directors and Officers Liability

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 1986
    • Bachelor of Laws, Osgoode Hall Law School, 1984
    • Bachelor of Arts York University, 1991
    • Keith is a member of the Canadian Bar Association, The Advocates’ Society, American Association for Justice (formerly, the American Trial Lawyers Association), Defense Research Institute, Canadian Defence Lawyers, Medico-Legal Society, and a Trustee with the Toronto Lawyers’ Association.

    Awards

    • Lexpert Legal Directory, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020: One of the most “repeatedly recommended” personal injury litigators, commercial litigators, and insurance litigators in Ontario
    • Best Lawyers Canada, 2016, 2017 2018: recognized by his peers as one of the top practitioners in personal injury litigation.
  • William Jesseau joined the firm’s predecessor in 2004 and was admitted to the partnership in 2010. He has been a managing partner of the firm since 2016.

    He continues to advocate at all levels of court in Ontario, including the Superior Court of Justice, Divisional Court and the Court of Appeal.

    William takes an aggressive and proactive approach to litigation to achieve results that are in the best interests of his clients. His insurance defense practice is focused on personal injury, tort motor vehicle claims, occupiers’ liability, commercial general liability and coverage disputes. He has conducted a number of jury and non-jury trials in the Superior Court of Justice.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Commercial Insurance
    • General Liability
    • Insurance Coverage
    • Products Liability
    • Medical Malpractice
    • Fire & Casualty
    • Professional Negligence

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2002
    • Bachelor of Laws, Dalhousie Law School, 2000
    • Bachelor of Theology (cum laude), University of Ottawa and St. Paul University, 1994
    • Bachelor of Arts, St. Francis Xavier University, 1990
    • Member of the Advocates’ Society, The Canadian Bar Association, Defence Research Institute

    Reported Decisions

    • Chaloux v. Kingston Fairways Golf Course, 2004 CanLII 25162
    • Camilli v. Guardian Insurance, 2008 ONCA 219
    • Del Rio v. Lawrence, 2009 CanLII 6833
    • Kalicharan v. Johnson, 2013 ONSC 7378
    • Elkhouli v. Senathirajah et al., 2014 ONSC 6140
    • Lakew v. Munro, 2014 ONSC 7316
    • Parra v. Laszcko, 2016 ONSC 911
    • Nadarajah v. Aviva Canada, 2017 ONSC 7522
    • Poonwasee v. Plaza, 2018 ONSC 3797
    • Dhar v. McGuinness, 2019 ONSC 2603
  • Joe Bowcock joined Smockum Zarnett LLP in 2010 and acts as a managing partner.

    He maintains a civil litigation practice with a focus on the defence of automobile litigation, personal injury, and occupier’s liability claims. He has acted as lead counsel in jury and non-jury trials, as well as at arbitrations before administrative tribunals. He has been invited to speak at continuing professional education programs.

     

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Automobile Litigation (tort)
    • Coverage Opinions
    • Property
    • Fire Losses

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2011
    • Juris Doctor, University of Windsor, 2010
    • Master of Arts, University of Waterloo, 2007
    • Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), Western University, 2006
    • Active member of The Advocates’ Society, Canadian Defence Lawyers, and Toronto Lawyers’ Association

    Reported Decisions

    • Lakew v. Munro, 2014 ONSC 7316
    • Abousamak v. Izzo, 2015 ONSC 3884
    • Gill v. Certas Direct Insurance Company, FSCO A15-006179
    • Valentine v. Rodriguez-Elizalde, 2016 ONSC 3540
    • Reid v. Smith, 2016 ONSC 5649
  • Tamara joined Smockum Zarnett LLP following her Call to the Bar in June 2011, having previously articled with the firm.

    Her principle focus is on insurance defence matters, including motor vehicle accidents, occupier’s liability and municipal liability. Tamara also has experience in defending Children’s Aid Societies and medical malpractice claims. Tamara acts as an articling principal at the firm.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Commercial Insurance
    • General Liability
    • Insurance Coverage
    • Products Liability
    • Medical Malpractice
    • Fire & Casualty
    • Professional Negligence
    • Directors and Officers Liability
    • Children's Aid Societies

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2011
    • Juris Doctor, Osgoode Hall Law School, 2010
    • Master of Business Administration, Schulich School of Business, 2010
    • Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), Bachelor of Environmental Studies (Hons.), University of
      Waterloo, 2006
    • Member of the Advocates’ Society, The Canadian Bar Association, Toronto Lawyer’s
      Association, and Canadian Defence Lawyers

    Reported Decisions

    • N.R. v. Children’s Aid Society of Toronto, 2012 ONCA 315
    • Strangis ats Patafio, 2013 ONSC 6240
  • Troy graduated from the University of Windsor Faculty of Law in 2010. He was called to the bar in 2011.

    Troy has a broad civil litigation practice focusing primarily on insurance defence matters in the areas of motor vehicle negligence, occupiers’ liability, property, long-term disability and life insurance claims.

    He is an active member of the Canadian Bar Association, Advocates’ Society, Toronto Lawyers’ Association and Canadian Defence Lawyers.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Automobile Litigation (tort)
    • Coverage Opinions
    • Disability Claims
    • Fire & Property Loss Defence
    • Subrogated Claims
    • Commercial General Liability

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2011
    • Juris Doctor, University of Windsor, 2010
    • Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), Laurentian University, 2007

    Reported Decisions

    • Suppa v. Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company, 2013 ONSC 679.
    • Bawden v. Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company, 2013 ONCA 717
    • Lima v. Moya / Mata v. Moya, 2015 ONSC 324
    • Lima v. Moya, 2015 ONSC 2605 (Div. Crt.)
    • Green v. Transamerica, 2015 ONSC 5430
    • Nadarajah v. Aviva Canada Inc., 2017 ONSC 7522
    • T.F. and M.N. by her Litigation Guardian T.F. v. Donna Galloway and the Kawartha-Haliburton Children’s Aid Society, 2018 ONSC 1249

     

  • Chuck practices insurance litigation with a focus on property claims, occupiers’ liability, automobile insurance (tort), disability insurance, subrogation claims, municipal claims, coverage issues, and life insurance.

    He graduated from Dartmouth College in 1974 and from Osgoode Hall Law School in 1977. Chuck was called to the Bar in 1978.

    He is a member of The Ontario Bar Association, The Advocates’ Society, Metropolitan Toronto Lawyers Association and Canadian Defence Lawyers.

    Areas of Practice

    • Automobile Insurance (tort)
    • Coverage Disputes
    • Disability Insurance
    • Municipal Claims
    • Life insurance
    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Property claims
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith

    Background

    • Called to the Ontario Bar, 1978
    • Osgoode Hall Law School, 1977
    • Dartmouth College, 1974
  • For over 30 years, Patrick has practiced law as a trial and appellate advocate with a concentration on casualty, commercial, property and insurance litigation. He has successfully acted as lead counsel in numerous jury and judge-alone trials, tribunal hearings and appeals.

    Patrick has represented clients in the transportation industry since being called to the Bar, and representative matters range from multi-party tractor-trailer calamities, through to products liability claims, subrogation and priority disputes and hearings at the WSIAT. Patrick has maintained a thorough understanding and an ability to effectively deal with challenging insurance-related issues, and he has appeared numerous times at trial and on appeal on matters involving coverage and contribution between insurers. He participated in the leading Canadian decision on equitable contribution, The Supreme Court of Canada decision in Family v. Lombard. Commercial disputes remain a focus with Patrick, and he has successfully litigated commercial disputes involving matters such as breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, franchise litigation, professional negligence and a wide range of contract disputes involving personal property and real estate both in the court system and by way of arbitration. In the casualty area, Patrick has carried numerous disputes to trial and appeal including heavy vehicle collisions, car and motorcycle accidents, as well as sports injury and medical malpractice cases.

    With experience in shareholder disputes, class actions, employment law and a great deal of ADR experience, Patrick observes that the principles of good advocacy are common to all disputes – there is no substitute for a careful understanding of the facts and a thorough knowledge of the operative principles of law.

    Patrick brings to the table the experience, judgment and creativity necessary to achieve clients’ objectives from the initial investigation stage of any dispute through to discovery and resolution, always with the ability to proceed to a trial or hearing if warranted. Around the firm, Patrick promotes teamwork, strategic thinking and the mentorship of younger lawyers.

    He is a member of the Advocates’ Society, a member and an occasional speaker at the Canadian Defence Lawyers and a member of the Toronto Lawyers Association. Patrick is married with two university-age children. In addition to an active family life, Patrick’s interests include travel, snowboarding, floor hockey and his version of “playing” music – guitar and vocals.

    Areas of Practice

    • Coverage Disputes
    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Property claims
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Construction Claims
    • Property Claims

    Background

    • Called to the Ontario Bar, 1985
    • Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.), University of British Columbia, 1983
    • Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), Western University, 1979

    Memberships

    • Patrick is a member of The Advocates’ Society, The Toronto Lawyers Association and The Canadian
      Defence Lawyers Association and The Ontario Bar Association.
    • Patrick has been recognized by Best Lawyers in 2019.

    Reported Decisions

    Patrick’s reported decisions include:

    • Kahlon v. ACE INA Insurance, 2019 ONCA 774
    • 1472292 Ontario Inc. (Rosen Express) v. Northbridge General Insurance Company, 2019 ONCA 753
    • Cosolo v. Geo A. Kelson Company Limited, 2018 ONCA 318
    • Mabe Canada Inc. United Floor Ltd, 2016 ONSC 1060; 2016 ONSC 5794; 2017 ONCA 87
    • Coast Capital Equipment Finance Ltd. v. Old Republic Insurance Company of Canada, 2017 ONSC 6694
    • Middleton v. Pankhurst, 2016 ONSC 3157
    • Aquatech Logistics Inc. and Aviva Insurance Company of Canada v. Lombard Insurance Company, ACE INA Insurance, Lloyd’s Underwriters, Economical Mutual and Jevco, 2015 ONSC 5858
    • Kempf Nguyen, 2013 ONSC 1977; 2013 ONSC 1129; 2015 ONCA 114
    • McKee v. Montemarana, [2008] OJ 2855 (SCJ); 2009 ONCA 52
    • Jones v. Niklaus, 2008 ONCA 650
    • Apparel licensee v. Apparel licensor, ICC. in July 2008
    • Canada Universities’ Reciprocal Insurance v. CGU Insurance, 2007 ONCA 650
    • McIntyre v. Grigg, [2006] OJ No 4420 (CA)
    • Solway v. Lloyd’s Underwriters [2006] OJ No 2059 (CA)
    • ARG Construction v. Allstate Insurance, [2005] OJ No 3073 (SCJ)
    • Leggat Estate v. Leggat, [2003] OJ No 757 (CA)
    • Evans v Jenkins (2003), 20 CPC (5 th ) 299 (SCJ)
    • Family Insurance Corp v Lombard Canada, 2002 SCC 48
    • Solway v. Davis Moving & Storage Inc., [2001] OJ No. 5049 (Gen Div), [2002] OJ No 4760 (CA)
    • Canadian Universities’ Reciprocal Insurance v. Halwell, [1998] OJ No 5322 (Gen Div), (2002), 166 OAC 196
    • Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal Decision No. 1307/13
    • Laurie v. Federated (Mutual) Insurance Co (1991), 2 CCLI (2d) 283 (Gen Div)
    • Hall v Tkachuk, Court File No. 920/89 (Parry Sound), aff’d Div Ct
  • Michael Burgar is an expert trial and appeal lawyer, who has worked on thousands of litigation cases over twenty-five years.

    Michael has successfully conducted jury and non-jury trials. Most of his cases relate to tort and insurance law. This covers a wide range of matters, including personal injury, insurance coverage, property damage, professional liability (claims against architects, engineers, doctors and other health care professionals), construction claims, and commercial general liability matters. He has significant and successful experience in general commercial and administrative law litigation.

    Areas of Practice

    • Personal Injury
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Coverage Opinions
    • Property Damage
    • Professional Liability
    • Construction Claims
    • CGL Liability

    Background

    • Admitted to Law Society of Ontario, 1994
    • Admitted to Law Society of British Columbia, 1997
    • Bachelor of Laws, Dalhousie, 1992
    • Member of Canadian Bar Association, Advocates Society, Defence Research Institute
    • Contributes to Team Lorraine, 5KM Walk to Conquer Cancer, Princess Margaret Foundation

    Awards

    • 1992 – Dalhousie Law (1992) – Winner of Prize for Best Mark in Jurisprudence (Legal Philosophy)

    Reported Decisions

    Lawyer of record in over 60 reported decisions, including:

    • Al-Radwan v. Wanless, 2018 ONSC 5464 – defence win at trial, through combined effect of jury verdict and threshold motion, where plaintiff’s claim was over $1M. All claims dismissed, with costs to defendant fixed at $120K.
    • Zachary Timoon Dentistry Professional Corporation v. Tonino Ciocca Dentistry Professional Corporation, 2014 ONSC 7171, affirmed 2015 ONCA 812 – plaintiff win in commercial partnership/joint venture application, where court upheld termination of dental practice co-ownership, and awarded sole ownership to dentist client on terms, and with costs ordered in his favour.
    • ING v. Miracle, 2011 ONCA 321 – appeal win for CGL insurer relying on pollution liability exclusion, in an insurance coverage dispute against the Government of Canada and a Mohawk Chief.
    • Cummings v. Budget Car Rentals Toronto Ltd. (1996), 29 OR (3d) 1 (CA) – acted for insurer in important authority that changed the law of the insurer’s duty to defend in motor vehicle cases, and remains good law today.
  • Elizabeth’s insurance defence practice focuses on automobile insurance, including tort, accident benefits, priority disputes and loss transfer. She also handles property claims, subrogation and occupier’s liability claims. Her priority is getting the best results for her client in as efficient a manner as possible with an attention to detail and a proactive approach.

    She has appeared in the Ontario Superior Court, the Court of Appeal as well at the Financial Services Commission of Ontario and the License Appeals Tribunal.

    Elizabeth has written several papers and appeared as a speaker at numerous legal conferences.

    Areas of Practice

    • Coverage Disputes
    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (Accident Benefits)
    • Priority Disputes
    • Subrogation

    Background

    • Called to the Ontario Bar, 1994
    • LL.B, University of New Brunswick, Faculty of Law, 1992
    • Psychology (Hons.), University of Western Ontario, 1998
  • Jeff practises insurance litigation with a focus on automobile insurance (tort), disability insurance, occupiers’ liability claims and subrogation claims.

    He has represented clients at the Court of Appeal, Superior Court of Justice, and Ontario Court of Justice. He graduated from the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario in 2004 and was called to the Bar in 2005. Jeff worked as a Liability Claims Adjuster with a major Canadian
    insurance company prior to attending law school. He graduated from Wilfrid Laurier University in 1999 with an Honours Bachelor of Business Administration.

    Jeff is a member of The Canadian Bar Association, The Ontario Bar Association, Canadian Defence Lawyers and The Advocates’ Society.

    Areas of Practice

    • Coverage Disputes
    • Disability Insurance
    • Life insurance
    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Punitive Damages/Bad Faith
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)

    Background

    • Called to the Ontario Bar, 2005
    • LL.B., University of Western Ontario, 2004
    • Honours Bachelor of Business Administration, Wilfrid Laurier University, 1999
  • Ken joined Smockum Zarnett LLP following his Call to the Bar in June 2015, having previously articled with the firm.

    Prior to becoming a lawyer, Ken spent 10 years working as an Advanced Care Paramedic in the Greater Toronto area. Since becoming a lawyer, he has developed a broad practice, handling a variety of complex insurance related claims. His practice focuses on defending occupier’s liability claims, municipal liability claims and motor vehicle accident claims.

    Areas of Practice

    • Automobile Insurance (tort)
    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Municipal Liability

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Upper Canada in 2015
    • Juris Doctor, Osgoode Hall Law School , 2014
    • Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), York University , 2010
    • Advanced Care Paramedic (Ontario Ministry of Health certified in 2003)
    • Active member of the Canadian Bar Association, Advocates’ Society, Toronto Lawyers’ Association and Canadian Defence Lawyers
  • Kathryn was born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta. She has lived in London and Sault Ste. Marie, but now calls Toronto home.

    Kathryn was called to the Ontario Bar in 2019 after completing her articles with the Algoma Community Legal Clinic.

    Kathryn joined Smockum Zarnett in 2020 as an Associate, where she practices in the area of insurance defence.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Subrogation
    • Trial Advocacy
    • Coverage Opinions

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2019
    • Juris Doctor, Western University, 2018
    • Bachelor of Arts, University of Alberta, 2015
    • Active member of The Advocates’ Society, Canadian Defence Lawyers, and Toronto Lawyers’ Association
  • Jeremy holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from York University and a Bachelor of Education degree from Lakehead University. After several years of working as a teacher, he graduated from Osgoode Hall Law School in 2019. Jeremy completed his Articles with Smockum Zarnett and was welcomed back to the firm as an Associate in 2020. He is a naturally skilled litigator and brings a client-focused approach to everything he does.

    In his spare time, Jeremy puts his musical talents to work with his band, playing in various venues throughout Toronto and the GTA. He is a committed “beer league” hockey player, and loves to golf, fish, and spend time at the family cottage.

    Areas of Practice

    • Occupier’s Liability
    • Personal Injury
    • Motor Vehicle Accident (tort)
    • Subrogation
    • Trial Advocacy

    Background

    • Admitted to the Law Society of Ontario, 2020
    • Juris Doctor, Osgoode Hall, 2019
    • Bachelor of Education, Lakehead University, 2013
    • Bachelor of Arts, York University, 2012
    • Active member of The Advocates’ Society, Canadian Defence Lawyers, and Toronto Lawyers’ Association