Helen Richards is an accomplished civil litigator known for her clever arguments, strategic thinking, and ability to simplify complex problems. Her areas of expertise include complex commercial matters, professional negligence, and securities litigation (as well as related internal investigations). She has successfully argued cases at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and regularly represents individuals and corporations on matters involving their regulatory bodies. Helen has an extensive clientele that includes developers and other corporations in the commercial real estate industry, tech start-ups, franchisees, and regulated health professionals such as physicians, mortgage brokers, teachers, and lawyers.
Chambers Canada 2024 described Helen as “an expert civil litigator who offers significant expertise in commercial disputes and securities matters” and reported one client as describing Helen as “whip smart”.
Helen spent many years as a litigator at McCarthy Tétrault LLP and Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP before moving in-house to practice securities litigation for a national bank. She joined Ross Nasseri LLP in 2022. She is widely published on topics relating to commercial and securities litigation and taught Contract Remedies at Osgoode Hall Law School from 2018 to 2020.
Helen is on the Executive Committee of the Ontario Bar Association’s Civil Litigation Section as well as the Ontario Bar Association’s Women Lawyers Section. She is also a member of the Canadian Chapter of the International Association of Women Judges Committee on Discrimination and is an active participant in law student mentoring programs at the University of Toronto and the University of Ottawa.
Awards & Rankings
- Ranked in Chambers Canada 2024 for Litigation: Securities (Ontario)
- RN LLP recognized as a leading litigation firm in Canada by Benchmark Litigation (2021, 2022)
- RN LLP recognized in The Globe and Mail’s Canada’s Best Law Firms list for Dispute Resolution (Litigation, Arbitration & Investigations) (2021, 2022)
Select Representative Matters
- Jacobs v McGee, 2023 ONSC 2765, leave to appeal denied, 2023 ONSC 4394 and 2023 ONSC 3427: Successfully resisted a motion for a Norwich Order in the context a series of related actions involving allegations of breach of fiduciary duties, misrepresentation, and defamation, among others; obtained a substantial costs indemnity order in respect of the motion; successfully resisted the motion for leave to appeal from the motion decision at Divisional Court.
- Carbone v Boccia, 2022 ONSC 6528, 2023 ONSC 54, 2023 ONSC 3625: Successfully moved for Mareva injunctions and Norwich Orders in a strongly contested case of fraud.
- Riddell v Huynh, 2022 ONSC 2153: Successfully resisted an injunction for a Certificate of Pending Litigation.
- ADAG Corporation Canada Ltd. v SaskEnergy Incorporated, 2018 SKCA 14, leave to appeal to the Supreme Court dismissed: Successfully obtained a decision at the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal reversing a decision of the Court of King’s Bench concerning options to purchase and The Partnership Act; successfully resisted the motion for leave to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court of Canada.
- Google Inc. v Equuestek Solutions Inc., 2017 SCC 34: Counsel for multiple intervenors, including the American Society of News Editors, the First Amendment Coalition, AOL Inc. and others in a seminal Supreme Court case concerning a worldwide injunction against Google.
- VM v GJD, 2014 CanLii 14446 (ON HPARB): Successfully defended a physician client against the appeal of a favourable decision from the Inquiries Complaints and Reports Committee.
- Goodwood Inc. v Cathy Forest Products Corp., 2013 ONSC 4242: Successfully recovered shareholders’ costs incurred as a result of a s. 144 court-ordered shareholders’ meeting (Canada Business Corporations Act).
- Acting for major developers in regulatory proceedings and civil proceedings arising from real estate transactions.
- Advising on numerous cases against financial institutions and their employees relating to alleged professional negligence and breaches of securities laws.
- Advising large financial institutions on confidential internal investigations arising out of alleged breaches of securities laws.
- Advising physicians and teachers in responding to confidential complaints and disciplinary issues involving their professional body.
Select Publications and Presentations
- Pleadings, Drafting Considerations, and Case Development, Civil Litigation Refresher 2023, Law Society of Ontario, October 10, 2023 (Presentation)
- Clarifying Legal Obligations, Top Appeals 2021, Ontario Bar Association, April 26, 2022 (Presentation)
- “Enforcement Highlights from the 2019 OSC Annual Report”, Blakes Business Class, October 2019
- “Access Denied: Primary Market Liability Regime Not Available to Secondary Market Security Holders”, Blakes Business Class, August 2016
- “R v Vice Media, Canadian Court Orders Vice Media to Deliver Source Communications to Police”, Inforrm Blog, April 2016
- “Common Law Securities Misrepresentation Claims – Still With Us In the Post-Green Era?”, The Canadian Class Action Review, March 2016
- “Dragons and Arrows: Arrowhead and Limiting Professional Liability to Third Parties”, Canadian Business Law Journal, April 2013