Member of the Quebec Bar since 1982
Languages: English, French
The Honourable Clément Gascon joined Woods as Senior Counsel in the Spring of 2020. After a career of more than seventeen years in the Canadian judiciary, he returned to the private practice of law, which he had left in 2002. He uses his in-depth expertise and experience to guide and assist parties and their counsel in resolving disputes through arbitration at the national and international levels and acts as strategic advisor in the insolvency, restructuring and litigation matters of the firm.
Admitted to the Quebec Bar in 1982, he worked for twenty years in the fields of civil and commercial litigation and labour law in a national firm and has earned a reputation as an efficient, well-prepared and very involved counsel. While working as a lawyer, he taught business law, labour law and construction law at the Département des sciences comptables of the Université du Québec à Montréal, at the McGill University Faculty of Law and at the Barreau du Québec. In addition, he co-authored several books, publications and articles on the individual contract of employment that dealt in particular with termination of employment, restrictive covenants, fiduciary duty and unfair competition.
He was appointed to the Quebec Superior Court in October 2002. While on that court, he sat regularly as a member of the Commercial Division, and he acted as the Division's coordinating judge from 2008 to 2011. The Commercial Division hears all commercial law cases, including restructurings under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA), proceedings under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (BIA) and disputes between shareholders. He also served as the Superior Court's representative on the committee on class actions of the CBA's Quebec Branch from 2007 to 2010. He assumed the same role on the working group that studied the U.S.-Canada Cross-Border Class Action Protocols.
He was appointed to the Quebec Court of Appeal in April 2012, and to the Supreme Court of Canada in June 2014. During his years at the Supreme Court, he notably acted as the Court’s representative within the international organization regrouping the supreme courts of the member states of the Francophonie.
During his judicial career, the Honourable Clément Gascon has maintained his involvement in terms of legal education for lawyers of many provincial bars as well as for law students (at McGill University and Ottawa University), particularly in matters relating to written and oral advocacy, commercial litigation and insolvency and restructuring. He has also regularly participated as speaker in continuing legal education seminars for judges on commercial law, class actions and judgment writing. From 2007 to 2012, he notably co-chaired the Judgment Writing Seminar of the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice, where he continued to participate as speaker from 2013 onward. He has also been a regular faculty member at the Seminar for New Federally Appointed Judges of the National Judicial Institute.
Since 2019, he has devoted further time as speaker in conferences and talks aimed at encouraging a better dialogue on mental health issues and wellness within the Canadian legal community, including the judiciary, the law societies and the law faculties.
With over thirty-eight years of experience as an appellate and trial judge and as a commercial litigator, he brings his solid bilingual (French and English) and bijuridical (civil law and common law) expertise as jurist, adjudicator and litigator to bear in his advisory work with the firm’s attorneys and clients, as well as in his role as commercial arbitrator in domestic and international matters.
1981 McGill University, Faculty of Law
Bachelor of Civil Law (B.C.L.)
Upper Second Class Honours and University Scholar
1978 Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf
PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES AND ASSOCIATIONS
Canadian Bar Association
The Advocates’ Society
American College of Trial Lawyers
Institut de médiation et d'arbitrage du Québec (IMAQ)
Insolvency Institute of Canada (Honorary Member)