Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP

Restructuring/Insolvency Department

Nationwide - Canada
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What the team is known for Recognised for its consummate ability to manage a wide variety of complex restructuring and insolvency mandates for an impressive portfolio of financial advisers, private equity firms and major hedge funds. Offers strong national coverage with offices in Calgary, Montréal and Toronto. The firm has an impressive track record acting for debtors and court-appointed monitors on CCAA filings, and is active in both high-end and mid-market transactions. Increasingly involved in bondholder mandates and retail insolvency matters.

Strengths With its "team of high-quality lawyers," one client felt that "when you're in a complicated situation these are the guys you want to have."

Sources highlight the "depth of the practice across the board" and its "deep bench in other specialisms."

Work highlights Acted for Sears Canada in its approximately CAD2 billion CCAA restructuring.

Represented the DIP lenders and ad hoc committee of term lenders in Essar Steel Algoma's restructuring under the CCAA.

Notable practitioners

Jeremy Dacks is an experienced litigator in insolvency matters. "He's very strategic behind the scenes," said a client, while a peer applauded his "excellent submissions in court." Market sources appreciate his balanced approach: "He's confident, calm and collected - and very efficient."

Sources have high praise for Marc Wasserman , the national chair of the firm's insolvency and restructuring group. As a "savvy insolvency professional" who is "very technically astute," clients find that he provides "very practical business-oriented solutions." He leads many of the firm's most complex restructuring mandates, and sources appreciate his strength in "tough negotiations where it gets ugly," noting that he  "won't shy away from taking on difficult challenges and trying to solve them."

"Rising star" Michael De Lellis is a "strong performer" in the group, commented a source. He is very practical, according to clients, who also find him "very deal-oriented and an extremely good individual on execution." He represented a group of lenders in the CCAA restructuring of Toys R Us.

Sandra Abitan is the managing partner of the firm's Montréal office. Peers comment that she is a "terrific counsel" with both a national and local profile. She recently represented Homburg Invest in its CCAA restructuring of CAD2.8 billion debt. "She's very strategic and even-keeled," said a client, who also appreciates her "steady calming influence."

Tracy Sandler is highlighted for her "very deep understanding of retail restructuring." Clients describe her as "creative, indefatigable and very determined, but she's got the bedside manner to make it work."