Andrew F. Sunter
Andrew's practice is focused on complex, high-stakes litigation across a wide range of areas, including commercial, construction, energy, regulatory and security disputes, corporate governance issues and class actions. Before joining BD&P in 2011, Andrew worked at a top national law firm in Toronto. Andrew has appeared as lead counsel before lower courts in Alberta and Ontario, before the Alberta Court of Appeal, before administrative tribunals and in commercial arbitrations.
Andrew's focus is on:
Commercial and general litigation
- Contractual disputes, alleged misuse of confidential information, alleged breaches of trust and/or fiduciary duty, negligence claims and intentional torts
- Motions to strike pleadings, summary judgment motions and interlocutory injunction motions
- Major construction-related disputes involving complex engineering, procurement and construction issues
- Acts in oil & gas operating, royalty, joint venture and accounting disputes
- Acts in domestic and international commercial arbitration proceedings
Securities and shareholder litigation
- Represents shareholders, issuers, directors and officers claims for oppression, secondary market misrepresentation, breach of shareholders' agreements, violations of securities laws and other shareholder-related causes of action
- Represents bidders and targets (special committees) in contested/unsolicited takeover bids
- Represents boards of directors and shareholders in hostile proxy contests and disputes
- Represents shareholders, issuers, directors and officers in proceedings before Canadian securities commissions
- Acts for defendants and plaintiffs in a wide range of class proceedings
Andrew is a Board member of Hull Services, a non-profit providing child, youth and family mental health services.
Andrew is the co-lead of BD&P's litigation group and a member of the Business Development Committee and Compensation Committee. He is also:
- Member, 10+ Standing Committee, The Advocates' Society
- Member, Alberta Advisory Committee, The Advocates' Society
- Member, Executive Team for the Commercial Litigation Practice Group, The Advocates' Society (2016-2017)
- Co-Instructor, Corporate Governance segment of the Advanced Business Law course, Osgoode Hall Law School (2007, 2009 and 2010)
Part Director (2011-2021) and Past Chair (2018-2021) of the Potential Place Society.
- Member, Law Society of Alberta
- Member, Canadian Bar Association
- Member, The Advocates' Society
Andrew has also presented at various conferences, panels, seminars, and other events, including:
- Advocates' Society Summer Trial Advocacy College, June 2021
- Cross-Examination: Strategies for Success, The Advocate's Society Civil Litigation Skills Certificate Program, May 2019
- Preparing and Leading Expert Evidence, The Advocates' Society Civil Litigation Skills Certificate Program, Trial from A to Z, May 2017
- CNRL v. Wood Group, Natural Resources Law Subsection of the Canadian Bar Association, April 2017
- Top 10 Commercial Litigation Cases of 2016, The Advocates' Society, Toronto, March 2017
- Comity as a Tonic to the Multijurisdictional "Whack-a-Mole" Problem in Securities Class Actions, Online Webinar, Securities Class Action Litigation: What Lies Ahead, 2016
Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P's $6.8 billion acquisition of Inter Pipeline Ltd.
Counsel to Inter Pipeline Ltd. in its acquisition by Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P pursuant to a statutory plan of arrangement for $6.8 billion.
Precedent-setting securities law decision
Counsel successfully representing Inter Pipeline Ltd. (IPL) in a precedent-setting case before the Alberta Securities Commission. The case addressed Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.'s use of total return swaps in its takeover bid of IPL. The decision is the first time that a Canadian securities regulator has directly addressed the use of total return swaps within the context of takeover bids following the changes to the Canadian takeover bid regime in 2016. (Re Bison Acquisition Corp., 2021 ABASC 100)
Successfully represented a global manufacturing company in a multi-party litigation
Counsel successfully representing the plaintiffs, a global manufacturing company, in multi-party litigation involving the breach of a distribution agreement and product quality issues. The plaintiffs were awarded both punitive damages and solicitor client costs against the defendants. (Manson Insulation Products Ltd. v Crossroads C&I Distributors, 2019 ABQB 684).
MEG Energy Corp.'s hostile tender offer from Husky Energy
Counsel to MEG, a Canadian oil sands producer, and its board of directors in response to the unsolicited tender offer by Husky Energy. Husky sought to acquire the entire share capital of MEG for approximately $6 billion.
Successful defense of an ASC application from a dissident shareholder
Counsel in the successful defense of an application brought by a dissident shareholder seeking public interest orders under the Alberta Securities Act relating to proxy solicitation processes utilized in a hostile proxy contest. (PointNorth Capital Inc., 2017 ABASC 121).
Three successful appeals before the Alberta Courts on behalf of CNRL
Counsel in connection with three successful appeals and one cross appeal before Court of Appeal involving the allocation of damages from a pipeline failure and Pierringer Agreements affect the calculation of damages. (Canadian Natural Resources Limited v. Wood Group Mustang (Canada) Inc. (IMV Projects Inc.), 2018 ABCA 305)
Successful leave application on behalf of CNRL
Counsel in the successful leave application to have the Court of Appeal reconsider its earlier decision in Bedard v Amin, 2010 ABCA 3. (Canadian Natural Resources Limited v. Wood Group Mustang (Canada) Inc. (IMV Projects Inc.), 2018 ABCA 122).
Savanna Energy Services Corp.'s hostile takeover defence
Counsel to Savanna Energy Services in the defence of a $450 million hostile takeover bid by Total Energy Services Inc.
Liquor Stores N.A. Ltd.'s proxy contest defense
Counsel to Liquor Stores in the defense of a proxy contest initiated by a dissident institutional shareholder to gain control of Liquor Stores' board of directors. BD&P’s work included the successful defense of Liquor Stores' soliciting dealer fee arrangement before a hearing of the Alberta Securities Commission.
Successful defense in a negligence and breach of contract
Counsel to the Plaintiff in a three-month trial where the defendant engineering company was found to be negligent and in breach of contract in its design of a high-temperature emulsion pipeline near Cold Lake, Alberta. (Canadian Natural Resources Limited v.Wood Group Mustang (Canada) Inc., formerly IMV Projects Inc., 2017 ABQB 106).
Rogers Communications Inc.'s successful appeal of application
Counsel to Rogers Communications Inc. in successful appeal of application to stay a "system access fee" class action as an abuse of process. (Turner v Bell Mobility Inc, 2016 ABCA 21).
Successful defense of insider trading allegations
Counsel to the senior management team of a mining company in the successful defense of insider trading allegations before Alberta Securities Commission. (Stan, Re, 2013 ABASC 148).
Successful defense of insider trading allegations
Counsel to major shareholder of industrial services company in successful defense of insider trading allegations before Alberta Securities Commission. (Holtby, Re, 2013 ABASC 45)
Application before the Alberta Securities Commission for Paladin Labs Inc. in hostile takeover bid
Counsel to Paladin Labs Inc. in connection with a hostile takeover bid for Afexa, the makers of ColdFx, including in an application before the Alberta Securities Commission to set aside Afexa's rights plan. (Afexa Life Sciences Inc., Re, 2011 ABASC 532)
$96 million stay of arbitration
Counsel in successful application to have a $96 million arbitration stayed. (Canadian Natural Resources Limited v. Flatiron Constructors Canada Limited, 2018 ABQB 613)
Successful securities class action settlement
Counsel for plaintiff class in successful application for Court approval of a partial settlement of national securities class action relating to a real estate project (Harnam v. Chandran, 2018)
Recent honours and recognition
Named in the Legal 500 Canada as a Leading lawyer in Litigation: General Commercial (Alberta) by Chambers Canada (2023) and recommended lawyer in Dispute resolution: Alberta (2022 - 2023)
Recognized in Best Lawyers in Canada as a recommended lawyer in corporate and commercial litigation (2021-2023)
Future star in Benchmark Litigation Canada (2019-2023)
Securities litigation lawyer to watch in the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (2017)
Named in Lexpert's guide to the leading U.S./Canada cross-border litigation lawyers in Canada (2017)
March 16, 2020
Force majeure clauses might cover COVID-19 and partially excuse contractual duties
December 20, 2019
Overlapping arbitration and litigation: when can the court step in?
March 13, 2019
Private federal corporations will need to keep record of shareholders with significant control as of June 2019
December 10, 2018
Kicking the certification can down the road: the evolution of judicial discretion in class action litigation - a western perspective
September 26, 2018
Rule against overcompensation in Pierringer settlements should be applied generously in favour of plaintiffs
April 26, 2023
BD&P ranked highly by 2023 Benchmark Litigation Canada
November 15, 2022
The Legal 500 2023 Rankings recognize cutting edge counsel
September 29, 2022
Chambers Canada recognizes fourteen BD&P lawyers for legal expertise in 2023 edition
August 25, 2022
Thirty-five BD&P lawyers recognized in Best Lawyers in Canada, 2023 edition
April 28, 2021
Fifteen BD&P litigation lawyers ranked in Benchmark Canada 2021
August 27, 2020
Thirty-four lawyers recognized in the 2021 edition of the Best Lawyers in Canada guide
April 14, 2020
Thirteen BD&P litigation lawyers ranked in Benchmark Canada 2020
March 26, 2019