Barnet Kussner

Partner*

Toronto
416.947.5079

Barnet Kussner

* Partner through a professional corporation

Barnet Kussner is a seasoned advocate with extensive experience acting for public and private sector clients, primarily on municipal, land use planning and property development matters.

Barnet is listed in Chambers Canada 2018 as one of the “Leading Individuals” in Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use (Ontario). It notes that he is considered “one of the top municipal lawyers in Canada” and that he is “highly valued by clients for his practical, business-oriented approach and political savvy”.

Barnet has specialized experience in many areas of municipal law, litigation and administrative law, and has acted in matters at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada. His practice primarily consists of land use planning and development, including acting for municipalities on adoption and appeals of comprehensive Official Plans and Secondary Plans and for development interests on residential, commercial, industrial and mixed-use projects. It also includes municipal licensing and regulation, municipal capital facilities and public-private ventures, enforcement of and challenges to municipal by-laws, constitutional litigation, sign regulation, liquor licence matters, and conflict of interest issues, among others.

Barnet frequently appears before Courts, the Ontario Municipal Board, municipal councils and Committees of Adjustment. His clients include municipalities and other public bodies, as well as development interests, entrepreneurs, individuals and advocacy groups.

Barnet has also gained extensive experience in litigation concerning constitutional issues, statutory interpretation, leasing disputes, liability of corporate officers and directors, professional negligence and contract matters, as well as alternative dispute resolution of such issues. Barnet’s litigation practice also concentrates on appellate advocacy, particularly judicial review and appeals from statutory agencies.

Barnet has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in Canada in the areas of Municipal Law and Real Estate Law, and has been recognized as a “2017 Notable Attorney” in Martindale-Hubbell. He is a Past Chair of the Municipal Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association and he has also been a lecturer on development law at Ryerson University.

Barnet has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada in several important municipal law cases dealing with judicial inquiries; constitutionality of billboard sign by-laws; and the legality of interim zoning by-laws. He has also acted for the City of Brampton, the Town of Richmond Hill and the Township of Springwater on appeals to the Ontario Municipal Board reporting comprehensive Official Plans and Secondary Plans.

Richmond Hill (Town) v. Elginbay Corporation et al., 2018 ONCA 72 (Ont. CA)

2226396 Ontario Inc. v Toronto (City), 2017 CanLII 68093 (OMB)

2322231 Ontario Inc. v Oakville (Town), 2017 CanLII 55910 (OMB)

Cimetta v Richmond Hill (Town), 2017 CanLII 53039 (OMB)

Darnley v. Thompson, 2016 ONSC 5545 (CanLII)

Hollydun Investments 86 Inc., Hollydun Investments 88 Inc., and 1030553 Ontario Limited v. Toronto (City), 2016 CanLII 22873 (OMB)

The Corporation of the Town of Richmond Hill v. Elginbay Corporation et al., 2016 ONSC 1673 (Div. Ct.)

Worden v. Ontario Municipal Board, 2014 ONSC 7247 (CanLII) (Div. Ct.)

Southgate Public Interest Group v. Southgate (Township), 2014 ONSC 2935 (CanLII) (Div. Ct.)

Metro1 Development Corp. v. Toronto (City), 2014 ONSC 4225 (CanLII)

Durham (Regional Municipality) v. Oshawa (City), 2013 ONCA 573 (CanLII)

The Corporation of The Town of Richmond Hill v. Yonge Bayview Holdings Inc. et al., 2013 ONSC 2252 (CanLII) (Div. Ct.)

Black v. Owen, 2012 ONSC 400 (CanLII) (Div. Ct.)

1001411 Ontario Limited v. City Of Toronto Economic Development Corporation et al., 2012 CanLII 15227 (ON SC)

Town of Orangeville v. County of Dufferin, 2010 ONCA 83

Aecon Construction and Materials Limited v. Brampton (City), 2009 CanLII 39988 (ON S.C.D.C.)

Summit Golf & Country Club v. York Region, 2008 CanLII 35930 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

Jaffary v. Greaves, 2008 CanLII 28055 (Ont. S.C.J.); additional reasons, 2008 CanLII 36159 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Vann Media Inc. v. Town of Oakville (2008), 89 O.R. (3d) 385 (S.C.J.); appeal allowed, 2008 ONCA 752 (CanLII)

1357202 Ontario Ltd. v. 1326046 Ontario Limited, 2007 CanLII 39361 (Ont. S.C.J.)

City of London v. RSJ Holdings Inc. (2007), 283 D.L.R. (4th) 257 (S.C.C.)

Oxbow Lake Cottagers Association v. Township of Lake of Bays (2006), 26 M.P.L.R. (4th) 137 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Hallstone Products Ltd. v. Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (2006), 271 D.L.R. (4th) 268 (Ont. S.C.J.); see also (2004), 71 O.R. (3d) 373 (S.C.J.) and (2004), 1 C.P.C. (6th) 324 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Homeland Oasis Corp. v. Town of Markham, [2005] O.J. No. 1558 (Div. Ct.); see also (2004), 6 M.P.L.R. (4th) 240 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Sobeys Capital Inc. v. City of Elliot Lake (2005), 13 M.P.L.R. (4th) 232 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Uukkivi v. Township of Lake of Bays (2004), 2 M.P.L.R. (4th) 240 (Ont. S.C.J.)

1497777 Ontario Inc. v. Leon’s Furniture Inc. (2004), 238 D.L.R. (4th) 574 (Ont. C.A.)

Universal Worker’s Union v. Labourers’ International Union of North America (2004), 70 O.R. (3d) 435 (S.C.J.)

Burton v. Town of Oakville (2004), 69 O.R. (3d) 771 (S.C.J.)

Chen v. Town of Markham (2003), 179 O.A.C. 395 (Div. Ct.)

Vann Niagara Ltd. v. Town of Oakville (2001), 21 M.P.L.R. (3d) 183 (Ont. S.C.J.); appeal allowed (2002), 60 O.R. (3d) 1 (C.A); appeal allowed, [2003] 3 S.C.R. 158 (S.C.C.)

Township of Dymond v. Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing (2003), 68 O.R. (3d) 126 (Div. Ct.)

1217598 Ontario Ltd. v. Town of Richmond Hill, [2003] O.J. No. 3636 (Div. Ct.)

City of Ottawa v. Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing (2003), 62 O.R. (3d) 503 (Div. Ct.); see also (2002), 62 O.R. (3d) 503 (Div.Ct.)

697578 Ontario Ltd. v. City of Niagara Falls (2002), 168 O.A.C. 228 (C.A.)

1356904 Ontario Inc. v. City of Burlington (2002), 164 O.A.C. 183 (Div. Ct.)

Cole v. City of Hamilton (2002), 58 O.R. (3d) 584 (S.C.J.); appeal dismissed (2003), 65 O.R. (3d) 156 (C.A.); leave to appeal refused, April 22, 2004 (S.C.C.)

City of Guelph v. Wyndham Street Investments Inc. (2001), 56 O.R. (3d) 490 (S.C.J.); appeal dismissed, February 28, 2003 (C.A.); leave to appeal refused, [2003] S.C.C.A. No. 187

Jafine v. Mortson, [2001] O.J. No. 1799 (S.C.J.)

Straka v. Humber River Regional Hospital (2001), 51 O.R. (3d) 1 (C.A.)

City of Toronto v. 1291547 Ontario Inc. et al. (2000), 49 O.R. (3d) 709 (S.C.J.)

Toronto Taxi Alliance v. City of Toronto (2000), 49 O.R. (3d) 33 (Div. Ct.)

Treesann Management Inc. v. Town of Richmond Hill (2000), 47 O.R. (3d) 221 (C.A.); on appeal from (1998), 41 O.R. (3d) 625 (Gen. Div.)

Re Mel Lastman and The Queen in Right of Ontario (2000), 47 O.R. (3d) 177 (S.C.J.)

Heritage Custom Jewellers v. Metropolitan Toronto Police Services Board (2000), 46 O.R. (3d) 593 (S.C.J.)

Moscoe v. City of Toronto and Toronto Transit Commission et al. (1999), 4 M.P.L.R. (3d) 280 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

913719 Ontario Limited v. City of Mississauga (1998), 40 O.R. (3d) 413 (C.A.); application for leave to appeal dismissed, February 11, 1999 (S.C.C.)

Consortium Developments (Clearwater) Ltd. v. City of Sarnia et al., [1998] 3 S.C.R. 3; on appeal from (1996), 30 O.R. (3d) 1 (C.A.); on appeal from (1995), 23 O.R. (3d) 498 (Div. Ct.)

Erin Dancer Holding Corp. et al. v. Town of Richmond Hill (1998), 38 O.R. (3d) 452 (C.A.); application for leave to appeal dismissed, January 7, 1999 (S.C.C.)

Las Vegas Strip Ltd. v. City of Toronto (1997), 32 O.R. (3d) 651 (C.A.)

Albert Bloom Ltd. v. Township of Bentinck (1996), 31 O.R. (3d) 317 (C.A.)

Luxor Entertainment Corporation v. City of North York (1996), 27 O.R. (3d) 259 (Gen. Div.)

O’Neill Community Ratepayers Association v. City of Oshawa (1995), 22 O.R. (3d) 648 (Gen Div.)

Mosport Park Limited v. Municipality of Clarington (1994), 19 O.R. (3d) 233 (Div. Ct.)

Manchester v. City of North York et al. (1994), 18 O.R. (3d) 540; appeal from (1993), 15 O.R. (3d) 690 (Gen. Div.)

Town of Gravenhurst v. Information and Privacy Commissioner/Ontario et al. (1993), 13 O.R. (3d) 531 (Div. Ct.)

Rayside v. City of Toronto et al. (1992), 10 O.R. (3d) 287 (Div. Ct.)

Van Schyndel et al. v. Harrell et al. (1991), 6 O.R. (3d) 335 (Div. Ct.); appeal from (1991), 4 O.R. (3d) 474 (Gen. Div.)

  • Recognized by Chambers Canada as a leading lawyer in Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use (Ontario)
  • Repeatedly recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada as a leading lawyer in Municipal Law and Real Estate Law
  • Repeatedly recognized in the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a leading lawyer in Property Development
  • Repeatedly recognized in the Lexpert Directory Special Edition – Infrastructure as a leading practitioner
  • Recognized in the Lawyer Monthly Legal Awards 2017 in the category of Zoning, Planning & Land Use – Law Firm of the Year – Canada
  • Past Chair, WeirFoulds Municipal and Planning Law Practice
  • Past Chair, Municipal Law Section Executive of the Ontario Bar Association
Called to the Bar
  • Ontario (1991)
Education
  • LL.B., University of Toronto, 1989
  • B.A., McGill University, 1985
Affiliations
  • Ontario Bar Association
  • Toronto Lawyers Association
  • The Advocates' Society
  • American Planning Association
  • Lambda Alpha International (Simcoe Chapter)
Languages
  • French

Speaking Engagements

Speaker, "The Six-Minute Municipal Lawyer 2018", Law Society of Ontario, May 7, 2018
Panelist, "Financing or Funding the Project", WeirFoulds Municipal Infrastructure Forum, Kleinburg ON, April 2018  
Panelist, "Parkland Panel", Ontario Bar Association Institute 2018 – Municipal Law, Toronto, ON, February 2018
Panelist, "Financing or Funding the Project", WeirFoulds Municipal Infrastructure Forum, Etobicoke, ON, September, 2017
Speaker, "The Six-Minute Municipal Lawyer 2016", Law Society of Upper Canada, May 4, 2016
Speaker,"Intensification and the Alternative Parkland Rate: Cash Grab' vs. Cap Grab'?" Ontario Bar Association – Municipal Law Section Program, October 27, 2015
Speaker, Ontario Bar Association, 2015 Annual Institute Program - Municipal and Planning Law, February 2015
Co-Chair and Speaker, Ontario Bar Association, 2013 Annual Institute Program - Municipal and Planning Law, February 2013
Co-Chair, Ontario Bar Association, "Planning and Building on Professionalism: Dos and Don'ts for the Municipal Law Specialist", December 2012
Co-Chair and Speaker, Ontario Bar Association, 2012 Annual Institute Program - Municipal and Planning Law, February 2012

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment

 

Papers

“It’s Not Over Yet: The Latest on Parkland Dedication / Cash-in-Lieu Policies and By-Laws under the Planning Act”, The Six-Minute Municipal Lawyer 2018, Law Society of Ontario, May 2018

“Parkland Dedication: Testing the Board’s Authority”, Ontario Bar Association Institute 2018 – Municipal Law, February 2018 (with Roslyn Houser)

Bill 73 Planning Act Revisions: Major Changes to the Planning Process – But for Better or for Worse?”, The Six-Minute Municipal Lawyer 2016, Law Society of Upper Canada, May 2016

“Intensification and the Alternative Parkland Rate: ‘Cash Grab’ vs. ‘Cap Grab'”?”, Ontario Bar Association – Municipal Law Section Program, October 2015

“Recent Developments in Building Permit Appeals: Ten Things You Should Know”, Ontario Bar Association, 2013 Annual Institute Program – Municipal and Planning Law (All Things Municipal), February 2013

“Lawful Transaction or Unlawful Bonus: The Anti-Bonusing Provision of the Municipal Act in the Context of Complex Commercial Transactions”, Ontario Bar Association, 2012 Annual Institute Program – Municipal and Planning Law (Cool Topics in Municipal and Planning Law), February 2012

“Signs of the Times: Recent Developments in Municipal Regulation of Billboards and Other Signage”, Canadian Bar Association Annual Convention, August 2011