John Buhlman is an experienced litigator who acts on complex environmental and commercial litigation. A key part of his practice involves advising clients on regulatory compliance with environmental laws.

John is the former head of the firm’s litigation practice. With degrees in both engineering and law, he practises in the areas of environmental law, litigation, and administrative law, and has appeared as counsel on matters in all levels of the courts in Ontario, and before several administrative tribunals, including the Environmental Review Tribunal, the Board of Directors of the College of Chiropractors of Ontario, the Commercial Registration Appeal Tribunal, the Law Society of Upper Canada, and the Royal College of Dental Surgeons. John also acts as a mediator and arbitrator and is a Mediation and Arbitration Member of the Arbitration and Mediation Institute of Ontario.

John assists clients in resolving disputes through negotiation, mediation, arbitration and litigation. He acts regularly in complex cases involving commercial disputes, injunctions, real estate issues, shareholder disputes, environmental claims, environmental law issues, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, insurance coverage, class actions, and torts.

John acts for Pit and Quarry owners with respect to approvals under the Aggregate Resources Act.

John acted for a multi-national chemical company in defending against Orders issued by the Ministry of the Environment relating to contamination of groundwater. After the longest environmental hearings in Ontario, the case was settled advantageously for his client. John also acted for the same client defending lawsuits arising out of the contamination. The claims were all settled.

John successfully defended a retailer in a multi-billion dollar class action relating to PVC mini-blinds containing a lead stabilizer. The action was dismissed early on a motion for summary judgment.

John successfully acted for a landlord seeking to recover substantial damages for breach of a lease from a tenant which held the lease through a shell company. The action was settled advantageously for his client.

John acted in the leading case on the inspection powers of a Provincial Officer working for the Ministry of the Environment.

St. Mary’s Cement Inc. (Canada) v. Ontario (Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing) (2013), 2 M.P.L.R. (5th) 46 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

St. Mary’s Cement Inc. (Canada) v. Ontario (Director, Ministry of the Environment) (2012), 70 C.E.L.R. (3d) 266 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

St. Mary’s Cement Inc. (Canada) v. Ontario (Ministry of the Environment) (2012), 65 C.E.L.R. (3d) 302 (ERT)

St. Mary’s Cement Inc. (Canada) v. Ontario (Ministry of the Environment) (2011), 58 C.E.L.R. (3d) 125 (ERT)

McCutcheon v. Westhill Redevelopment Company Limited, (2010), 48 C.E.L.R. (3d) 259 (Ont. Div. t.)

James Dick Construction Ltd. v. Caledon (Town), (2010), 66 O.M.B.R. No. 263

Westhill Redevelopment (2009), 67 M.P.L.R (4th) 73 (OMB)

James Dick Construction Ltd. v. Caledon (Town), [2006] O.M.B.D. No. 1116

Hill and Hill Farms Ltd. v. Bluewater (Municipality) (2006), 82 O.R. (3d) 505 (C.A.)

Peacock et al v. Corporation of Norfolk County; Ontario Pork Producers’ Marketing Board, Intervenor (2006), 81 O.R. (3d) 530 (C.A.)

R. v. Crompton Co./ Cie (2005), 78 O.R. (3d) 135 (C.A.)

Hill and Hill Farms Ltd. v. Bluewater (Municipality) (2005), 26 M.P.L.R. (4th) 20 (C.A.)

Peacock v. Norfolk (County) (2004), 73 O.R. (3d) 200 (S.C.J.)

R v. Crompton Co./ Cie (2004), 76 O.R. (3d) 758

Millgate Financial Corp. v. BCED Holdings Ltd. (2003), 47 C.B.R. (4th) 278 (S.C.J.)

Canadian Broadcasting Corp. Pension Plan v. BF Realty Holdings Ltd. (2002), 38 C.B.R. (4th) 13(Ont. C.A.)

920935 Ontario Inc. v. Sudbury (Regional Municipality) (2001), 22 M.P.L.R. (3d) 65 (Ont. C.A.)

Uniroyal Chemical Co. v. Ontario (Ministry of the Environment), [2000] O.E.A.B. No. 37

Philip Services Corp., Re (1999), 15 C.B.R. (4th) 107 (Ont. S.C.J.)

Ewaskiw v. Zellers Inc. (1998), 40 O.R. (3d) 795 (Gen. Div.)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (C.U.P.E.), Locals 1144 & 1590 v. Ontario (Superintendent of Pensions) (1998), 19 C.C.P.B. 54

Wellesley Central Hospital v. Ontario (Health Services Restructuring Commission H.S.R.C.) (1997), 151 D.L.R. (4th) 706 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Pembroke Civic Hospital v. Ontario (Health Services Restructuring Commission H.S.R.C.) (1997), 102 O.A.C. 207 (Ont. C.A.)

Olympia & York Developments Ltd., Re (1997), 143 D.L.R. (4th) 536 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Olympia & York Developments Ltd., Re (1997), 45 C.B.R. (3d) 100 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Alldrew Holdings Ltd. v. Nibro Holdings Ltd. (1996), 91 O.A.C. 241 (Ont. C.A.)

Fidelity Bankers Life Insurance Co. (Deputy Receiver of) v. Dowsley (1996), 2 C.P.C. (4th) 45 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd. v. Kansa General Insurance Co. (1996), 89 O.A.C. 311

Central Capital Corporation, Re (1996), 27 O.R. (3d) 494 (Ont. C.A.)

APT Environment, Re (1995), 18 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 180

Central Capital Corporation, Re (1995), 22 B.L.R. (2d) 210 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd., Re (1994), 15 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 83 (Ont. Gen. Div.)

Tyre King Tyre Recycling Ltd. and Straza v. Director, West Central Region, Ontario Ministry of the Environment (1992), 9 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 314

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd., Re (1992), 9 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 151

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd., Re (1992), 9 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 85

Dale v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. (1991), 5 C.C.L.I. (2d) 220 (Ont. C.A.)

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd. v. Ontario (Ministry of Environment), [1991] O.E.A.B. No. 3

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd., Re (1991), 6 C.E.L.R. (N.S.) 68

Uniroyal Chemical Ltd. v. Ontario (Ministry of Environment), [1990] O.E.A.B. No. 31

Dale v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. (1990), 47 C.C.L.I. (2d) 253 (Ont. H.C.J.)

Rigg v. Toronto (City) (1989), 46 M.P.L.R. 113 (Ont. H.C.J.)

Mar-Flite Ltd. v. Guardall Warranty Corp. (Trustee of) (1989), 75 C.B.R. (N.S.) 203

Metropolitan Toronto School Board v. Metropolitan Separate School Board (1987), 20 O.A.C. 400 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

Levita v. Board of Directors of Chiropractic, [1987] O.J. No. 21 (Div. Ct.)

Metropolitan Toronto School Board v. Foodcorp Ltd. (1986), 18 O.M.B.R. 395

Tien Kue Inn Ltd. v. Ontario (Minister of Transportation & Communications) (1984), 32 L.C.R. 224

Muskoka & Parry Sound Telephone Co. v. Ontario Telephone Development Corp. (1984), 32 L.C.R. 154

Essex (County) Roman Catholic Separate School Board v. Tremblay-Webster (1984), 45 O.R. (2d) 83 (C.A.)

392980 Ontario Ltd. v. Welland (City) (1984), 45 O.R. (2d) 165 (H.C.J.)

Essex (County) Roman Catholic Separate School Board v. Tremblay-Webster (1983), 142 D.L.R. (4th) 479 (Ont. Div. Ct.)

Black, Re (1982), 37 O.R. (2d) 219 (H.C.J.)

  • Repeatedly recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada as a leading lawyer in Administrative and Public Law, Corporate and Commercial Litigation and Environmental Law
  • Recognized as a leading practitioner in the 2016 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory
  • National Research Council scholarship (declined)
  • The Advocates’ Society Award for Excellence in Teaching, June 2009
  • The Sopinka Cup Society, Secretary & Treasurer, Past President
  • The Advocates’ Society, Instructor and Past Director, Member of the Education Committee
  • Chair of the Arnup Cup Committee, The Advocates’ Society, since 1990
  • Ontario Centre for Advocacy Training, Instructor, since 1989
  • Arbitration and Mediation Institute of Ontario, Mediation and Arbitration Panel Member
Called to the Bar
  • Ontario (1981)
Education
  • LL.B, University of Windsor, 1979
  • B.A.Sc., University of Waterloo, 1976
  • Certificate of Achievement, Applied ADR Workshop, University of Windsor, 2013
  • Certificate of Achievement, Advanced ADR Workshop & Certificate of Achievement, ADR Workshop, University of Windsor, 1998
Affiliations
  • Toronto Lawyers' Association
  • Past Executive Member of the Ontario Bar Association, Environmental Law Section
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Ontario Bar Association
  • The Advocates' Society
  • Canadian Corporate Counsel Association
  • Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society
  • Air & Waste Management Association

Corporate Directorship

The Sopinka Cup Society

Ontario Stone, Sand & Gravel Association

Speaking Engagements

John is a regular speaker at both professional development seminars and client-focused seminars. Key topics of particular interest to clients are:
Panelist, "Entire Agreement Clauses", WeirFoulds LLP Beware of Boilerplate Seminar, May 2018
Speaker, "Brownfield Redevelopment", WeirFoulds LLP Municipal and Planning Law Practice 2016 Private Sector Seminar, May 18, 2016
Panellist, "Environmental Liability: Considerations & Strategies", Association of Corporate Counsel, October 28, 2015
Moderator, This Land is My Land, This Land is Your Land.. Wait a Minute. Whose Land Did We Say This Is? A discussion of Aboriginal Land Claims and Resource Development", American Bar Association Section of International Law - 2015 Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C.
"Resolving Growing Incivility Issues by Promoting Professional Courtesy", Canadian Institute, May 7, 2013
"Environmental Law & Regulation in Ontario", Canadian Institute, October 25 & 26, 2012
"Advanced Administrative Law & Practice Conference", Canadian Institute, October 25 & 26, 2011
"Certificates of Pending Litigation", Ontario Bar Association's program, "Walking the Tightrope: Pre-Trial Remedies in the age of high costs and low budgets", October 11, 2005
"Recent Developments in Environmental Law: The Environmental Bill of Rights and The Three Rs Regulations", WeirFoulds LLP Client Seminar, May 1994

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment

Legend: GeneralLitigationPropertyCorporateGovernment