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Environment • Aboriginal • Energy

Victoria Chai

Associate

T: 416-862-4843  E: vchai@willmsshier.com

Bio

Victoria is an associate lawyer with a broad practice including environmental law, environmental litigation, energy and natural resource law, and Aboriginal law.

Environmental Law

Victoria assists clients with environmental regulatory compliance and approvals. Victoria advises clients about environmental law issues relating to contaminated soil and ground water, spills and discharges.  Victoria also provides advice on environmental aspects of corporate and commercial transactions including property transactions, leases and tenant issues.

Environmental and Energy Litigation

Victoria represents clients in the areas of environmental civil litigation, defence of regulatory prosecutions and administrative appeals.  Victoria assists with all aspects of litigation and advises clients about insurance.

Victoria assists clients in proceedings before administrative tribunals including the Environmental Review Tribunal and the Ontario Energy Board.

Contaminated Land and Environmental Risk Management

Victoria assists clients to navigate risks and liabilities associated with real estate transactions and development projects.  Victoria advises clients about compliance with provincial and federal environmental legislation for environmental assessments.  She also advises about environmental due diligence and compliance.

Northern and Aboriginal Law

Victoria advises First Nation communities, businesses, resource proponents, environmental boards and tribunals, and government clients in connection with natural resource development.

Prior Environmental and Aboriginal Experience

Victoria has a BES in Environment and Business with a specialization in Environmental Assessment.

Victoria previously worked at large provincial and municipal energy corporations as well as various ministries of the Province of Ontario.  Her experience includes carrying out project management activities for hydroelectric development projects, liaising with First Nations communities and regulatory agencies, and facilitating hydroelectric Feed-in-Tariff applications.

In law school, Victoria participated in various moots and a client consultation competition.  Victoria lead the Osgoode Environmental Law Society as Co-President.

Victoria was a volunteer for the Willms & Shier Environmental Law Moot in 2015, and participated as a mooter in the 2017 Moot.

Clients

  • Industrial businesses
  • Land developers and property owners
  • Commercial landlords and tenants
  • Municipalities 
  • Conservation authorities 
  • Aboriginal communities and businesses
  • Environmental boards and tribunals
  • Individuals

Representative Work

Contaminated Land and Environmental Risk Assessment

  • Transactional Environmental Due Diligence—Provided environmental due diligence advice to transaction lawyers involved in the sale of multiple properties in Ontario to a large asphalt producer in North America.  Reviewed environmental reports, advised about environmental risks and obligations, and assisted with drafting schedules for the asset purchase agreement.
  • Management of Municipal Liability—Assisted a municipality to prepare an environmental management program to minimize risks and liabilities associated with development projects and land transactions.
  • Advice to Property Developer—Assisted a company in navigating environmental and regulatory liabilities for a development property.
  • Product Liability—Advised a vendor company about potential environmental liabilities associated with potentially contaminated product, and assisted with negotiations between vendors and purchasers of the product.
  • Environmental Assessment—Assisted a national trade association to understand the regulatory impacts of federal environmental assessment legislation.

Environmental and Energy Litigation

  • Insurance Claim​Assisted homeowners in a claim for damages from a company and insurer for adverse health impacts and loss of property.
  • Civil Litigation for Contaminated Property—​Assisted property owners impacted by migration of contamination from a neighbouring property.
  • Intervention in Energy Board Hearing—​Assisted an industry group to intervene at the Ontario Energy Board in various energy proceedings related to electricity, natural gas and energy conservation.

Northern and Aboriginal Law

  • Consultation with First Nations Community—​Advised a municipality during consultations and negotiations with a First Nations community.
  • Construction Contract—​Assisted a construction contractor to navigate environmental issues during the construction of an infrastructure.
  • Environmental Assessment—Advised a First Nations client about regulatory impacts of provincial and federal environmental assessment legislation.

Recognition

Organizations

  • Canadian Bar Association—member
  • Ontario Bar Association—member

Speaking Engagements

Articles

October 18, 2017

The Lawyer's Daily: Overeager experts get wake-up call as they battle it out in environmental litigation

See Marc McAree’s and Victoria Chai’s article titled Overeager experts get wake-up call as they battle it out in environmental litigati...

More

Books

Education

  • Called to the bar of Ontario (2017)
  • J.D., Osgoode Hall Law School (2016)
  • BES., (Hons.) Environmental Studies and Environment and Business Co-op, University of Waterloo (2013)

Expertise

"The firm is one of, if not the best enviro law firm in the country ..."

Senior Litigation Counsel