Title: Commercial law


Rodney L. Hayley



Rodney Hayley

Firm: Lawson Lundell LLP
Address:Suite 1600 Cathedral Place
925 West Georgia Street
Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 3L2
Email:Send an Email
Local Time:Tue. 19:23
Web site: Direct Page


Rod practices general civil litigation, with an emphasis on class actions, toxic tort litigation, products liability, securities litigation, construction and engineering law, insurance law, mining law, aboriginal law, banking law and complex corporate/commercial disputes generally. Rod has also had significant cases in the areas of trusts, wills and estates, charitable institutions, employment, personal injury and constitutional and administrative law.

Rod has also been counsel or co‑counsel in cases in Delaware, Texas, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Quebec and Newfoundland.

Rod is currently co‑counsel for the federal government in class actions and other major Canadian tobacco litigation.

Recognition and Ranking
Benchmark Canada: The Guide to Canada'sLeading Litigation Firms and Attorneys: recognized for class actions, commercial, product liability and securities litigation in British Columbia


Languages: English


Areas of Practice


  • Business Litigation
  • Class Action Law
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Corporate Litigation
  • Insurance
  • Insurance Defense
  • Product Liability


Professional Career


Significant Accomplishments

Teaching Experience

As an adjunct Professor, Rod teaches a course at the University of Victoria, entitled "Class Actions and Mass Litigation", which Rod designed and has taught for several years. Rod has also taught the following courses:

* University of Victoria (Class Actions and Mass Litigation; Business Associations; Legal Process; Civil Procedure; Advanced Legal Research and Writing; Engineering Law; and Major Paper Supervision)
* University of British Columbia (Class Actions and Mass Torts; Construction Law; Advanced Legal Research and Writing (Supervisor); and Engineering Practice, Legal Aspects)
* Guest lecturer at Akitsiraq Law School, Iqaluit, Nunavut (Statutory Interpretation; Torts)
* Formerly an English professor, and taught full time at Dalhousie University, University of Western Ontario, the University of Alberta, and University of Ottawa (where he was Chair of the Honours English program and a Director of the Association of the Professors of the University)

Litigation Experience

Rod has acted for both defendants and plaintiffs groups in major class actions and other large, cross-border claims, including:
* Co-counsel for the government of Canada in national tobacco litigation, including class actions and other cases across Canada
* Defence counsel in a class action involving interest rates
* Defence counsel in a class action involving university fees
* Canadian counsel in a “mega” bankruptcy proceeding in the United States with cross border implications, involving thousands of product liability claims
* Defence counsel in an intended class action involving the alleged privatization of a major utility
* Defence counsel in an intended class action against the Province and a major crown corporation alleging breach of contract and various alleged duties concerning the ferries system in the interior of B.C.
* Co-counsel for the defendant companies in a multi-million dollar Alberta class action involving securities
* Defence counsel in a class action in which a multi-million dollar claim has been brought against a major utility involving allegations of overcharging on rates (the action was struck on jurisdictional grounds after a six day hearing, and the appeal was abandoned)
* Plaintiffs' counsel in a national class action against banks, which settled after certification
* Plaintiffs' counsel in a significant class proceeding against a credit union, involving overcharges, which resulted in judgment for the plaintiff after an eleven day summary trial, and judgment was affirmed on appeal with respect to one of the two major issues
* Counsel in the landmark Privest Properties case, the first asbestos property damage case to be litigated in Canada, which ended in success for our client, W.R. Grace, after a two-year trial and affirmation of the decision on appeal
* Counsel in two multi-million dollar cases in Saskatchewan involving insurance issues
* Counsel for the insurer of a manufacturer of an allegedly defective product (succeeded in obtaining an order striking the action against it)
* Counsel for various financial services companies and their representatives in civil actions and in proceedings before the B.C. Securities Commission
* Counsel in a multi-million dollar case in Saskatchewan involving oppression and other corporate issues
* Defence counsel in a multi-million dollar intended class action involving securities and corporate issues
* Defence counsel in a multi-million dollar Saskatchewan case involving securities, involving claims by approximately 100 plaintiffs
* Defence counsel in B.C. and Saskatchewan, and co-counsel in Ontario, in a multi-million dollar case involving securities sold across Canada
* Counsel for a major resource company in an action against the Province of British Columbia, involving a claim in excess of half a billion dollars

Professional Associations

Professional Activities
* CBA National Class Action Task Force (including both lawyers and judges from across Canada), Member
* Uniform Law Conference of Canada, National Class Action Project, Former Chair
* Editorial Advisory Board, Class Action Defence Quarterly (Butterworths), Member
* CBA Class Actions Committee (B.C.), Former Chair
* CBA, National Civil Litigation Section, Former Chair (Chair of the Section twice)
* CBA Civil Litigation Section, Vancouver, Former Chair
* CBA National Sections Council Executive, Member
* CBA Legislation and Law Reform Committee, Member
* CBA, Student Mentor Program, Mentor
* CBA Professional Liability Committee, Member
* B.C. Continuing Legal Education Society and the Professional Legal Training Course, Frequent Lecturer

Bar Admission

British Columbia (1984)
Saskatchewan (2005)



University of Victoria (B.A., first class honours)
University of London (Ph.D)
Queen's University (LL.B., 1983)
Rod was a Commonwealth Scholar, and was awarded a Canada Council Doctoral Scholarship, a Killam Postdoctoral Scholarship, and numerous other prizes and scholarships as an undergraduate, graduate and law student.