Brian D. Portas

Brian D. Portas  


Executive Summary

Brian Portas is a partner in our Labour and Employment Group.  He has been selected for inclusion in the Best LawyersTM in Canada for Immigration Law since 2014.  Brian is also a Chartered Professional in Human Resources (CPHR) (previously Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP).

In his business immigration practice, Brian has assisted clients with obtaining Canadian work permits (including applications that require Labour Market Impact Assessments/Labour Market Opinions from Service Canada), preparing permanent residence applications, citizenship applications, and dealing with other immigration issues such as temporary entry into Canada as a business visitor.

In his employment law practice, Brian has assisted both employers and employees with the negotiation of severance packages, wrongful dismissal lawsuits, Employment Standards Code and Human Rights complaints, disability and accommodation, progressive discipline and other employment-related matters. He has also assisted clients with the drafting and review of various types of employment-related agreements, termination documents and human resource policies.

Representative Work

Employment Law

  • Provide ongoing counsel to human resource managers and other employer representatives on termination issues, progressive discipline, human resource policies, disability and accommodation, privacy, drug and alcohol, and other employment-related matters.
  • Assisted clients with the preparation of offer letters and employment agreements.
  • Represented primarily employers in wrongful dismissal lawsuits, employment standards, human rights and privacy complaints.

Business Immigration

  • Assisted large construction companies with foreign worker new hires and international employee transfers.
  • Assisted international oil & gas companies to develop immigration processes for international recruitment purposes and intra-company transferees.
  • Assisted major multi-national corporations in establishing Canadian operations and advised on strategies to transfer experienced employees from other locations of the corporations to the new operations.

Publications & Presentations

  • Has presented seminars on several employment law topics such as hiring temporary foreign workers, recruitment, hiring, employment contracts and policies, termination, employment records, email- and Internet-usage policies, disability, accommodation and privacy issues, 2003-present.
  • Author, “Can I Just Hire a US Contractor to Do Work in Canada?,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Summer 2011.
  • Author, “Recreational Drug Users and Human Rights,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Fall 2007.
  • Author, “You Can't Fire Me! I'm Sick!,” Alberta Venture magazine, November 2006.
  • Author, “The Release of Human Rights Claims,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Fall 2005.
  • Author, “Practical Tips When Acting for Employers,” Wrongful Dismissal, Legal Education Society of Alberta, February 2005 (with Fred W. T. Somerville).
  • Author, “New Criminal Code Provisions Provide Whistleblower Protection to Employees,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Spring 2005.
  • Author, “Mandatory Retirement Policies:  A Thing of the Past?,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Fall 2003.
  • Author, “Some Claims Against Directors Can Never be Compromised by a CCAA Plan,” Bankruptcy and Insolvency Law, Corporate Liability, November 2002 (with Josef G.A. Krüger).
  • Author, “Managing Mental Disability Claims:  The Duty to Accommodate Mental Disability under Human Rights Legislation,” BLG’s Labour & Employment Newsletter, Fall 2002.

Rankings & Recognitions

  • Recognized in the 2019 and 2017 editions of Benchmark Litigation - The Definitive Guide to Canada's Leading Litigation Firms & Attorneys as a "Future Star" (Labour and Employment).
  • Recognized in the 2019 (and since 2014) edition of Best Lawyers in Canada (Immigration Law).
  • Recommended in the 2017 edition of the Legal 500 Canada (Business Immigration).