The life sciences industry depends on innovation, creativity and the ability to successfully commercialize new products.
Our Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology group teams up with publicly traded and privately held companies at every stage of their growth and product development, by providing constant assistance through timely legal advice as well as by sharing with them our unparalleled network of contacts.
We represent a wide range of clients in the life sciences sector, such as:
- multinational corporations
- research laboratories and clinical research organizations
- start-ups and mid-size companies
- hospitals and medical centers
- venture capitalists and angel investors
- hedge funds
Heenan Blaikie’s Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology group provides advice in connection with:
- Intellectual property – protection and enforcement of IP rights; patent and trade-mark preparation, prosecution and licensing; technology transfers; patentability, infringement, validity and freedom to operate opinions; non-disclosure agreements
- Litigation – IP litigation, product liability litigation, false claims and whistleblower litigation, class actions, labour and employment disputes, medical device litigation, environmental litigation
- Marketing and advertising – co-marketing, co-promotion and distribution agreements; advertising campaigns and promotional programs for life sciences products; commercialization strategies
- Regulatory law – regulatory approvals to bring products to market; due diligence audits; health and safety measurement audits; analysis and monitoring of the most recent guidelines and regulations enacted by federal, provincial and territorial agencies and departments
- Government relations – preparation and filing of drug applications; helping shape government policies that affect the life sciences industry in Canada and abroad; access to government funding; preparation of strategies on important policy and regulatory issues; involvement in policy debates
- Competition/antitrust and foreign investment – antitrust patent-pooling and cross-licensing arrangements; monitoring of competitors operations (ex.: joint ventures, strategic alliances, market share); foreign direct investment in Canada’s life sciences sector; internal and government investigations and enforcement proceedings; abuse of dominance and unfair competition issues; price discrimination schemes; non-competition and proprietary rights agreements
- Tax, trusts and estates – estate and trust planning, tax credits, investment trusts/funds, business succession plans, transfer pricing and cross-border investments, gift planning and charitable planning, personal wealth planning for physicians and other life sciences professionals
- Labour and employment law – recruiting and retention policies, confidentiality and non-competition agreements, employee benefit programs, compensation packages, immigration matters, collective bargaining, employee discrimination and harassment, wrongful dismissal, wages and hours
- Corporate and commercial – drafting and negotiation of various commercial transactions, including clinical research agreements, complex financings and venture capital investments, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings and licensing agreements; management buy-outs and buy-ins; due diligence and disclosures; corporate governance; directors’ and officers’ duties and liabilities; business planning and structuring; formation of business entities; good manufacturing practices
Scientific knowledge and legal expertise
Our Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology group draws upon the skills of lawyers across the country who understand our clients' businesses and provide value-added legal advice to help them respond quickly to the new competitive demands in the life sciences sector.
Several of our lawyers possess technical degrees or scientific training in a vast array of fields that touch upon the life sciences industry, such as biochemistry, chemistry, pharmacology, microbiology, electrical, mechanical and chemical engineering and computer science. A number of them also worked as scientists and engineers before becoming lawyers or occupied positions in science-oriented government departments and agencies, which makes Heenan Blaikie the go-to firm for our life sciences clients.