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Jeffrey W. Lem, C.S.

Jeffrey W. Lem, C.S.



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Jeffrey Lem is a partner in the firm’s Real Estate Group, and has expertise in a broad range of sophisticated commercial real estate matters. He has participated in the acquisition, disposition, leasing, development and financing of numerous major real estate projects and portfolios. Jeffrey acted for, and was a trustee of, public mortgage investment trusts, and has experience in all aspects of real estate-based lending, restructuring and remedies.

He has written for various journals, newspapers and magazines, including the Digest of Municipal and Planning Law, California International Law Journal, Ontario Lawyers Weekly, LawPro, The Abstract Page (Ontario Bar Association) and The Abstract (American College of Mortgage Attorneys).

Prior to joining Miller Thomson, he was a partner in commercial real estate and financial restructuring and insolvency at a Canadian national law firm in Toronto.

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  • LL.M., Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, 2001
  • J.D., Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, 1987
  • B.Comm., University of Toronto, 1984

Professional Achievements

  • Best Lawyers in Canada – Real Estate Law, 2014
  • Recognized by the Lexpert®/American Lawyer Guide to the 500 Leading Lawyers in Canada as a leading practitioner in the areas of property development and property leasing.
  • Awarded the Ontario Bar Association's Award for Excellence in Real Estate (2009).
  • Recognized in Chambers Global Guide to the World's Leading Lawyers for Business and Leaders in their Field in real estate.
  • Recognized in The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers.
  • Certified as a specialist in real estate law by The Law Society of Upper Canada.
  • Recommended by the Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory as a leading business law practitioner in the areas of property development and property leasing.
  • Recognized by The Best Lawyers in Canada® in the area of real estate law.
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent® Rated Lawyer, 2013
  • Recognized by Expert Guides, Real Estate Lawyers.
  • 2013 FACL Lifetime Achievement Award for significant contributions to the legal community and the Asian community in general.
  • Recognized in The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers, 2013
  • Listed in Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory of leading lawyers for Project Finance, Property Development, Property Leasing Law, 2013

Representative Work

  • Acted in the sale, by a federal Crown corporation, of surplus vacant lands at its head offices in Toronto and the subsequent concurrent leasing and monetization of the proceeds therefrom.
  • Acted for a large Canadian hotel REIT, in partnership with a Canadian pension fund, in a takeover bid for all of the outstanding units of a luxury hotel REIT with properties in Canada and the US and related financing.
  • Acted for a leading independent provider of pharmaceutical manufacturing and development services, in all of its most recent facilities and refinancings, as well as in the disposition of surplus manufacturing facilities.
  • Acted for one of the largest real estate investment fund managers in Europe, in its first investment in Canada, being its acquisition of a 50% interest in six limited partnerships that own six major Canadian regional shopping centres and one office tower, with a combined leaseable area of more than 4,000,000 square feet.
  • Acted for a US hotel operator in its shared acquisition with two Canadian pension plans in the ownership of a luxury hotel chain and related financing.

Community Involvement

  • Counsel, Mon Sheong Foundation


  • Executive Committee, Real Property Section, Ontario Bar Association
  • Regent for Canada, American College of Mortgage Attorneys
  • American Bar Association
  • Association of Chinese Canadian Lawyers of Ontario
  • Federation of Chinese Canadian Professionals
  • Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers
  • Solicitor in England and Wales

Other Editorial Contributions

  • Legal editor, Building Magazine
  • Real estate law columnist, Law Times
  • Editor-in-chief, Real Property Reports (Canada’s only national real property case law reporter series)

Faculty Experience

  • Instructor in the Real Property section of the Bar Admission Course
  • Director of the LL.M. Program in Real Property Law at Osgoode Hall Law School.
  • Regular speaker on various for continuing legal education organizations, including: The Law Society of Upper Canada, Osgoode Hall Law School, the Ontario Bar Association, Federated Press and the American College of Mortgage Attorneys.


  • The Sweet Smell of Sriracha in the Morning: Irwindale v. Huy Fong Foods, Law Times, 2013
  • The Sweet Smell of Sriracha in the Morning: Irwindale v. Huy Fong Foods, Building Magazine, 2013
  • Problem Easement and Defining them on the Ground in a post-MacIssac v. Salo Ontario, Four Point Learning, Guelph, ON, 2013
  • A New Reporting Paradigm: "Combine and Reverse" Subnom: How Not To Get Sued!, Six Minute, 2013
  • MacIssac v. Sale: Rectifying Boundaries, CLE - Thunder Bay - Commercial Real Estate, 2013
  • New Relief for Landlords from Relief from Forfeiture, Leasing Times, October 2013
  • The New Condo Bureaucracy: Condominium Act Review – Stage Two Report, MTCondoLaw - Ontario, September 2013 - Special Alert
  • The Commercial Lease -- Not Just Another Contract, Leasing Times, January 2, 2013
  • And So It Begins: Condominium Law Reform in Ontario, Let's Talk Condo - Ontario, Fall 2012
  • Death, Taxes and the Obligation to Pay Rent Without Deduction, Abatement or Set-Off, Leasing Times, December 1, 2011
  • The Dirt: Get used to unfolding those condominium plans, Law Times, 2011

Industry Expertise

Year of Call

  • England & Wales, 2000
  • Ontario Bar, 1989