A seasoned employment and human rights lawyer, Geoff provides practical, creative, and timely solutions to complex workplace issues. Geoff is uniquely attuned to his clients’ business needs, having been an entrepreneur himself and having worked with start-ups to Fortune 500 companies in industries spanning forestry, to mining, to high technology. Geoff leans on this experience to approach legal issues innovatively and pragmatically and deliver solutions tailored for his clients. While Geoff strives to enhance the way legal services are offered, he does not compromise on the fundamentals – competency, efficiency, and results – and he takes pride in being meticulous and devoted to his work.
Geoff helps businesses navigate all areas of law in the workplace, and frequently assists clients with:
- Drafting employment agreements, independent contractor agreements, confidentiality agreements, and intellectual property agreements;
- Drafting employment policies, including bullying and harassment policies, COVID-19 policies, drug & alcohol policies, and privacy policies;
- Occupational health and safety compliance;
- Disability management and workplace accommodations;
- Workplace investigations;
- Employment disputes and performance management;
- Employee hiring and firing;
- Employer-sponsored work permits; and
Geoff regularly contributes his legal insights through media appearances, articles and public engagements. He has been a faculty member and featured speaker at the B.C. Continuing Legal Education Society’s Employment Law Conference, a guest lecturer for the Canada Bar Association and the Vancouver Premier College of Hotel Management, and a member of the board of advisors for Simon Fraser University’s RADIUS program. He has appeared on The Lynda Steele Show, This is Why (Global News Podcast), Vancouver Consumer (CKNW Newstalk 980), and Roundhouse Radio. He has been featured in Canadian Employment Law Today, Business in Vancouver, Pro Contractor News, and Nanaimo News.
Geoff completed his articles with one of B.C.’s largest law firms before moving to a leading Vancouver-based boutique firm to specialize in employment law. Prior to joining Miller Thomson, Geoff founded and operated his own employment law firm, assisting clients throughout B.C. and Canada and abroad. Geoff’s diverse and entrepreneurial background provides him with a broad understanding of the challenges and business realities his clients face and the practical assistance they need.
Geoff enjoys giving back to the community and promoting access to justice, and has been involved in a number of volunteer initiatives, including as a volunteer lawyer with the UBC Law Student’s Legal Advice Program, Access Pro Bono’s Lawyer Referral Service, and Access Pro Bono’s Residential Tenancy Program.
- Kang v. Fetterly, 2019 BCHRT 118 – Succeeded in bringing an application to dismiss a Human Rights complaint by establishing that certain inappropriate remarks did not constitute a pattern of offensive behaviour that rose to the level of discrimination;
- Hyggen v. Teck Coal and others, 2020 BCHRT 34 – Succeeded in defending against an application to dismiss a Human Rights complaint;
- WorkSafeBC Prohibited Action Complaint No. 2019D558 (unreported) – Succeeded in bringing a Prohibited Action Complaint;
- Rush v. Fraser Health Authority, 2021 BCHRT 103 – Succeeded in defending an application to dismiss a Human Rights complaint; and
- WorkSafeBC Review Decision #R0281180 – Succeeded in overturning a WorkSafeBC decision denying a worker coverage of vision therapy.
- Guest Lecturer Canada Bar Association webinar on precarious employment, May 2019
- Guest Lecturer at Vancouver Premier College of Hospitality Management on contract law, employment standards, and human rights obligations, March 2019
- Interview with Pro Contractor News regarding independent contractors and vicarious liability, November 2018
- Interview on Vancouver Consumer, CKNW Newstalk 980, regarding cannabis in the workplace, September 2018
- Interview on This is Why, Global News Podcast, on the gig economy, August 2018
- Interview on The Lynda Steele Show, Global News, on the gig economy, August 2018
- Interview on Roundhouse Radio regarding cannabis in the workplace, August 2018
- Selected feature speaker at the 2018 CLEBC Employment Law Conference, May 2018
- Paper published for the 2018 CLEBC Employment Law Conference: “The Gig is Up: Adapting to the Growing Gig Economy”, May 2018
- Presenter at Diversified Rehabilitation Group seminar on accommodation in the workplace, April 2018
- Interview with Nanaimo News regarding the suspension of Nanaimo City Manager, February 2018
- Article published in Canadian Employment Law Today: “Sorting Out the Gig Economy”, September 2017
- Interview on Roundhouse Radio regarding independent contractors, September 2017
- Interview with Business in Vancouver on the gig economy, August 2017
- Law Society of British Columbia
Bar admissions & education
- British Columbia Bar, 2016
- J.D., Schulich School of Law, 2015
- B.A. (Hons.) Philosophy, 2011