Richard Halpern

Senior Counsel


Richard Halpern is a senior lawyer acting exclusively for injured people in medical negligence cases, with a special focus on infants injured at or around the time of birth. Richard is known across Canada for his expertise in birth injury cases. He has more than 30 years of experience representing seriously injured people.

Richard has a detailed understanding of the highly technical medical issues, particularly relating to birth injury cases. His experience allows him to provide meaningful advice and direction to families considering a medical negligence lawsuit following a review of the medical records.

Richard is a founding member of the Birth Injury Lawyers Alliance (BILA). BILA was formed by a group of lawyers from across Canada to promote the effective representation of children and families affected by avoidable injuries to children occurring at or around the time of birth. BILA members meet regularly to share strategies, review scientific literature, and develop best practices.

Richard is known for tackling some of the most complex and challenging medical malpractice cases. He has lectured and written extensively on matters concerned with obstetrics, the cause of newborn injury, medical malpractice cases more generally, and legal and trial strategies. He has delivered more than 90 presentations to professional groups, including lawyers and health care providers. Richard has written a paper called “Birth Trauma Litigation: Proving the Cause of Newborn Neurologic Injury”, an essential read for lawyers acting for children injured around the time of birth.  He has also recently written a critique of new obstetrical guidelines, called “Fetal Surveillance in Labour, a Review of SOCG 2020 Guideline 396: Oversights, Omissions and Opportunities Squandered”.

Recently, Richard has taken on the complex issue of causation in tort law. He has written a comprehensive paper exploring the roots of causation, called “Causation on Trial – A Call for Change in How We Think About Causation in Tort”. He has written a second paper on causation called “What Should the Causal Questions Look Like”.

In 2015, Richard was the recipient of the Award for Distinguished Service to the legal profession, conferred by his peers at the Ontario Bar Association. Richard has been recognized by and listed in The Best Lawyers™ in Canada. He has been recognized in The Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory.

Richard has acted in hundreds of medical malpractice cases. He has achieved significant settlements for his clients, many exceeding $10,000,000, though past results are not necessarily indicative of future outcomes. He has appeared in the Superior Court of Ontario and the Ontario Court of Appeal.

Richard is currently a member of The Holland Group, a group that promotes reforms in medical malpractice law and practice aimed at increasing access to justice and timely and equitable resolutions of medical malpractice claims. The Holland Group is chaired by former Ontario Court of Appeal Justice John Laskin.  

Richard is a past President of the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association. He is a past member of the Judicial Advisory Committee on Judicial Appointments (GTA) appointed by the Federal Minister of Justice. This committee evaluated candidates for appointment to the Superior Court of Justice, the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal.

In addition to his Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) and Bachelor of Laws degree (LLB), Richard earned a Masters Degree in Law (LLM) in Civil Litigation at Osgoode Hall Law School. He is a member of the Advocates’ Society, the Ontario Trial Lawyers’ Association, the Ontario Bar Association, Litigation Counsel of America, and the American Association of Justice.


  • University of Toronto, Bachelor of Arts, 1979
  • University of Windsor, Bachelor of Laws, 1982
  • Osgoode Hall Law School, Masters of Law (Civil Litigation), 1998

Professional Involvement.

  • Birth Injury Lawyers’ Alliance, Founding Member
  • Ontario Trial Lawyers Association
  • Member of the Birth Trauma Litigation Group of the AAJ
  • The Canadian Bar Association
  • The Advocates’ Society
  • American Association for Justice
  • Past President of the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association, 2007 – 2008
  • Member of the American Association for Access to Justice

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