John G. O'Connor

Key practice areas
Maritime Law, Transportation Law, Insurance and Reinsurance, Litigation and Dispute Resolution
Québec Bar 1981 Ontario Bar 1986

John G. O'Connor has extensive experience in maritime and commercial law. He has handled all types of marine insurance claims, including P&I liability, environmental liability and general average, as well as ship financing, maritime accidents and salvage matters. He has been especially active in the energy sector and involved in the international carriage and sale of oil, gas and other bulk commodities. He also has extensive experience in marine, errors and omissions and protection and indemnity insurance.

John is actively involved in the sector’s trade associations and is a past president of several marine organizations, including the Canadian Maritime Law Association and the Association of Maritime Arbitrators of Canada. He is currently Vice-President of the Comité maritime international.

John has been teaching international maritime law and commercial law at McGill University in Montréal for more than 20 years. He regularly speaks to several organizations within the legal community and has been interviewed on multiple occasions as marine incidents arose. He has been on CBC Radio’s As it Happens twice and on both radio and television of the CBC and Radio-Canada.

John is recognized as a leading lawyer by Chambers Canada (Transportation: Shipping and Energy Law), Best Lawyers in Canada (Maritime Law, Energy Law and Transportation Law) and The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (Shipping & Maritime Law). He is also recommended in Who’s Who Legal (Transport: Shipping).

  • Chambers Canada:
    • Transportation: Shipping, 2015 and 2018-2024
    • Energy Law, 2020
  • Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory – Shipping & Maritime Law, 2013-2024
  • Best Lawyers in Canada:
    • Maritime Law, 2014-2024
    • Energy Law, 2017-2023
    • Transportation Law, 2016-2022
    • Lawyer of the Year – Transportation Law, 2017
  • Who’s Who Legal – Transport: Shipping
  • Comité Maritime International:
    • Vice-President, since 2022
    • Executive Councillor, since 2016
    • Titulary Member
  • London Maritime Arbitrators Association, Member, since 1986
  • Association of Maritime Arbitrators of Canada:
    • Founder
    • Former President
  • Canadian Maritime Law Association, Former President
  • Canadian Bar Association, Past Chairman of the National Maritime Law Section

D.C.L., Maritime law, McGill University

LL.M., Public Law, Université Laval

J.D., University of Ottawa

LL.B., Université Laval

B.A., University of Toronto