Cristina Birks

Counsel

Montréal
CBirks@blg.com
514.954.2533
Cristina’s practice focuses on commercial litigation and arbitration in numerous fields.
She pleads before all judicial bodies in the province of Québec, as well as before the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal. She has also pleaded before international arbitration tribunals, including those governed by the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce and the International Centre for Dispute Resolution, as well as the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes.

Prior to joining BLG, Cristina worked at National Geographic in Washington, D.C. and completed an internship at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in Costa Rica. She also worked at a boutique Aboriginal law firm in Montréal.

She is fluent in English, French and Spanish.

Experience

  • Represents a leading international aerospace company in an international commercial arbitration dispute under the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce.
  • Represented a Latin American manufacturer in an international commercial arbitration dispute under the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce.
  • Represented a Latin American government against a Spanish company in an investor-state dispute regarding illegal expropriation before the World Bank's International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes.
  • Represented a manufacturer seeking compensation from one of its suppliers as a result of defective parts that gave rise to a global epidemic problem (Hewlett-Packard France v. Matrox Graphics Inc., 2020 QCCS 78).
  • Represents an institution of public government created under a modern treaty for the management of wildlife in Northern Québec with respect to polar bear harvesting before the Federal Court (currently before the Court of Appeal).
  • Represented the trustee of a testamentary trust in a $14 million damage action alleging poor management (Bell v. Molson, 2012 QCCS 5498) and debated before the Court of Appeal (Bell v. Molson, 2015 QCCA 583).
  • Represents parties in the homologation, recognition and contestation of arbitral awards.

Beyond Our Walls

Professional Involvement

  • Advisory Board, (past president 2015-2016), Young Canadian Arbitration Practitioners
  • Member, Canadian Arbitration Committee, International Chamber of Commerce, International Court of Arbitration
  • Member, Proposals Committee, International Chamber of Commerce, International Court of Arbitration
  • Member, Canadian Bar Association
  • Member, Québec Bar
  • Member, International Bar Association, Young Arbitration Practitioners

Community Involvement

  • Director, Montreal General Hospital Foundation
  • Director, Elizabeth House
  • Director, Hay Foundation

Awards & Recognitions

  • Recognized in 2018 edition of Who’s Who Legal - Arbitration List of Future Leaders
  • Recognized as 2014 Lawyer of the Year: Civil and Commercial Litigation, Young Bar Association of Montreal 

Bar Admission & Education

  • Québec, 2008
  • BCL/LLB, McGill University, 2007
  • Certificate in Peruvian Law, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Lima, 2003
  • BA, Georgetown University, 1998