Jacqueline Swaisland, B.A., LL.B., LL.M.

Jacqueline Swaisland's practice encompasses all areas of Canadian citizenship, immigration and refugee law with a focus on complex cases and litigation. She is a Fulbright Scholar with a masters degree in law from Harvard University, a law degree from Queen's University and a bachelor's degree (with honours) from the University of Guelph. Prior to joining the firm, Jacqueline clerked at the Federal Court of Appeal of Canada and worked at the Constitutional Law Branch of the Ontario Attorney General's Office.

Jacqueline represents her clients at all levels of Court and has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada on six occasions. In addition, Jacqueline regularly represents clients before the Refugee Board and Immigration Appeal Division. Her practice also involves helping clients to put together family sponsorship applications, humanitarian and compassionate applications, pre-removal risk assessments, citizenship applications and a variety of economic immigration applications and work permits.

In recognition of her outstanding advocacy and her commitment to social justice, Jacqueline was presented with the Arleen Goss Young Advocates' Award by the Advocates' Society, an award that is only given to one lawyer every other year. Jacqueline was also recognized as a "Precedent-Setter" by Precedent Magazine in May 2016.

Jacqueline is an adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School where she teaches a course on immigration and refugee law to upper year students. She is also developing the administrative law module for the Law Practice Program at Ryerson University and has previously taught immigration and refugee law at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law. Jacqueline is co-author of two books: “Inadmissible to Canada: the Legal Barriers to Canadian Immigration” and "Canada's Refugee Determination Process: A Guide to the Post Bill C-31 Era" both published by Lexis Nexis.

Jacqueline is regularly invited to speak at conferences both in Toronto and across the country. She has been interviewed nationally on CBC television and radio, quoted in The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail and The National Post and is a regular commentator in the Law Times and The Lawyers Weekly.

Jacqueline is also a co-founder and the Toronto coordinator of the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program, a national program that trains lawyers to assist groups seeking to privately sponsor refugees. The organization has trained more than 1300 lawyers in 11 cities who are committed to assisting sponsor groups to fill out private sponsorship applications for refugees for free. In recognition of her oustanding work with refugees, Jacqueline was recognized with a CARLA award by the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers.

Professional Memberships and Activities

  • Member, The Law Society of Upper Canada
  • Member, Refugee Lawyers’ Association
  • Member, Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers
  • Member, Refugee Law Panel, Legal Aid Ontario

A Few Notable Cases Jacqueline Has Been Involved With:

  • Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care v. Canada (Attorney General), [2015] 2 F.C.R. 267
  • Ezokola v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2013 SCC 40
  • Agraira v. Canada (Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness), 2013 SCC 36
  • A.M.R.I. v. K.E.R., 2011 ONCA 417
  • Canada (Prime Minister) v. Khadr, 2010 SCC 3
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