Warda Shazadi Meighen, HBA, JD, MSc

Warda is a refugee and immigration lawyer. She is also an adjunct professor of refugee law at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Warda chairs the International Justice Circle at Human Rights Watch Canada and serves on the executive committee of Human Rights Watch Canada.

Warda is called to the Ontario and New York bars. She previously worked at Shearman & Sterling in New York. After practicing law for several years, she pursued further studies at the University of Oxford, where she focused on refugee, human rights and international law. She has appeared before the Federal Court as well as the Supreme Court of Canada.

Warda obtained her undergraduate and law degrees at the University of Toronto and began her legal career at McCarthy T├ętrault in Toronto. Warda has worked with the United Nations Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Tanzania, where she was part of the prosecution team in connection with the Rwandan genocide. She was also involved with publication of internal guidance for the United Nations.

From 2015-2017, Warda also served as the Co-Editor-in-Chief for the Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration, where she co-managed a team of 10 editors tasked with publishing scholarship that reflects the global state of forced migration.

She is interested in all aspects of immigration, refugee and human rights law and regularly publishes in the area.

Recent publications:

  • Co-authored An Analysis of Post-Ezokola and JS Jurisprudence on Exclusion, Criminalization of Migration: Context and Consequences, eds. Idil Atak, James C. Simeon, McGill-Queen's University Press, 2018
  • Criticism of the Global Migration Pact misses the mark, The Toronto Star Op-Ed, December 30, 2018
  • Co-authored M-103: Canadian Muslims need this showing of solidarity, Globe and Mail Op-Ed, February 19, 2017
  • Co-authored The 2015 Canadian Federal Election and the Discourse Surrounding Migrants: An UnCanadian Anomaly? Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration 5(2) 2015
  • A General Overview of the New Citizenship Rules, Carswell, ImmQuest Volume 11 (7) 2015
  • Reduced Age of Dependency, Carswell, ImmQuest Volume 10 (9) 2014


  • Dean's Bronze Scholar in Law
  • University of Oxford Refugee Studies Centre Grant
  • University of Oxford STAR Grant St Antony's College
  • New York Bar Association Empire State Counsel Honoree Award for Contribution to Pro Bono Work
  • Golden Key Scholar
  • Imasco Leadership Award
  • Dean's List Scholar (five-time recipient)
  • Torys Public Interest Award
  • Fasken Martineau DuMoulin Prize in Public Law
  • McCarthy T├ętrault Prize for Academic Excellence
  • Entrance Scholarship for Law
  • Victoria College Regents Scholarship for Arts and Social Sciences (three-time recipient)
  • Victoria College Regents Scholarship for Science and Mathematics

Professional Memberships and Activities

  • Member, The Law Society of Upper Canada
  • Member, New York Bar Association
  • Member, Refugee Lawyers Association
  • Member, Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers
Barrister & Solicitor, Attorney
416-482-6501, ext. 264