Karen MacDonald's practice covers litigation in all areas of intellectual property, including patents, trade-marks, copyright, industrial designs and confidential information. She has appeared before the Federal Court, the Federal Court of Appeal, the British Columbia Supreme Court and the British Columbia Court of Appeal, and has extensive experience in advising clients on IP litigation strategies, conducting discoveries and cross-examinations, as well as preparing and presenting arguments to the court. She also has in-depth experience in preparing written documents such as pleadings, arguments, and cease and desist letters, as well as with conducting negotiations with opposing counsel.
Ms. MacDonald also has extensive experience in anti-counterfeiting enforcement work. She is heavily involved with developing and implementing anti-counterfeiting enforcement programs in Canada for major brand owners worldwide, operating in fields such as luxury goods and software development.
Trade-mark prosecution is another significant element of Ms. MacDonald's practice. She regularly files applications, prepares responses to office actions, and appears before the Trade-marks Opposition Board and in section 45 proceedings. She is also regularly involved in arranging for filing of foreign trade-marks.
She has worked with clients ranging in size from small companies to large multinational corporations and operating both in Canada and internationally.
LL.B., University of British Columbia , 2000
B.Sc. (Genetics and Cell Biology), University of British Columbia, 1997
- Annie Pui Kwan Lam v Chanel S. de R.L et al. 2016 FCA 111 – The Federal Court of Appeal remanded the matter back to the trial judge to re-determine and clarify an ambiguity in personal liability for Ms. Lam with respect to one of four acts of infringement, but nevertheless confirmed the appropriateness determination of counterfeiting cases by way of summary trial even where credibility issues exist, thereby permitting the trial judge to discard Ms. Lam’s evidence. The court also approved the use of a multiplier-based calculation of nominal damages and awarding significant punitive and exemplary damages in this type of case to deter such activities
- Chanel Limited et al v Lam Chan Kee Company Ltd et al, 2015 FC 1091 – Chanel was granted judgment of $380,000, including $250,000 in punitive and exemplary damages, against two corporations and an individual, with the court weighing and rejecting contradictory affidavit evidence from the defendants on a summary trial application
- Chanel S. de R.L. and Chanel Inc. v Jiang Chu, 2011 FC 1303 – Chanel was granted default judgment of over $320,000 in damages and punitive and exemplary damages, plus solicitor and client costs
- Louis Vuitton Malletier S.A. and Burberry Limited et al. v. Singga Enterprises et al., 2011 FC 776 – Louis Vuitton and Burberry were granted the highest award of damages and costs to date in Canada against purveyors of counterfeit goods, for a total of $2.5 million in damages, including punitive and exemplary damages, plus solicitor and client costs. Judgment was granted on the basis of the Federal Court summary trial rules in the first successful use of such rules
- Nintendo of America Inc. and Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. v COMPC Canada Trading Inc. and Qian (Kenneth) Chen (22 September 2009) Vancouver S082517 (BCSC) — The British Columbia Supreme Court upheld and granted liquidated damages of $75,000 for a breach of settlement agreement plus $100,000 in punitive and exemplary damages, where the defendants had agreed to cease selling "circumvention devices" and "circumvention software," which allow purchasers to play counterfeit video games by allowing them to bypass technological measures on video game consoles that prevent the playing of counterfeit games
- Louis Vuitton Malletier S.A. v 486353 B.C. Ltd et al., 2008 BCSC 799 — Louis Vuitton was granted judgment of a total of $980,000 in damages and punitive and exemplary damages, plus special costs, under the BCSC summary trial rules
- Louis Vuitton Malletier S.A. v Yang et al., 2008 FC 45 — The defendants applied to set aside the decision in 2007 FC 1179 (see below). The motion was denied and 2007 FC 1179 was upheld
- Louis Vuitton Malletier S.A. v Yang et al., 2007 FC 1179 — Louis Vuitton was granted damages, punitive and exemplary damages and solicitor and client costs totaling $263,699, by way of default judgment
- British Columbia 2001
- Canada (patents) 2003
- Canada (trade-marks) 2002
Rankings and recognitions
- Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, (2016-2017): recommended in Intellectual Property
- 2017 Best Lawyers in Canada: Recognized leading lawyer in the area of Intellectual Property Law
- 2016 World's Leading Trademark Professionals: WTR 1000: Silver Band for Individuals: Anti-Counterfeiting; Bronze Band for Individuals: Enforcement and Litigation
- 2016 Best Lawyers in Canada: Recognized leading lawyer in the area of Intellectual Property Law
- Expert Guides – Guide to the World's Leading Trade Mark Law Practitioners: Recognized as a leading practitioner in the area of Trade Mark
Guide to the World’s Leading Women in Business Law: selected to appear in the 2012, 2014, and 2015 edition
The Canadian government has set down June 17, 2019, as the date when the most significant changes to Canada’s trademark law in over 50 years will finally be implemented..
November 19, 2018
The Federal Court of Appeal earlier this year remitted a decision to the Federal Court to clarify an ambiguity in a judgment issued on summary trial relating to recidivist sale of counterfeit Chanel merchandise..
September 07, 2016
Karen MacDonald comments that the large amount of counterfeit goods that are sold in Canada every year hurts our economy..
April 23, 2018
Louis Vuitton lawsuit could help other brands fight counterfeiting: experts.
May 01, 2017