Orlagh O'Kelly
Orlagh O'Kelly
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Orlagh is a public law lawyer with extensive experience advising and representing both government and private clients.

At Field law Orlagh maintains a broad public sector practice, with a particular emphasis on federal matters. She approaches her practice with a keen understanding of government, working for several years in the Ottawa, Toronto and Edmonton Department of Justice offices. During this time, she represented the Attorney General, various ministries, federal tribunals and often advised high level clients within the bureaucracy, including assistant deputy ministers.

As a litigator, Orlagh is a confident advocate. Orlagh's litigation clients, include law enforcement agencies, professional organizations, employers, First Nations’ clients and private individuals. Orlagh provides strong representation to her clients, drawing on experience before all levels of Court in Ontario, the Federal Court trial and appeal divisions, the Alberta Provincial Court (criminal), Alberta Court of Queen's Bench, the Tax Court and various tribunals, including the Canadian International Trade Tribunal.
Orlagh has successfully litigated in diverse matters relating to:

  • Government Contract/ Procurement litigation 
  • Administrative law review of government/regulatory decisions
  • Indigenous governance
  • Aboriginal Treaty claims
  • Employment and human rights adjudications
  • Constitutional/Charter challenges
  • Malicious prosecution
  • Misfeasance in public office claims
  • Defence in Criminal prosecutions
  • International trade rulings
  • Refugee and Immigration appeals

As the lead of Field Law's Canadian Immigration practice, Orlagh offers strategic advice to employers and individuals to create cross-border business opportunities. This includes facilitating temporary or permanent employment or assisting in the transition from permanent residence to citizenship. As the daughter of first-generation immigrants, Orlagh believes in the importance of ensuring global mobility and has a first-hand appreciation of the importance of these applications to her clients.

Value to Clients

Clients appreciate Orlagh's ability to cut to the heart of legal issues and explain them precisely. She consistently finds pragmatic solutions to complex problems and is always driving towards the best outcomes for her clients. In doing so, Orlagh never loses sight of the human dimension to her clients’ problems and provides holistic support in navigating the legal system.

Outside the Office

Orlagh is always running. Whether it be in the river valley on the weekend, or through the city on her way home, or after her three boys once she gets there, Orlagh is in constant motion. Whenever she does sit down, she plays the harp or piano, but these days she mostly listens to Canada's great homegrown talent. In her previous life, she was a proud member of two varsity swim teams: the University of Toronto (co-captain) and the University of Calgary (national team champions).

Edmonton Bar Association
Canadian Bar Association
Canadian Bar Association, Alberta North Administrative Law
Executive Member
Advocate's Society
Criminal Lawyers Association
Edmonton Community Legal Clinic (Immigration/Civil)
Day Clinic Lawyer
Canadian Bar Association
Co-Chair, Women's Lawyer Forum, Alberta
Canadian Bar Association
Executive Member, Administrative Law/Immigration Law, Alberta
County of Vulcan v. Genesis Reciprocal Insurance Exchange, 2020 ABQB 93
R v Sylvester, 2020 ABPC 12
1395804 Ontario Ltd. (Blacklock's Reporter) v. Canada (Attorney General), 2017 FCA 185
1395804 Ontario Ltd. (Blacklock's Reporter) v. Canada (Attorney General), 2016 FC 1400
1395804 Ontario Ltd. (Blacklock's Reporter) v. Canada (Attorney General), 2016 FC 1255
Canada (Citizenship and Immigration) v. Runsewe, 2016 FC 974
Vakurov v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2016 FC 859
Canada (Attorney General) v. Tepper, 2016 FC 307
Federal-Mogul Canada Limited v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, AP-2012-034
Plato v. Canada (National Revenue), 2015 FCA 217
Bri-Chem v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, AP-2014-017
Evergreen Ecological Services Inc. v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, AP-2014-027
Southern Pacific Resource Corp. v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, AP-2014-028
McCready v. Canada (Revenue Agency), 2015 FC 887
Kassian Estate v. Canada (Attorney General), 2015 ONCA 544
Andrews v. Canada (Attorney General), 2015 FC 780
Plato v. Canada (National Revenue), 2014 FC 1230
Babinski v. Canada (Attorney General), 2014 ONSC 6493
Dorsey v. Canada (Attorney General), 2014 ONSC 6525
Wall v. Canada (Attorney General), 2014 ONSC 6524
Awadh v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2014 FC 521
Plato v Canada Revenue Agency, 2013 FC 348
Ali c. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2013 FC 335
Kassian Estate v. Canada (Attorney General), 2013 ONSC 892
Lakic v. Canada (Attorney General), 2013 FCA 4
Mohammad v. Canada (Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness), 2013 FC 24
Monterra Lumber Mills, Ltd. v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, 2012 CanLII 85175
Kassian Estate v. Canada (Attorney General), 2012 ONSC 4951
Curve Distribution Service Inc. v. President of the Canada Border Services Agency, AP-2011-023
Grusas v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2012 FC 733
Canadian Tire Corporation Ltd. v. Canada Border Services Agency, 2012 CanLII 36825
Williams v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2012 FC 119
Zakhour v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2011 FC 1178
Chaaban v. Canada (Correctional Service), 2011 FC 1033
August 2020 - 4 min read
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February 2020
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Winter 2020
2019 - A Year in Review Seminar Series
Join the Field Law Labour + Employment Group for our annual seminars featuring legal updates and practical challenges for management and employee groups.Part 1 has been approved for 1.75 CPD hours and Part 2 has been approved for 2.25 CPD hou...
January 2020
Spies and the Supreme Court: Charting a New Course for the Standard of Review
On December 19, 2019, the Supreme Court of Canada released its long-awaited trilogy of decisions that will significantly shift administrative law.Administrative law encompasses legal challenges to regulatory or government action, ranging from cabinet a...
December 2019
Cross-Border Workforce Trends in 2020
Workwise Newsletter
As we approach 2020, employers have increasing options for bringing skilled workers into Canada, while opportunities for employees to head south, to the United States, are increasingly limited. Field Law's Immigration Group projects three trends to...

"As a former Peace Officer I was subjected to a disciplinary investigation after making several disclosures against senior executives and other Peace Officers. Facing reprisal, it became apparent that I needed a law firm that managed higher profile law enforcement cases, information pertaining to whistleblowers, adjudications, civil litigation, and understood the inner workings of the Federal Government. Upon searching I became familiar with Field Law. 
Working with Orlagh O’Kelly I found she has the depth and expertise I specifically needed. Orlagh took the time to internalize my case and take action to immediately protect my interests. She consulted and weighed options in preparation for court matters and shared critical information with me. I never need to worry if she is prepared. She takes extraordinary steps to help ensure my rights are upheld. I know I am represented to the fullest extent possible. Orlagh takes a 360 approach in managing all the varied facets of my case and it’s not uncommon to receive emails from her on weekends and late in the evening regarding my case. 
To this day Orlagh offers assistance to ensure not only my rights are protected but that I remain healthy during and after this process. It is a human side that helps me and my family through this difficult time. For instance, after being diagnosed with a serious psychological workplace injury, Orlagh continually shared information and resources to help me get medical attention."


University of Toronto, Trinity College, 2007, Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
University of Calgary, 2010, Bachelor of Laws