Overholt Law LLP welcomes Fiona Wong – April 3, 2023
Overholt Law LLP is pleased to announce that Fiona Wong has joined us as an Associate Lawyer.
Fiona Wong is an associate at Overholt LLP and practices in the firm’s core areas of employment, civil litigation, and human rights law. She has advised clients appearing before the Civil Resolution Tribunal and represented clients at the BC Provincial Court and BC Supreme Court. In doing so, she draws from her experiences of working at national full-service and employment firms. Fiona is from Hong Kong and is pleased to assist clients in Cantonese where required. She looks forward to advising both employee and employer clients on employment-related matters at Overholt LLP.
Outside of work, she is the Vice President, Marketing of the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers BC, where she helped produce an award-winning documentary, But I Look Like a Lawyer, and launched a FACL BC podcast featuring Asian-Canadian lawyers on a monthly basis. Before embarking on her legal career, Fiona worked as a flight attendant.
Fiona obtained her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Victoria and her Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from the University of British Columbia. While in law school, Fiona served on the faculty’s admissions committee and founded the First Generation Network at the University of Victoria, an organization dedicated to reducing barriers for students who are first in their family to attend post-secondary educational institutions. Fiona’s passion for labour and employment law started while working as a client service representative at WorkSafeBC (Workers’ Compensation Board), where she assisted injured workers with initiating WorkSafeBC claims. As a student, Fiona participated in the Hicks Morley Labour Moot, and the rest is history.
Fiona can be reached at 604-676-4183 or at [email protected]
Graham Nattress joins Partnership – February 8, 2023
Overholt Law LLP is pleased to announce that Graham Nattress has joined our Partnership.
Graham first joined Overholt Law LLP as Associate Counsel in July 2022 and quickly became an integral part of the firm.
Prior to joining Overholt Law LLP, Graham worked in private practice, followed by over 25 years working in-house with national organizations where he developed considerable litigation experience defending employment, human rights, and disability claims across Canada.
After 21 years as legal counsel with Great West Life, Graham became the Assistant Vice President of Human Resources for the Canadian division of Great West Life, which is now Canada Life. In that role, Graham obtained significant experience in human resources management, by advising on and drafting a wide range of policies necessary for a large employer operating in multiple jurisdictions and investigating a variety of employee complaints.
After leaving Great West Life, Graham accepted a position as Canadian Counsel for a large multi-national travel company where he addressed the many challenges of a large employer during the pandemic.
Employee benefits, including Life and Disability Insurance has become an extremely important element of the compensation paid to employees. It is also an area where complex litigation can arise. As legal counsel with Great West Life, Graham regularly advised on life and disability insurance matters.
Claims of discrimination in employment on the basis of physical and mental disability have become very common in part due to the continually evolving duty to accommodate. Legal advice on this subject is increasingly important to employers. Graham has unique experience in this area from his experience with large companies making him a great resource and advisor to human resources professionals.
Graham is a fantastic addition to our team, and has quickly gained the trust of our clients. We are thrilled to welcome him to the Partnership.
Graham can be reached at (604) 676-4188 or at [email protected].
Announcing Overholt Law LLP – January 1, 2021
Since June 18, 2012, Overholt Law LLP has been a trusted workplace law and litigation boutique in downtown Vancouver. Today, we are excited to announce that Preston Parsons and Jennifer Kwok have joined Carman J. Overholt, K.C. to form Overholt Law LLP, effective January 1, 2021.
Before founding Overholt Law LLP, Carman (he/him/his) practiced for 26 years in two large Vancouver law firms including a national law firm, where he was an equity partner and Chair of its Employment and Labour Relations Practice Group for many years. His practice was and continues to encompass all areas of workplace law and commercial litigation. He has appeared before the BC Supreme Court and Court of Appeal in numerous notable cases including the defence of an employment law class action in the mining sector. Carman has advised and represented clients in nearly every industry in the course of his career.
Throughout his years of practice, Carman served the legal community in several significant ways, including as President of the BC Branch of the Canadian Bar Association (the “CBABC”) and as Chair/Co-Chair of the Continuing Legal Education BC Society’s annual Employment Law Conference. Working with many lawyers, Carman was also the founding Chair and President of Pro Bono Law of BC, which is now Access Pro Bono. After his service to the CBABC, Carman committed himself to coaching hockey and soccer, and to volunteering his service to the West Vancouver Otters Swim Club. That service included 10 years on the Board of Directors of the Club, 4 years of which he served as its President.
When Carman started Overholt Law LLP, the firm consisted of himself and one paralegal. Seven months later – in January 2013 – Carman was joined by Preston Parsons and Jennifer Kwok. Today, the team at Overholt Law LLP consists of 6 lawyers, an articled student, and 6 staff, and is committed to carrying on the values of Overholt Law LLP, which include: a commitment to our clients, to practicing according to the highest standards of the legal profession, diversity, and service to our communities.
Preston Parsons (he/him/his) hails originally from a farm in Alberta, but moved to the West Coast in 2007. He graduated from the UBC Faculty of Law in 2010. Collectively, he has summered, articled, and practiced in downtown Vancouver since 2009, first at a large regional firm, and then at a mid-size class action litigation boutique, before joining Overholt Law LLP. Preston has spent the vast majority of his time at the bar practicing in all areas of workplace law, including advising and representing employers and employees in a variety of industries, and before various court and administrative forums. In the past few years, Preston has developed a growing practice defending professionals in disciplinary proceedings before their associations and regulatory bodies.
Preston is an accomplished figure skater and coach. In addition, he too has demonstrated a true commitment to the legal community through various positions with the CBABC and CBA National that began while he was in law school. His early service to the CBA was recognized with the CBA National Edward K. Rowan Legg Award for exemplary service as a student member, and his contributions had only just begun. Preston would go on to serve on the executive of the CBABC SOGIC Section for 6 years, including 4 years as its Co-Chair, championing LGBTQ2S+ issues in the profession and beyond. He also served on the CBA National Young Lawyers Executive for 5 years, including 1 year as the National Chair of the CBA Young Lawyers Section during which time he represented the CBA with trips to the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Preston was also the founding Vice-President/Chair of the Vancouver Region of Start Proud, a national organization dedicated to the professional development of LGBTQ2S+ students and young professionals. He held that role for over 3 years. Preston is currently in his 6th year as an Elected Vancouver County Representative of the CBABC.
Jennifer Kwok (she/her/hers) is a graduate of the Faculty of Law at the University of Alberta. She clerked for the Federal Court of Canada prior to articling in Vancouver with a national law firm. After practicing for a period of time, Jennifer left the legal profession to join the Vancouver Police Department where she was a patrol constable for almost 7 years. Upon deciding to return to the practice of Law, Jennifer joined Overholt Law LLP in early 2013. Since joining Overholt Law LLP, Jennifer has developed many strong relationships with our clients who appreciate her practical and straightforward advice on all types of issues that arise in the workplace, including advising clients on workplace harassment, discrimination, and accommodation matters, as well as conducting independent workplace complaint investigations. Jennifer strongly believes that the most effective advocacy occurs when there is trust in the lawyer/client relationship, and as such she takes great care in getting to know our clients, and ensuring that her advice fits their specific needs and objectives.
Outside of her legal practice, Jennifer is a competitive Ultimate player, and has represented Canada in a number of World Championships, as well as the World Games. She believes strongly in volunteerism, the power of sport, particularly in the lives of young women, and is currently the coach of the women’s UBC Ultimate Sports Club.
Together, we commence this new chapter in our practice very grateful for the support of the people we work with, our clients, and the legal community.
Although 2020 was a challenging year for all of us, we begin 2021 with excitement for the future. We look forward to working with you.