Toronto Family Lawyer Joanna Radbord

Joanna Radbord, LSM


Joanna Radbord is a partner with the firm of Martha McCarthy & Company LLP in Toronto. Her practice focuses on family law and constitutional litigation.

Joanna was awarded the Canadian Bar Association Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Conference Hero Award in 2008 for her contributions to LGBTTQ communities. In 2017, she received the Law Society Medal for exceptional career achievements and contributions to her community in the areas of LGBTQ rights, family law, constitutional and human rights, and was the winner of a Lexpert Zenith Award: Celebrating Women in Law.

Practising in all areas of family law, for diverse families, Joanna has been involved in the leading cases expanding recognition for LGBTQ families including spousal status for same-sex couples (M v H), equal marriage (Halpern), trans parenting (Forrester), birth registration (Rutherford), and three parent recognition (AA v BB). Joanna was counsel to the LGBTQ families in Grand v. Ontario. She negotiated an interim order in which the Attorney General conceded the unconstitutionality of the Children’s Law Reform Act. Joanna then worked extensively with government and stakeholders on Bill 28, the All Families are Equal Act, which reconceptualised parentage in Ontario.

Joanna was recently intervener counsel on behalf of Family Alliance Ontario and the Sherbourne Health Centre in Coates v Watson, which challenges the constitutionality of s. 31 of the Family Law Act. Joanna has been intervener counsel in numerous other equality cases, including TWU v LSUC, Boston, Withler, and Rick.

A frequent writer and speaker on family law and equality issues, Joanna is a member of The Advocates’ Society, the Canadian Bar Association, and the Legal Aid Ontario Family Law Advisory Committee, and sits on the Advisory Board of the Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement (MIRCI) and its journal.

Joanna is Adjunct Professor and a former McMurtry Fellow at Osgoode Hall Law School.

Zenith Award 2017