Stikeman Elliott and five other Canadian law firms collaborate on blockchain pilot project to develop smart contracts

May 21, 2019
Six Canadian law firms recently teamed up to collaborate on a cutting edge pilot project which would create an intricate ‘smart contract’ on the Ethereum blockchain. Stikeman Elliott and the other law firms involved, set out to investigate the legal benefits of blockchain in the legal sector and to explore how law firms could leverage this new technology to better serve clients. In addition to Stikeman Elliott, the five other firms involved in this project were Bennett Jones LLP, Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP, Fasken Martineau Dumoulin LLP and Norton Rose Fulbright LLP.

In coordination with blockchain consultancy firm GenesisB, the participating law firms developed an innovative legal template on the Ethereum blockchain over a six-month period. This template was produced over OpenLaw’s smart contract platform which the law-focused blockchain startup developed to automate clerical legal tasks.

As a result of this project, the participating law firms and GenesisB were able to successfully create a merger and acquisition escrow agreement. According to OpenLaw’s Medium post, this agreement involved “coding several clauses using smart contract technology. The executed agreement automated issues related to indemnification claims, working-capital payouts and basic disputes using a pseudo-stable coin”.

Read OpenLaw’s full Medium post on this pilot project entitled “Leading Canadian Law Firms Collaborate on Blockchain Based Smart Contract Project”.