Stephanie J. Kalinowski

Stephanie Kalinowski Headshot

Partner, Toronto
Direct: 416.864.7263
Main: 416.362.1011
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Year of Call: Ontario, 1998
  • Biography

As a pension and benefits lawyer in Hicks Morley’s Toronto office, Stephanie advises employers, plan administrators and service providers on all regulatory, governance, compliance and tax matters affecting pension, retirement and group benefit plans as well as incentive plans, compensation matters and cross-border issues.

Stephanie is the chair of the firm’s Pension, Benefits and Executive Compensation Practice Group. She has recently been advising on strategic, compliance, and implementation issues associated with CAAT pension plan participation and mergers, correction of enrollment and contribution errors in pension plans, employment insurance top-up plans, buy-in annuity purchases, delegated investment mandates, plan mergers and asset transfers, and pension and benefits issues arising out of corporate spin-offs. She represented an employer in the negotiation and establishment of a jointly sponsored pension plan in a unionized environment and is currently advising on the negotiation and implementation of province-wide Employee Life and Health Trusts. She regularly advises employers on the tax treatment and wording of annual cash and equity incentive plans as well as various group benefit plans and perquisites. She frequently assists pension plan administrators with managing the issues arising out of pension division following marriage breakdown and has advised on pension and benefit issues in corporate insolvencies.

Stephanie has appeared before the Financial Services Tribunal, the Ontario Superior Court and the Court of Appeal for Ontario.

She is currently the co-chair of the firm’s United Way campaign and has climbed the CN Tower several times in fewer than 18 minutes.

Awards & Recognition

Association of Canadian Pension Management
Don Ireland Award for Exceptional Volunteerism (2022); ACPM Council Award (2019)

The Best Lawyers in Canada™ (2018–2023)
Employee Benefits Law

Who's Who Legal – Global Leader (2020–2022)
Pensions & Benefits Law

Chambers Canada – Band 3 (2023); Band 4 (2020–2022)
Pensions & Benefits

Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory (2018–2023)
Pensions & Employee Benefits (Consistently Recommended)

Who's Who Legal – National Leader, Canada (2020–2022)
Labour, Employment & Benefits Law

Who's Who Legal (2019)
Pensions & Benefits Law

The Legal 500 Canada (2018–2019)
Pensions & Benefits Law

Memberships & Affiliations

Association of Canadian Pension Management (ACPM) – Chair, National Policy Committee

Association of Canadian Pension Management (ACPM) – Past-Chair, Ontario Regional Council

Canada Revenue Agency’s former Pension Advisory Committee (PAC) – Member (2005–2006)

Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers (CACE) – Member

Canadian Bar Association – Member

Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute (CPBI) – Member

Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) – Pension Legal Advisory Committee Member

International Pension and Employee Benefits Lawyers Association (IPEBLA) – Member

Ontario Bar Association – Member (Pension and Benefits and Taxation); Former Executive Member (Chair of Continuing Education Committee, Pensions & Benefits section) (2003–2006)

Select Publications & Presentations

“Legal Perspectives 2022–2023” 2022 ACPM National Conference: A Climate for Innovation – Exploring Sustainable Retirement, St. John’s, NL (September 28, 2022)

“Pension and Retirement Assets Upon Relationship Breakdown” Osgoode Hall Law School Professional Development (April 5, 2022)

“Defined Contribution Plans: The CAP Guidelines and CAPSA DC Plans Guidelines” Osgoode Certificate in Pension Law (February 9, 2022)

“Capital Accumulation Plans – From Capital Accumulation to Pension Income” The Association of Canadian Pension Management National Conference, Moderator (September 14, 2021)

“Key 2020 Pension Developments and What to Expect for 2021” The Association of Canadian Pension Management, Moderator (March 4, 2021)

“The Retirement Savings System” Osgoode Certificate in Pension Law (February 10, 2021)

“Defined Contribution Plans: The CAP Guidelines and CAPSA DC Plans Guidelines” Osgoode Certificate in Pension Law (February 5, 2020)


Queen’s University, LL.B., B.A.