Malliha Wilson is a Canadian-Tamil litigator and Special Legal Advisor at the Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO). She specializes in human rights, indigenous, constitutional, corporate and labour law, and other complex litigation.
Wilson served as the Assistant Deputy Attorney General of the Government of Ontario from April 2008-November 2016. She was Senior Appellate Litigation Counsel with the Ontario Government for more than 30 years, participating in over 20 notable cases at the Supreme Court of Canada and the Ontario Court of Appeal. Throughout her career she has been a champion of diversity and inclusion.
Early life and family
Malliha Wilson is the daughter of Alfred Jeyaratnam Wilson and Susili Wilson, whose father was S. J. V. Chelvanayakam. She has two siblings, Maithili and Kumanan, is married to Helder Travassos and has a daughter (Melanie).
Wilson completed her undergraduate degree at the McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. She completed her law degree at Osgoode Hall Law School at York University in Toronto, Ontario in 1981.
Wilson began her career in the Ontario Public Service in 1987, during a time in which there were very few lawyers of diverse backgrounds.
From 2000-2004 she served as the Legal Director for the Ministry of Labour, from 2004-2008 as the Director of the Crown Law Office-Civil, and then became the Assistant Deputy Attorney General. Upon concluding an 8-year term in that role, Wilson became Special Legal Advisor at the Investment Management Corporation of Ontario.
Her significant accomplishments, and work to promote diversity and inclusion, were recognized in 2009 by the South Asian Bar Association with a Distinguished Career Award, in 2012 by her alma matter, Osgoode Hall Law School, with a Gold Key Award for the Public Sector, and in 2015 by the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers with a Lawyer of Distinction Award.
Wilson currently serves on the Advisory Board of the Canadian Tamil Professionals’ Association. the Board of the Churchill Society for the Advancement of Parliamentary Democracy. the Board of the Osgoode Hall Law School Alumni Association and the Editorial Board of The Philippe Kirsch Institute.
Supreme Court of Canada Cases
- Carter v. Canada, 2016 SCC 4
- John Doe v Ontario (Finance), 2014 SCC 36
- Bruno Appliance and Furniture, Inc v Hryniak, 2014 SCC 8
- Grassy Narrows First Nations v. Ontario (Natural Resources) 2014 SCC 48
- Her Majesty the Queen v Criminal Lawyers’ Association of Ontario, 2013 SCC 43
- Penner v Niagara (Regional Police Services Board), 2013 SCC 19
- Antrim Truck Centre Ltd v Ontario (Transportation), 2013 SCC 13
- Lax Kw'alaams Indian Band v Canada (Attorney General), 2011 SCC 56
- R v Imperial Tobacco Canada Ltd, 2011 SCC 42
Ontario Court of Appeal Cases
- Parsons v Ontario, 2015 ONCA 158
- Ontario Public Service Employees Union v Ontario (Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services), 2013 ONCA 406
- Combined Air Mechanical Services Inc v Flesch (C51986); Mauldin v Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP (C52912); Bruno Appliance and Furniture Inc v Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP (C52913); 394 Lakeshore Oakville Holdings Inc v Misek (C53035); Parker v Casalese (C53395), 2011 ONCA 764
- R v Imona-Russel, 2011 ONCA 303
Ontario Court of Justice Cases
- Hamilton Health Sciences Corp. v DH 2015 ONCJ 229
Works and publications
Over the course of her career, Wilson has written and delivered more than 40 papers and presentations.