Michael Cochrane is a nationally recognized lawyer practicing in Toronto at Brauti, Thorning LLP (www.btlegal.ca) , an author and novelist. He is best known for his work in the area of family law and is the author of the best selling book Surviving Your Divorce: A Guide to Canadian Family Law, currently in its sixth edition. He has written extensively in the area of family law for lawyers and the general public on the subjects of separation, divorce, mediation, marriage contracts and cohabitation agreements. He has long been an advocate for a more humane process for separating families. His diverse legal background includes chairing the Ontario government’s multi-stakeholder consultations which led to the creation of the Class Proceedings Act and Ontario’s groundbreaking Environmental Bill of Rights.
He has lectured at a number of Ontario universities including the University of Ottawa Common Law program, Osgoode Hall Law School, Carleton University Department of Law and Ryerson University (now known as The Toronto Metropolitan University) in areas as diverse as Public Law, Property Law, Legal Institutions, Environmental Law and Wills and Estates. His litigation practice has included being one of a few lawyers in Canada to litigate disputes over multi-million dollar lottery winnings. He spent a year in Washington DC on a fellowship with the National Association of Attorneys General and while there edited a text on alternative dispute resolution.
He was the host of BNN’s Strictly Legal for three seasons. This program was a national weekly live phone-in show that provided Canadians with essential public legal information in a variety of areas. His book Strictly Legal: Things You Absolutely Need to Know About Canadian Law summarized the content of those programs.
A fan of golf and golf history Michael did primary research on the life and times of George Lyon and his family. A Canadian George Lyon was the first person to win a gold medal for golf. This accomplishment was achieved at the 1904 Summer Olympics held in St. Louis at the same time as the famous World’s Fair. George Lyon’s incredible life story had never been told until Michael’s book, Olympic Lyon: The Untold Story of the Last Gold Medal for Golf was published just in time for the return of golf at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
And now Michael has published his first full novel, Night Soil – the story of divorce lawyer Andrew Bierce Q.C.and his clients. As Bierce likes to say, “I’m a divorce lawyer. You’re not supposed to like me.” Don’t worry you won’t. His methods deliver results for his angry and hurt clients but at what cost?