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Profiles of Excellence: Drysdale Bacon McStravick LLP

The Tri-Cities law firm is committed to deliver the best quality of legal service to the community

The firm of Drysdale Bacon McStravick had its origin in 1974 with its founding principal, John Parks. Don Drysdale joined the firm after being called to the bar in September of 1976. At the time, they were the only law firm in central Coquitlam. The Austin Heights area was the business centre of Coquitlam and was also the site of the city hall.

Initially, the firm focused only on residential real estate. Over the first five years, the firm expanded its area of practice to become a full service law firm providing legal services in virtually every area of law, except criminal matters.

Joe McStravick joined the predecessor firm as an articling student in 1982 and became a partner in 1986.

Chris Bacon joined the predecessor firm in 1993 after articling in B.C., and then, practiced for eight years in Toronto and became a partner in 1995.

In 2003, Drysdale, Bacon and McStravick formed a new partnership branded Drysdale Bacon McStravick.

Both McStravick and Bacon practice in the litigation department of the firm.

Richard Rainey joined the partnership in 2014 after practicing with major downtown Vancouver law firms and as a sole practitioner in Coquitlam. Rainey now practices as a solicitor in corporate commercial areas and real estate property developments.

As the business community grew in the Tri-City area, the focus of the firm was redirected to provide full-service corporate and commercial legal work. They currently represent over 800 companies as their registered office. 

Reflecting the demographics of the community with its aging population, the estate planning and probate practice has become a major area of the firm’s work. The imposition of “No Fault” by ICBC has had a substantial impact on the firm requiring the litigation department to expand the areas in which the litigation group provides service.

Again, reflecting the aging population, estate litigation has become an increasingly significant area of practice. Regrettably, a large percentage of people put little or no thought in preparing an effective estate plan, the result of which tends to lead to legal disputes among beneficiaries. The old adage “where there’s a will, there’s a way” should be re-written to “where there’s a will, there’s a lawsuit.”

The law firm currently has nine lawyers and two articling students, and feels it is their professional obligation to provide to newly graduated law students the opportunity to enter the legal profession. A significant number of the students stay with the firm after concluding their articles.

The firm also has support staff of about thirty employees and has a policy of hiring within their community, and teaching and grooming the support staff to develop expertise in their area of law. A large number of their support staff started as receptionists and were then moved up into various areas of the practice. Their longest tenured staff member (of 46 years) has been with the firm just one year longer than Don Drysdale (45 years).

Since its inception, the firm has been heavily involved in public legal education, providing lectures in various areas of law through cooperation with School District 43, libraries and various senior centres in the community, in particular Dogwood Pavilion.

Drysdale also volunteers at Dogwood Pavilion one afternoon a month to provide pro bono legal advice to seniors, but since COVID hit, this has been put on hold. The pandemic had a significant negative financial impact on the firm as the courts were closed for several months, however, since their re-opening, the firm has managed to overcome that difficult period. 

Drysdale Bacon McStravick LLP intends to continue to serve their community with all of the legal services required by the public. They take pride in the quality of work provided by the firm and hope to continue to expand their office to have more junior lawyers and support staff. They are committed to deliver the best quality of legal service to the community on a time and cost sensitive basis. 

To learn more about Drysdale Bacon McStravick LLP, visit