My Migration to Canada, Lawyer Daljit Nirman
B.Sc, LL.B., DLL, LL.M. Barrister & Solicitor & Adjunct Lecturer (Law)
I immigrated to Canada at the age of 38 from New Delhi, India, along with my wife and two minor sons. In India, we thrived as professionals in our fields. I worked as a lawyer and rose to a senior management position in corporate legal affairs, in the largest financial institution in the country; I had held this position for over twelve years, and I was responsible for handling corporate affairs, human resources management, legal proceedings, and liaisons with government and regulators, in addition to teaching as visiting faculty in various post-secondary institutions. Meanwhile, my wife was employed as a senior accountant with the Government of India.
Despite this, we decided that Canada offered the most promising future for our family – a progressive, multicultural nation welcoming to immigrants, especially professionals such as ourselves. On arriving in Canada in 2000, we settled initially in Toronto, where we were both able to obtain various temporary positions in government. I applied to LL.M. programs, in order to upgrade my legal skills and pursue licensing to practice in Canada. In August 2001 I was accepted by the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law.
Unfortunately, this required certain sacrifices – in order for me to attend my studies, we had to live in cramped quarters, and send the children to be cared for by their grandparents in India. My wife worked as an accounts receivable clerk with Costco to support us at this time.
In 2002, after successfully completing my LL.M., I continued my studies to complete equivalence requirements for an LL.B.; I was able to do this, write my bar exams and go through the articling process rapidly, and I was called to the Ontario bar in 2004. I worked as an associate lawyer and partner in small firms, before departing to open my own practice in 2008.
Since then I have practiced through my own firm, Nirman’s Law Professional Corporation, and serving Ottawa’s various communities with attentive and committed distinction. Working in immigration, corporate/commercial, administrative, estates and real estate law, I have been able to help clients and the community navigate through complex regulatory frameworks and protect their most important rights. I am also Adjunct Lecturer ( Law) and my teaching focus on Rules of Professional Conduct, Corporate Governance and Ethics.
I have also had the privilege of serving as immigration Duty Counsel to Legal Aid Ontario, and lent my support to various organizations such as the United Way, University of Ottawa Heart Institute; Plan Canada and the Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization (OCISO) with monetary contributions and pro bono work. As well, I have volunteered my expertise to the City of Ottawa’s Ethnic & Diversity Advisory Committee, the Mario Dewar Scholarship Fund, and the India-Canada Association, and served as a director to professional and community bodies such as the Indo-Canada Ottawa Business Chamber, the North-American South Asian Bar Association, and OCISO.
Throughout the past fifteen years, I have committed myself to advocacy for and service to the community at all levels, and am most grateful for the opportunities Canada has provided to me and my entire family. My journey in Canada has been a challenging one, but I am pleased to have become part of this great nation and give so much back to my fellow citizens.