Natalie Raffoul

Managing Partner
[email protected]
613.521.8844 x 102

Natalie Raffoul is our managing partner and a world-renowned expert in the patenting of software, business methods, artificial intelligence and machine learning, and the legal issues surrounding such subject matter.  She is consistently ranked among the world’s leading patent practitioners by The World Leading Patent Professional’s IAM Patent 1000 publication annually since 2014, and in 2017, shortlisted as one of seven (7) most Highly Recommended patent prosecutors in Canada, and once again shortlisted in 2019.  In 2018, she was recognized in the Who’s Who Legal as a world leading expert for Patents in Canada and by Acquisition International, The Voice of Corporate Finance, as the Most Influential Woman in Patent & Trademark Law in Ottawa.  As early as 2015, Ms. Raffoul was recognized by Lawyer Monthly in the Women in Law Awards as the Top Female Patent Lawyer in Canada, and by Corporate LiveWire as the Patent Lawyer of the Year in Canada.

Natalie’s success stems in large part from a passion for spurring innovation in the tech sector since her career start in 2000.  Ms. Raffoul works closely with companies to develop and refine IP procurement strategies within the context of a particular company’s business goals and environment.  She is a regular lecturer at the Sprott School of Business (Carleton University) and is a faculty member for the Ottawa Lead To Win entrepreneurship program.  She has also been invited to speak at the Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC) on such noteworthy cases as the Amazon decision issued by the Federal Court of Appeal.  Natalie is also Director of the joint IPIC/McGill Understanding Patents Course, and lectures on the patenting of software and business methods, as well as on international patent practice.

Ms. Raffoul’s expertise has led to her being appointed to the Ontario government’s only Expert Panel on Commercializing IP in Ontario, which is being led by Chair Jim Balsillie, ex-CEO of BlackBerry.

Ms. Raffoul specializes in filing and prosecuting patent and design applications for her Canadian clients worldwide.  She provides advice to her clients, in English and in French, on worldwide patent filing strategies and portfolio management that include trade secret considerations.  Her technology expertise includes: electronics, communications and networking, manufacturing, consumer products, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and mobile applications.

As a lawyer, Natalie also works with her clients on IP enforcement issues in the pre-litigation context.  She has negotiated numerous successful agreements for her clients, that cover IP rights in Canada and globally.  She is also experienced in drafting customized IP ownership agreements, software license and service agreements, end-user license agreements (EULAs), Material transfer agreements (MTAs), and non-disclosure agreements (NDAs).

Natalie holds a degree in electrical engineering from Western University (London, Canada) and a Juris Doctor in law from Queen’s University (Kingston, Canada).  She is also a registered patent agent.

Her community involvement includes volunteer positions with a variety of charities, such as the Caring and Sharing Exchange as Chair of the Campaign Cabinet, and as a director on numerous boards, including the Ottawa Hospital Foundation Board.  In 2015, Natalie was awarded the Ottawa Business Journal’s Top Forty Under 40 award, which recognizes an elite group of business people under the age of 40 who are committed to business excellence, professional expertise and community giving.  In 2016, she was selected as a Finalist for Ottawa’s Businesswoman of the Year Award (BYA), one of the three professional women being recognized for their outstanding business achievements.


  • B.E.Sc. (Electrical), University of Western Ontario
  • J.D. (Law), Queen’s University
  • Registered Canadian Patent Agent
  • Registered U.S. Patent Agent
  • P.Eng., Professional Engineer of Ontario
  • Barrister & Solicitor (Ontario)
  • Notary Public (Ontario)


  • Appointment to the Ontario government Expert Panel on Commercializing IP in Ontario, Chaired by Jim Balsillie, ex-CEO of BlackBerry – April, 2019 to present
  • Ottawa Hospital Foundation, Chair of Governance Committee, Appointed in 2019, and Board Member since 2017
  • Licensing Executive Society International (LESI) Education Committee, Co-Chair (2018 – )
  • McGill/IPIC, Co-Chair of Intellectual Property Courses on Patents, Trademarks, and Copyright, Montreal (2018 – )
  • AIPPI, Green Technology Standing Committee, Chair (2018 – ), Secretary (2016 – 2018), Member since 2013
  • LES USA Canada, Licensing Executives Society Standards Initiative, IP Management for Startups Committee (2017 – )
  • IPIC Advocacy Group, representing Canadian IP professional before MPs, including Cabinet Ministers to raise awareness of key IP issues (2015 – )
  • McGill/IPIC, Director of Patent Course, Montreal (2016 – 2018)
  • LES USA Canada Board Nomination Committee (2018 – 2019)
  • Secretary, LES USA Canada Foundation Board (2016 – 2018)
  • LESI, Chair of YMC Committee (2017 – 2018)
  • Chair of 2nd Pan-American LESI YMC Event, Ottawa, June 10, 2016
  • Chair of Speaker Bank Committee, IPIC Women in IP Networking Group (2016 – 2018)
  • Board Reviewer – Lead To Win (Business Development Program for Entrepreneurs)  – Ottawa (2011 – )
  • Organizing Committee, 2017 LES IP100 meeting, for IP Owners by IP Owners
  • Board Member and Engagement Committee Chair, Western University Alumni Association Board, London, Ontario (2013 – 2017 )
  • Chair of the Campaign Cabinet of the Caring and Sharing Exchange, Ottawa (2013 – 2016)
  • Director – Signority Inc., Ottawa (2012 – 2014)
  • Lead To Win Faculty Member and Lecturer (Winter 2012, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2015)
  • Mock Interviewer for the Legal Links & Bridges Mentoring Program, The University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law (Common Law Section) (2011, 2013)
  • Board Member and Secretary, Vanier Community Service Centre (2010 – 2012)
  • Board Member, Vanier Community Association (2010 – 2013)
  • Programming Committee Member and Fundraising Committee Member, Dress for Success Ottawa National Capital Region (2010 – 2011)


  • American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA)
  • Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC)
  • International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI)
  • International Trademark Association (INTA)
  • Licensing Executive Society (LES USA & CANADA)
  • Licensing Executive Society International (LESI)
  • Royal Ottawa Golf Club


  • LESI Annual Meeting, Speaker: “Open Innovation Models in Canada”, Yokohama, Japan, May 27th, 2019
  • McGill-IPIC Patent Course, Lecture: “Business Methods and Software Patents”, Montreal, annually since 2014, and on July 17, 2018; Workshop Leader for “International Patent Filing Strategies” annually since 2016, and on July 19, 2018
  • Korea Electronics Association (KEA) Speaker: “Patenting Software and Business Methods in Canada and a US Comparative”, Seoul, Republic of Korea, April 17, 2018
  • Korean Patent Attorney Association (KPAA) Speaker: “Industrial Design Protection in Canada”, Seoul, Republic of Korea, April 16, 2018
  • AIPPI Japan Speaker: “Patenting Software and Business Methods in Canada and a US Comparative”, Tokyo, Japan, April 13, 2018
  • LES USA Canada Speaker: “Licensing and IP Considerations When Working With Start-Ups in Emerging Fields”, Webinar, February 26, 2018
  • LES Austria/Hungary/Czech Republic Meeting: “Do’s and Don’t When Licensing IP in North America”, Vienna, January 19, 2018
  • Moderator: “Cyber Security: Intersection of Issues around data security, trade secrets, regulatory frameworks, and consumer privacy”, Los Angeles, June 16, 2017
  • Panelist Expert for Canada: “Trade Secrets and Data Privacy Panel”, IP Law Association of Chicago (IPLAC) Unfair Competition and Trade Secrets Panel, Chicago, June 23, 2016
  • IPIC Speaker: “Best Practices for Responding to Section 2 Objections during Patent Protection”, IPIC Continuing Legal Education Webinar, June 17, 2016
  • Speaker: “Design Protection in Canada”, Ottawa, June 10, 2016
  • Speaker at the CIGI ILRP Roundtable: Positioning Canada to be Leader in the Global IP System,  Ottawa, January 19, 2016
  • IP Law Lecturer – Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, November 9, 2015 (annual since 2011)
  • LES USA & Canada Mid-Year Meeting, Co-Speaker with Allison Mages, GE: “Speed for Green: Expediting Green Patent Applications”, New York City, March 26, 2014.
  • Lead To Win (Business Development Program for Entrepreneurs) Lecture:  “Business Aspects of Intellectual Property”, Ottawa, February 19, 2014 (annual since 2012)
  • NRC-IRAP Lecture for Industrial Technology Advisors (ITAs): “Early-Stage Start-Ups: Intellectual Property (IP) Pitfalls to be Aware Of” – May 22, 2012
  • IPIC Speaker: “The Amazon Decision: The Federal Court of Appeal Clarifies the Criteria for Patentability of Business Methods”, IPIC Continuing Legal Education Webinar, Ottawa, December 16, 2011
  • LSUC CPD Seminar Presenter: “Review of Critical Case Law in Patents and Trademarks” – September 2011
  • IPIC Speaker: “A Yen For Euros and Pesos: Doing Business Abroad”, IPIC Young Practitioners Committee Webinar, Ottawa, Ontario – June 11, 2010
  • Presenter: “The Ins and Outs of Patenting Software-Related and Business Method Inventions”, Fresh Founders, Ottawa – May 6, 2010


  • Raffoul, N. and A. Mages 2014, Speed For Green – Expediting Green Patent Applications.  LES Insights, April 28, 2014
  • Raffoul, N. and A. Brion. 2011. Reasons for Patent Protection and Cost-Effective Patent Filing Options for SMEs. Technology Innovation Management Review.  December 2011: 29-33
  • Natalie Raffoul, “The Patentability of Electromagnetic and Acoustic Signals in Canada” (2009) 7 C.J.L.T. 1-192