Legal Counsel

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As a member of our Americas legal team, you will primarily support labour and employment law matters in Canada ( largely Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario) and provide support, as needed, on U.S. employment law matters.
 
You will interact with DS local and executive management on labor and employment matters. 
 
You will partner with HR, Finance, IT, and other internal teams across organizational lines to formulate strategies and plans, and define the legal risks associated with such plans.
 
You will advise on legal issues arising in the course of the DS Group’s business, including issues related to contract interpretation, corporate policy and regulatory compliance.
 
You will review legal data and advise the DS Group companies in the Americas on appropriate legal action to be taken.
 
What will your job be? 
  • Provide overall legal support to the DS Group companies in Canada (primarily Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario) with respect to the following:
  • Counseling on DS Group HR policies such as leaves, vacation requirements, wage and hour requirements and personnel records
  • Interpret the Employee Handbook and participate in the team doing annual Handbook updates
  • Advise on non-competition provisions in employee agreements, including enforcing such agreements in Canadian provinces
  • Canadian employment equity action plans and audits of those plans, if any
  • Termination of employment, including preparation of release agreements and advising on reductions in force, if any
  • Advise on age, disability, gender, race and other discrimination claims and handle tribunal claims as needed
  • Advise on internal investigations involving claims of harassment or other misconduct
  • Assist outside counsel in employment-related litigation, including preparation of witnesses, document gathering, review of filings and briefs, and litigation strategy
  • Advise on hiring, background checks, and offer letters
  • Advise on independent contractor questions and interpret law and policies on them
  • Review and negotiate agreements with outside vendors for benefits and other human resource-related issues
  • Handle wage claim disputes
  • Advise on changes in law affecting human resources
  • Conduct training of employees on human resources issues
  • While the primary focus of this role will be on Canadian employment law, you may be asked to assist with other employment law-related projects in the Americas, under the direction and guidance of an experienced lawyer
 
Your key success factors 
  • A law degree (LL.B. or J.D.) from an accredited law school and eligibility to practice in Quebec
  • 2 to 5 years of legal experience in an employment law department of a law firm, in-house, or both
  • Spoken and written bilingualism (English and French) required
  • Effective analytical and advisory skills, including the ability to review, evaluate and counsel internal clients on complex and routine legal questions relating to labour and employment law matters
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with clients and senior management, outside legal counsel and opposing party’s counsel
  • Experience in drafting, reviewing and negotiating employment agreements, severance and release agreements, non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements
  • Ability to establish and maintain positive working relationships with other attorneys, staff and clients 
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects simultaneously while also managing critical deadlines
  • Flexible, able to quickly adjust to evolving internal customer requirements, including deadlines
  • Highly organized with critical attention to details
  • Strong functional use of Microsoft Office (Excel, Word & PowerPoint) and the willingness to learn new information systems with ease
  • Consistently demonstrate the highest level of integrity without compromise with regards to ethical standards
  • Positive, self-motivated individual with high level of enthusiasm and willingness to learn and incorporate coaching and instructions into daily tasks and assignments
Pluses, not required
  • Experience with U.S. employment law matters
  • Some experience with labour and employment law matters related to mergers and acquisitions, integration and corporate simplification 

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