Director, Legal Affairs

We’re not your typical government agency
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) exists for a single reason: to make housing affordable for everyone in Canada. We’re mobilizing the expertise and energy of governments, non-profits, lenders, developers, social entrepreneurs and co-ops to create the future of housing. At CMHC, we believe that everyone in Canada should have a place to call home.
Experience a Results-Only Work Environment™ (ROWE™)
At CMHC, we trust you to get the job done. We’ve shifted from managing people to managing work. Each employee is 100% autonomous and 100% accountable. You can choose where you need to be and when you need to be there to meet your objectives. You’re in control of your time and are trusted to make the right decisions.

About the role


We’re constantly evolving to build an inclusive housing system through research, design, innovation and partnerships. This position provide substantive specialized legal expertise and advice on financing of real estate (multi-unit residential) under the National Housing Strategy and other matters of corporate significance and/or cross-functional files, to support the Vice-President, Legal Affairs in the provision of legal services. The incumbent will provide critical support in the management of the Division’s legal services to ensure that the standard of quality and client needs are met; and provide substantive support to the Vice-President, Legal Affairs in the execution of responsibilities to the President and senior management to help us make housing affordable for everyone in Canada.


What you will need


  • Undergraduate degree (except for Quebec a minimum of two degrees are required) in civil law and/or common law. Member in good standing of the Bar of a province or territory.
  • Minimum of 13 years of prior relevant experience with five years of supervisory experience.
  • Extensive specialized legal experience in a wide range of legal areas applicable to CMHC’s business. Knowledge of recent legal developments in order to provide legal advice and substantive guidance to in-house counsel and to effectively instruct and collaborate with external senior counsel.
  • Mastery of legal principles and concepts and a strong understanding of its interfacing with corporate business activities. In-depth understanding of the full range of CMHC business as well as its legal framework.
  • Excellent analytical skills for application to a complex range of issues that present frequently. Excellent problem-solving and decision-making skills and the capacity to be creative, innovative and responsive to corporate needs.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in order to brief at the most senior level of the Corporation.
  • Demonstrated ability to work and lead in a team environment. Demonstrated ability to interface with clients and Legal Division team members. Demonstrated ability to collaborate with the President and senior management in the achievement of corporate and administrative objectives.
  • Demonstrated experience in real estate financing (multi-unit residential and commercial properties); Project financing.


What you will be doing


Expert Advice and Guidance


  • Provide lead legal expertise and support on complex, strategic, sensitive and highly visible files, primarily to the President and senior management, in regards to corporate, Board of Directors and ministerial matters. Provide support and advice within Legal Division on various matters, and partner with the respective clients to provide legal counsel and advice in support of the achievement of their respective strategic goals and business objectives.
  • Contribute to overall effectiveness of the Corporation’s operations and the development of new CMHC programs, products and services, policies and systems by collaborating with and contributing to special project teams or working groups as the legal specialist.
  • Oversee and prepare, where required, the development of briefings to the President and senior management, the Board of Directors, and the Minister’s Office and develop correspondence on matters having important legal implications.
  • Provide strategic direction and instruction to external senior legal counsel on complex files or matters of corporate significance and collaborate with them in the development of legal opinions and advice.
  • Review strategic corporate documents such as Cabinet documents and Treasury Board, Management and Board of Director submissions, and provide a range of expert advice and guidance on matters of a complex or highly sensitive nature.


Issues Management


  • Manage and collaborate with senior external counsel on high profile or complex litigation and represent CMHC and the Vice-President, Legal Affairs as required, set strategy, advise the President and senior management, and collaborate on arguments and required documentation in support of litigation.
  • Lead the Legal Division on the quarterly reports made to the President and senior management on evolving developments in federal/provincial/territorial legislation and jurisprudence, analyze and assess legal, business and operational risks, work with clients to manage impacts.
  • Accountable for reviewing and providing recommendation for sign-off by Senior Vice-President/Vice-President, Legal Affairs/Corporate Secretary on submissions to the Board, Executive Committee, Management Committee and other committees related to areas of responsibility.


Operational Management


  • Plan and manage the effective use of resources including staff and operating budgets.
  • Ongoing examination of work processes and systems to ensure resources are used effectively and that systems are in place to facilitate the management and ongoing prioritization of legal service requests.
  • Oversee workload management; monitor the progress and status of legal requests; oversee the management of client relationships; ensure team members have the necessary tools and supports to work effectively.
  • Oversee the performance of team members of the practice groups through setting annual performance objectives; participate in annual performance evaluations of team leaders and team members, and develop training and development plans as required; provide ongoing coaching and mentoring and oversee the provision of administrative support within the Division.


People Leadership


  • Implement strategies to align people, work and systems to improve outcomes and maximize results.
  • Ensure that the pace, scope and cost of initiatives are planned, monitored and controlled.
  • Lead a large team, delegating responsibility and accountability while building capabilities within a division.
  • Inform decision-making with sound understanding of context, data and evidence; acknowledge impact and outcome of decisions.
  • Demonstrate and promote stewardship and governance of financial and human capital resources.
  • Develop objectives and take responsibility for engagement, enabling a culture of learning, performance management and accountability for a division.
  • Creates opportunities that encourage bilingualism and diversity and implements practices to advance an inclusive, healthy organization, respectful of the diversity of people and their skills and free from harassment and discrimination.


Does this sound like you?

Click the “apply" button and create an account (it should take about 30 seconds). We’re excited to hear from you! 

Similar searches: Full time, Permanent, Lawyer - In House Counsel