Canadian Lawyer InHouse

December/January 2021

Legal news and trends for Canadian in-house counsel and c-suite executives

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www.canadianlawyermag.com/inhouse 17 HOW WE DID IT Last year, Canadian Lawyer asked lawyers, in-house counsel and clients from across Canada to vote on the top full-service regional firms in the Prairies. They were asked to rank the top five firms in both Manitoba and Saskatch- ewan from a long list and were given the option of adding a firm not included on that list. The survey respondents' rankings were based on the regional service coverage, client base, notable mandates, service excellence and legal expertise of the firms. To be included, firms had to have at least one office in the Prairies and offer a wide range of legal services. Voters ranked their top five and a points system was used to determine the winners, which are listed here alphabetically. of analysis and coming up with strategy, and I always find they are very accommodating with brainstorming and addressing my concerns." The pandemic crisis further exacerbated the already struggling oil and gas industry, giving rise to an increase in layoffs and terminations at Ensign, so Louie is navigating severance obligations and issues surrounding constructive dismissal with guidance from Miller Thomson. Federal Crown corporation Farm Credit Canada is another client of Miller Thomson, having worked with the firm for at least 15 years. In addition to recovery work, the firm helps FCC with general corporate advice and drafting legal documents for large transactions. "I enjoy working with Miller Thomson because they provide good, practical legal advice for us, especially on our transactional work," says Michael Beaulne, legal counsel at FCC. "The lawyers are really good communica- tors and they just really understand how FCC operates." The firm also has a quoting system for legal fees that Beaulne finds to be helpful. Miller Thomson recently helped FCC to review its mortgage terms in every province across Canada, which was a very successful project, according to FCC's vice president, law and corporate secretary, Megan Dolo. The longstanding partnership also recently led to a lawyer from Miller Thomson working on secondment at FCC. "That was great because he took his knowledge and his connections with the company back with him, so now he has that insider's perspective to the advice he gives us," says Dolo. "It's always helpful to work with professionals who know your industry."

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