Canadian Lawyer InHouse

February/March 2021

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

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www.canadianlawyermag.com/inhouse 1 canadianlawyermag.com/inhouse EDITOR'S DESK For both institutions that were in overdrive and survival mode, which law firms had these positive attributes quickly became evident. 2020 was the ultimate law firm relationship test T wenty-twenty was a career-defining year for most in-house counsel as the pandemic disrupted everything. As our annual corporate counsel survey shows (p. 16), almost all respondents agreed that they are stretched too thinly at work. Genevieve Richard, director of legal affairs at VIA Rail Canada, calls this the "victim of our success" syndrome. "It's the reality of any good in-house department because the better you are at what you do and the closer you are to your business units, the more work will trickle down your way," says Richard. While most in-house lawyers were able to demonstrate their value in such tumul- tuous times, they were not in it alone. External spend in 2020 increased from the previous year for 63 per cent of respondents. In a crisis, the value of law firm relationships became even more apparent. For some industries, such as life sciences, this was because demand went into overdrive. "One of the challenges but also an opportunity that I see for our clients in the industry is the expansion of domestic production capacity for pharmaceuticals, medical devices and personal protective equipment," says Vanessa Grant at Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP (p. 29). "I think the real challenge will continue to be to supply sufficient products." Other industries, such as restaurants, faced existential challenges. "The Keg has been around for 50 years and we have enjoyed a lot of prosperity, so fiscal responsibility has not always been the first lens through which we evaluate ideas, but now, it is definitely one of our priorities," says Catherine Chow, vice presi- dent, legal and general counsel at Keg Restaurants Ltd. (p. 30). Despite the fiscal challenges, though, Chow says she regularly retains external counsel for securities, employment, trademark and liquor-licensing matters. In-house counsel told us that a practical approach and a good understanding of the business were the most important attributes they look for in a law firm. For all legal departments, the law firms with these positive attributes in 2020 cemented their client relationship for years to come. Tim Wilbur, Editor-in-Chief Canadian Lawyer InHouse is published 6 times a year by Key Media Canada (Law) Ltd. KEY MEDIA and the KEY MEDIA logo are trademarks of Key Media IP Limited, and used under licence by Key Media Canada (Law) Ltd. CANADIAN LAWYER INHOUSE is a trademark of Key Media Canada (Law) Ltd. All rights reserved. Contents may not be reprinted without written permission. The opinions expressed in articles are not necessarily those of the publisher. Information presented is compiled from sources believed to be accurate, however, the publisher assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions. Canadian Lawyer InHouse disclaims any warranty as to the accuracy, completeness or currency of the contents of this publication and disclaims all liability in respect of the results of any action taken or not taken in reliance upon information in this publication. Publications Mail Agreement #41261516 ISSN 0703-2129 ©2021 GST/HST Registration #799898465 RC-0001 RETURN UNDELIVERABLE CANADIAN ADDRESS TO: CIRCULATION DEPARTMENT 20 Duncan St., 3rd Floor, Toronto, ON, M5H 3G8 EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief Tim Wilbur Production Editor Patricia Cancilla Writer Lucy Saddleton CONTRIBUTORS Cheryl Foy, Rebecca Jaremko Bromwich, Bobby Leung, Wael Louis Nackasha ART & PRODUCTION Art Director Marla Morelos Lead, Media Production Co-ordinator Amie Suttie Global Production Manager Alicia Chin (on leave) Production Co-ordinator Ella Dayandante SALES & BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT VP, Media & Client Strategy Dane Taylor Senior Business Development Manager Steffanie Munroe Business Development Manager Lynda Fenton National Account Executive Abhiram Prabhu CORPORATE President Tim Duce Events and Conference Manager Chris Davis Chief Information Officer Colin Chan Human Resources Manager Julia Bookallil Global CEO Mike Shipley Global COO George Walmsley Key Media Canada (Law) Ltd 20 Duncan St., 3rd Floor Toronto, Ontario M5H 3G8 tel: +1 416 644 8740 www.keymedia.com EDITORIAL INQUIRIES tim.wilbur@keymedia.com NAUK SUBSCRIPTIONS CO-ORDINATOR Donnabel Reyes tel: 647 374 4536 ext. 243 donnabel.reyes@keymedia.com ADVERTISING INQUIRIES legaladvertise@keymedia.com canadianlawyermag.com/inhouse ISSUE 16.01 | FEBRUARY/MARCH 2021

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