EY Canada to Bring More Legal Work In-House, Says Incoming Chief Legal Counsel


As Shara Roy prepares to formally consider over the prime lawful position at EY Canada, she states she’ll be expanding her team with a lot more junior lawyers, and leveraging technology and procedures to present far more and broader in-home lawful solutions to the business.

“We’re able to convey in the assets, the innovation, the pondering that the small business has completed and [use] that to support us offer them with improved authorized products and services,” she told Legislation.com Intercontinental.

Roy, who has been in teaching for the placement since January, requires about the main lawful counsel placement from Doris Stamml, who has been at EY for 34 a long time and its best lawyer due to the fact 2008.  

The most significant change Stamml mentioned she has seen in her career is a shift in the general counsel’s part from remaining really transactional to a reliable adviser. She, and now Roy, are members of the firm’s seven-human being govt committee, while other members of their lawful group are portion of leadership groups across the business enterprise.

“That was seriously trailblazing in Canada at the Significant Four for any individual in the standard counsel’s job to then be portion of the government committee of the firm,” explained Roy.

Roy stated the part has “changed considerably in excess of the very last ten years,” furnishing legal representation in places this kind of as contracts, litigation, employment, and compliance. The authorized group has expanded in excess of the several years and is now 15 people and developing.

The team Stamml designed is “people who are trustworthy by the company, who solve huge complicated issues for the business, and do so in a way that the small business values, and so taking that forward my main aim is to hold that believe in that has been constructed by the workforce,” stated Roy.

That have confidence in also interprets into a lot more authorized function, together with acquisitions and other big transactions, staying completed in-residence over the last few several years, Stamml mentioned.

“We truly feel that we could do it a lot more successfully and price-effectively than some of our exterior counsel,” she stated.

The main legal counsel task also features overseeing the affiliation in between EY and EY Regulation, which under regulation culture guidelines is a separate entity, as executive handling partner. In Canada, EY Legislation has 6 places of work across the country that present tax, business enterprise and immigration law providers.

Although EY is expanding its legal products and services in some jurisdictions close to the world, Roy mentioned the offerings of EY Law “complement the companies that Ernst & Young” already gives in the regions of accounting, tax, and consulting to make it a “one-prevent shop” for purchasers. They are not seeking to consider on the big nationwide legislation companies, she reported, but proceed to use “cutting-edge technological innovation to give terrific service” to their shoppers.

“Our legislation business is centered largely on tax products and services and mobility, immigration services as opposed to full expert services,” reported Stamml. “It’s not a sensible technique to develop into a entire-assistance regulation organization.”

Ahead of becoming a member of EY, Roy was a lover at highly regarded litigation boutique Lenczner Slaght. She explained “expanding her information and understanding all over leadership” has been a person of the most fascinating elements of her shift from the private apply to in-house.

At her earlier business, she stated you could know everyone and talk instantly with them. And even though that will however be attainable with her EY legal crew, it is not possible on a broader foundation.

“So how does a person lead a 7,000-member agency? And how does just one provide one’s level of view and have an effect on plan alter and all of these things?” she noted. “Leadership is an ongoing learning approach.”

Maybe an even bigger question is how one goes from getting a husband or wife in an 80-attorney company to the main legal counsel at one particular of the Big 4 qualified solutions companies. Mentoring and a robust connection between within and external counsel have been essential elements.

EY and Stamml had been purchasers of Roy’s firm for about a 10 years and throughout that time, Stamml started to mentor Roy. Possessing found out Roy “had management skills further than just becoming a good external litigator,” Stamml and the company felt confident when she was preparing to pass the torch that her mentee was up to the task.

“Because of the partnership that we had with Lenczers, our management team also understood Shara,” reported Stamml. “This is the importance of counsel getting a romantic relationship with the organization and exterior counsel.”

Roy said she loved litigation and was not on the lookout to go out of non-public observe, but right after 17 yrs was open to a new problem when it was introduced.

“I thought, this is a reduced danger that I ought to just take and have all of that fantastic learning encounter and see wherever the upcoming usually takes me,” she explained.

She officially normally takes about the main lawful counsel career on July 1.

Soon after that, Stamml reported she’ll proceed to perform on some particular projects with EY and appear for some exciting board chances. But she also programs to do “more of the items I delight in,” these as camping, examining and touring, she said.  


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