Legal Counsel

July 4 2019
Industries Legal
Categories Legal, Paralegal, In-house - Industry - Contract administrator, Civil law, Litigation
Vancouver, BC


SGI CANADA is the trade name of the property and casualty insurance division of Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI). SGI operates as SGI CANADA in five different provinces across Canada; British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, and Ontario, and also as Coachman Insurance Company in Ontario. Products are sold through a network of independent insurance brokers.

This role will work out of the Edmonton, Alberta office.

SGI's Key Goals

SGI's areas of focus are:

  1. SGI CANADA growth – Accelerate sustainable, profitable growth that protects the company's competitiveness and financial viability
  2. Customer centricity – Develop a deeper understanding of how to increase value for customers; strengthen ability to deliver that value
  3. Traffic safety – Prevent deaths, injuries and property damage caused by traffic collisions
  4. Operational excellence – Enhance foundational business structures and processes, and develop employees to optimize delivery of the strategic plan

We also recognize that, to be truly customer centric, we must first be employee centric. So, we're also working to ensure employees are engaged and have the tools, training and desire to achieve corporate goals. If you're thinking this position has a lot to do with those tools, you're right!


The Position

Working out of the Edmonton office, the In-house Legal Counsel will be responsible for providing legal opinions and conducts litigation for cases of moderate complexity for SGI and/or its regional operations at each level of the court in the applicable jurisdiction. Assists with more complex litigation under the direction of the Associate General Counsel, Regional Senior Counsel and/or Senior Counsel. This position offers an excellent opportunity to work with a professional and dynamic team while maintaining a great work-life balance.

This position will be of interest to those with excellent interpersonal and communications skills looking for a challenging position in a fast-paced, dynamic environment. As Counsel, the incumbent will work on insurance related legal defence matters for the company and its insureds while acting as a trusted advisor providing legal advice on policy and technical issues to the organization.

Key Accountabilities

Note: This section is not intended to be an exhaustive list of duties and responsibilities – other duties and responsibilities may be assigned.

1. Litigation (50% with the exception of one position that is 30%)

  • Reviews claims files and provides adjusting staff or managers with critical legal analysis in relation to issues of liability and quantification of damages together with any evidentiary impediments to success of litigation.
  • Coordinates litigation strategies and timelines on litigation files.
  • Assesses and adjusts internal reserves as necessary until the conclusion of litigation and/or settlement.
  • Meets with and advises clients, witnesses and expert witnesses (both internal and external) in relation to procedural and substantive aspects of their testimony at discovery, at the Appeal Commission or at trial.
  • Directs and conducts further investigations in order to obtain further evidence in support of the litigation.
  • Prepares pleadings (claims and defenses as necessary).
  • Obtains, organizes and vets documents for legal production.
  • Attends court for any necessary interim application required to facilitate orderly resolution of the litigation.
  • Attends discovery, the Appeal Commission and court in advancing and defending the corporation's legal position.
  • Attends mediation, informal settlement negotiations and judicial settlement conferences and advises clients in relation to settlement issues.
  • Assists the legal team in coordinating and organizing legal precedents and provides a supervisory role with the paralegals in matters relating to recovery actions or Small Claims.
  • Provides seminars to internal clients on key aspects of the law which impact on their business practices.
  • Concludes litigation files with settlement authority of up to $50,000.

2. Research/Opinions (10% with the exception of one position that is 50%)

  • Conducts in-depth legal research and prepares legal briefs at the direction of the Associate General Counsel, Regional Senior Counsel or Senior Counsel on all issues affecting the corporation, but primarily in the areas of legislative or contractual interpretation, liability, quantification of damages and court processes.
  • Conducts general research at the direction of the General Counsel, Regional Senior Counsel or Senior Counsel on evidentiary burdens and the need for experts in a variety of areas, but primarily on medical issues and engineering matters.
  • Provides ad hoc, oral and written legal advice to internal customers (primarily in Claims) on an as needed basis under the direction and supervision of the Associate General Counsel or Regional Senior Counsel.

3. Corporate Matters (10%)

  • Prepares simple contracts at the direction and with the assistance of the Associate General Counsel and General Counsel.
  • Analyses and reviews of company agreements or proposed agreements focusing on the implications of minor legal issues.

4. Training/Education (10%)

  • Maintains a working knowledge of insurance practices, and in particular, the legal aspects which impact on the corporation's lines of business.
  • Maintains familiarity with existing insurance law, and other areas of the law which affect the company's business pursuits.

5. Leadership (10%)

  • Actively contributes to and supports a culture of a high performing workforce.
  • Participates in divisional succession plans, ensuring ongoing professional and career development and supports development in others.
  • Supports a culture of leadership and accountability to effectively deliver on strategic and corporate strategies.
  • Is actively committed to leadership development across the company, supporting team and workforce readiness through mentoring, training and developmental opportunities.

6. Corporate Management (10%)

  • Enables the success of programs and policies that are in alignment with corporate, strategic and divisional strategies. 
  • Manages risk in area of authority.


Education, Experience and Knowledge

The ideal candidate will have a minimum of 2 years' experience in the general practice of law with a focus on litigation. Must have a law degree and be a member in good standing of the Alberta Bar or a similar designation in another Canadian province. The incumbent of this position will also have the following skillset and experience:

  • Knowledge of substantive and procedural laws.
  • Knowledge of the Insurance Act and related legislation and regulations in the applicable jurisdiction.
  • Knowledge of all acts in the applicable jurisdiction that directly or indirectly impact on the corporation's core business.
  • Knowledge of insurance claims litigation.
  • Knowledge of insurance practices and, in particular, the legal aspect which impact on the corporation's lines of business.
  • Knowledge of the practices and procedures of all levels of courts in the applicable jurisdiction.
  • Ability to critically analyze moderately complex multi-dimensional litigation across a broad range of legal issues.
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively with other counsel and team members
  • Ability to coordinate, prepare and advocate moderately complex matters or legal principles.
  • Ability to distill moderately complex concepts and present them in layman parlance.

This role will appeal to an individual who is savvy, proactive, confident, and collaborative and can work independently through cases and legal disputes. If you feel you have the de­monstrated background and are interested in learning more about this career opportunity, please forward you resume to **.*******@***.** or call 778.374.2133.      

We thank all interested applicants, however; only those selected to move forward will be contacted.

Apply now! network