Legal Advisor

Permanent contract|London|Legal / Tax / Insurance

Legal Advisor

London, United Kingdom Permanent contract Legal / Tax / Insurance


Description of the Business Line or Department

The Legal Department in London (SEGL/JUR London) is a team of c.60 lawyers and legal advisers (permanent and temporary staff) providing legal advice and support to all London based investment banking business lines and those businesses and legal entities forming part of the SG Group in the UK.  It is divided into the following teams/areas of expertise: (i) Global Finance (sub- divided into Acquisition and Asset Finance (AAF), Financial Engineering and Group Financing (EGF), Natural Resources and Hedging (NRH)); (ii) Markets (sub-divided into Structured Over-The-Counter Derivatives (OTC), Programmes and Structured Issuances (PSI) and Debt Capital Markets (DCM)); (iii) Trading and Prime Agreement (TPA) (sub-divided into Master Agreements (MAN) and Prime Services (PRM)); (iv) Securities Services; (v) Corporate Finance; (vi) Financial Services Regulation; (vii) Employment; (viii) Shared Internal Legal Services (incorporating Commercial and IT Contracts and Global Transaction Payment Services); and (ix) Data Protection.

The Legal Department is responsible for identifying and analysing legal and commercial issues, including communicating advice clearly and effectively, as part of an overall responsibility for managing and overseeing legal risk for the businesses supported.  The Legal Department is also responsible for managing its own conduct risk, promoting a positive culture of good conduct and compliance and contributing to the management of conduct risk throughout the businesses supported.

The Trading and Prime Agreements (TPA) legal teams are divided into 3 groups: 1) MAN (Master Agreement Negotiation) in charge of the legal onboarding process of trading agreements in accordance with SG policies, procedures and guidelines; 2) TRS (Transversal team) in charge of COO & Systems, Netting programme, Norms and Regulatory implementation; and 3) PRM in charge of the legal aspects of the prime brokerage activities.

TPA’s purpose is to: 1) assist the business to grow its franchise with appropriate legal coverage and 2) protect the SG Group by negotiating appropriate standard agreements in accordance with prevailing SG policies and continuously improving norms as required and 3) ensure regulatory compliance in the master trading agreement context.


The PRM team is responsible for assisting the business needs of Prime Services booked within SG clearing hubs (Societe Generale International Limited (SGIL), Societe Generale SA (SGPM) and others) whilst also protecting the legal interests of SGPM and its affiliates by: 1) observing the SG Group’s standards and procedures; and 2) implementing relevant policies and working closely with other relevant stakeholders (Compliance, Credit (RISQ), Finance, Operations etc.) to ensure the operating model for execution services, clearing and prime brokerage services are consistent with the legal and regulatory framework applicable to the relevant SG entities. The team is based in London and Paris.

PRM in EMEA provide the following legal services: 1) advising and providing assistance to SG internal stakeholders (Business (BL), Risk, RISQ, Operations and others) re products and processes; 2) negotiating customer agreements with clients according to SG policies and procedures ratified by the Normative Committee; 3) escalating issues outside the PRM negotiation guidelines to the relevant functions for approval, and ultimately, if required, to the Arbitration Committee; 4) commissioning and assisting with the review of netting and collateral opinions, where required for Prime Services, in accordance with SG Group policy; 5) reviewing credit risk mitigation documentation e.g. guarantees, letters of credit, in accordance with standards and Risk/Credit’s requirements; 6) supporting SGPM and SGIL on legal projects e.g. regulatory/new activity/remediation/ new booking strategy; 7) reviewing new Exchange or Central Counterparty rules for Agency business (clearing for customers); 8) managing with relevant internal stakeholders disputes/regulatory audits/enquiries 9) assisting JUR CTX or others departments/Business Units of SGPM or SGIL in relation to such litigation etc.; and 10) managing cross border issues and conducting legal watch relating to Prime Services.

Summary of the key purposes of the role

  • Ensuring the legal security, certainty and conformity of the activities exercised by Prime Services with a particular focus on client trading agreements.
  • Proactively identifying and participating in the management of legal operational risks and opportunities by acting as a trusted legal adviser to the Prime Services business (in particular in relation to clearing, cross products netting, cash and synthetic prime brokerage matters, dispute resolutions, interactions with exchanges and central counterparties).
  • Supporting the development of new business opportunities, products and services in the field of Prime Services and Clearing with a view to ensuring that client agreements adequately comply with applicable regulation and that SG corporate and business interests are protected.

Summary of responsibilities

Providing legal advice on English law governed agreements and assisting SG internal stakeholders (BL, RISQ, Operations and others) during the customers’ legal on-boarding process mainly for the prime brokerage, clearing and cash equities businesses

•           Issuing and negotiating customer agreements (i.e. FIA Terms of Business 2018, Electronic Order Routing Systems agreement, Prime Brokerage Agreements, Cross Product Master Agreements, Global Master Securities Lending Agreements, Global Master Confirmation Agreements, Global Master Repurchase Agreements and others) and the drafting of bespoke clauses for these agreements

•           Liaising with customers and external legal and compliance departments regarding their customer agreements

•           Liaising with account executives and specific departments in respect of customer agreements, ancillary documents (guarantees, others)

•           Coordinating between Compliance, Financial Crime Unit, Operations, Risk and Business for sign off in accordance with the account opening procedure and relevant negotiation guidelines

•           Reviewing various types of legal documentation and other various legal matters for PRM Legal

•           Supporting SGPM and SGIL on legal projects e.g. business onboarding push, new activity, regulatory implementation, remediation plans

  • Reviewing netting and collateral opinions

Profile required


All members of the Legal Department are expected to demonstrate the basic principles of the SG Leadership Model:

  • Team Spirit: working with colleagues inside and outside of the Legal Department to achieve success
  • Innovation: demonstrating common sense, looking for simple, efficient solutions
  • Responsibility: having the courage to do the right thing and being aware of relevant risk (whether legal, conduct or other risk)
  • Commitment: being engaged, showing consideration for others and contributing to a positive attitude in the Legal Department, and more widely within SG

In addition, Vice Presidents are expected to demonstrate the following skills:

  • Identifies, analyses and solves/addresses difficult legal issues and risks within area of coverage, demonstrating appropriate level of attention to detail
  • Works with limited amount of supervision but will seek guidance if necessary, evaluating and escalating issues to hierarchy as appropriate
  • Able to manage multiple tasks and files, managing time and resources efficiently to meet deadlines
  • Able, if requested, to perform role of coordinator on projects or work streams
  • Takes responsibility for handling business partners’ legal issues and answering their concerns efficiently; provides clear and concrete solutions, alternatives and fall back positions where appropriate
  • Demonstrates good knowledge of banking industry
  • Contributes to promoting team spirit within area of coverage and takes initiative to this end, including sharing  knowledge with members of legal department
  • Is recognised as consistent and reliable and shows strong sense of personal accountability in discharging duties
  • Demonstrates a strong sense of engagement to role and takes initiative to resolve issues
  • Demonstrates openness to innovation and ability to support and apply new ways of proceeding; is also able to suggest, where appropriate, improvements for systems and processes

Other generic competencies

  • Strong communication skills
  • Flexibility and adaptability; must be able to respond to the changing regulatory environment
  • Ability to make decisions
  • Analytical skills
  • Teamwork; must be able to work effectively with a number of different departments and business heads
  • Ability to establish credibility quickly with internal clients
  • Must demonstrate an innovative approach to legal issues in support of business initiatives and objectives
  • Capacity to act in a proactive manner in a demanding business
  • Fluency in French (desirable but not required)

Why join us

People join for the impact they can have on us. They stay for the impact we have on them. A flatter structure offers visibility and exposure beyond that of our competitors, so you know our names, and we know yours. It's personable, human, and inspires success through passion. By encouraging open mindedness and a willingness to share ideas, we have adapted to market changes and thrived through innovation. Bringing words like “hard work” and “dedication” together with “community” and “respect” has enabled us to work collaboratively and build our future together. We call this Team Spirit and it's what makes us different. It's what makes you different.

Business insight

If you feel you have the required experience and qualifications, then please apply to the SG Resourcing Team, and we will manage your application. At Société Générale, we believe our people are our strength and are core to the success of our business. As such, we search for, recruit and appoint the best available person on the basis of aptitude and ability, regardless of sex, marital or civil partnership status, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins, pregnancy, disability, age, sexual orientation, religion, belief or gender reassignment.

We are an equal opportunities employer and we are proud to make diversity a strength for our company. Societe Generale is committed to recognizing and promoting all talents, regardless of their beliefs, age, disability, parental status, ethnic origin, nationality, gender identity, sexual orientation, membership of a political, religious, trade union or minority organisation, or any other characteristic that could be subject to discrimination.

Reference: 21000TE2
Entity: SG CIB
Starting date: 2021/11/29
Publication date: 2021/10/19