Legal Head

Legal & Risk Management Mumbai, India


Legal Head


About WRI?

World Resources Institute (WRI), is an independent charity legally registered as the India Resources Trust, provides objective information and practical proposals to foster environmentally sound and socially equitable development. Through research, analysis, and recommendations, WRI India puts ideas into action to build transformative solutions to protect the earth, promote livelihoods, and enhance human well-being.

We are inspired by and associated with World Resources Institute (WRI), a global research organisation with more than 1000 experts and other staff around the world. World Resources Institute began in Washington, DC, in 1982 to provide cutting edge analysis to address global environment and development challenges. WRI spans more than 60 countries, with offices in BrazilChina, Europe, India, Indonesia, and the United States. In all of these locations, WRI works with government, business, and civil society to drive ambitious action based on high-quality data and objective analysis.

WRI has the capacity to convene key stakeholders, and forge strategic partnerships with governments, business, foundations, civil society organizations, institutes and NGOs, to scale-up solutions that can bring game-changing results for the sustainable management of natural resources in India.

Position Overview 

In this newly created role reporting directly to the Director Operations, you will play a strategic role in providing guidance and counsel at the senior levels of WRI in the areas of legal and reputation risk. Providing legal support to our India operations and business development activities will be your primary responsibility. As Legal – Head, you will be integral part of the team, which participates in the development and implementation of WRI’s strategy and operations. You should have excellent knowledge about FCRA compliances, company law and Trust Laws.

Responsibilities

Legal Advisory Support

  • Ensure day-to-day legal needs of all departments are adequately met through management and coordination of outside counsel
  • Advise on legal issues and potential exposures through individual or group meetings, seminars or written opinions. Assist in compliance law, FCRA, trust law and labor issues as needed
  • Drafting, reviewing, vetting, negotiate documents (including but not limited to grant agreements with foreign and local donors, non-profit partners, vendor contracts, leases, policy statements, disclosures, solicitations, reports, publications and releases for internal and external dissemination, grants MOUs etc.)
  • Advise on critical brand protection areas relating to IP and information management, including data privacy and cyber security

Specific areas include nonprofit status and obligations, governance, and internal investigations

  • Manage fraud reporting and whistleblower policies and procedures. Establish and continuously improve a consistent compliance framework for the identification, management, monitoring and reporting of Compliance risks and issues.
  • Understanding of Regulatory laws, regulatory strategies, Trust (NGO) laws (FCRA), Company law (FIMA, FDI etc), shops & establishment (Compliance – bonus, wage, attendance, fire drill, IT, display requirements etc). Knowledge and experience of best practice compliance and governance frameworks, methodologies and emerging practice, compliance monitoring.
  • Drafting and vetting of MOA, MOU, Bank guarantee, Indemnity Bonds if any, Undertakings and authority letters, vendor contracts, donor contracts, framing disclaimers in our contracts, etc. Vetting, consultation and co-ordination with the panel of lawyers to ensure documents are legally sound.
  • Liaison with relevant legal department of Partners/Government offices and other authorities. 
  • Maintain regulatory or compliance documentation, determine operational compliance with regulations or standards. Communicate with government agencies. 

Compliance Management

  • Manage the compliance for the institute and support in risk management
  • Identify and facilitate the process to reduce areas of risk exposure
  • Survey regulatory and legal operating environments to determine risks and recommend actions or options available to mitigate such risks
  • Report violations of compliance or regulatory standards to duly authorized enforcement agencies as appropriate or required.
  • Liaison with consultants, lawyers for legal opinions
  • Monitor the compliance at 3 levels, Program, Offices and Organization level
  • Conduct or direct the internal investigation of compliance issues. Identify compliance issues that require follow-up or investigation.

Risk Management

  • Meet with senior managers and other staff to obtain information about current and future projects and activities contemplated
  • Review key project summaries, publications and other materials produced by India office to identify potential legal exposure
  • Work with counsel for other non-profit agencies on legal issues of common interest to the non-profit and NGO communities
  • Oversee relationships with outside legal counsel providing legal services in India; participate on committees, task forces, and in seminars to educate internal stakeholders on managing legal risk and exposure
  • Be available to all staff to listen and advise on work related to legal and ethical issues. Advising on all correspondence requiring legal inputs and educating front-facing teams on relevant regulatory aspects for better expectation-setting with stakeholders upfront
  • Legal due diligences of the partner organizations and highlighting the risk if any from the funding perspective. 

Management Strategy and Operations

  • Meeting India Executive Team as needed to participate with senior managers in the development and implementation of WRI strategy and operations
  • Assume responsibility for management of operational and strategic implementation as determined by the India Executive Team
  • Identifying potential legal and related risks and developing mitigating strategies.

Board of Directors Support

  • Provide guidance and counsel and serve as to the Board of Directors ensuring that appropriate governance processes are executed
  • Review and approve minutes of the proceedings of the Board and ensure that meetings of the By-Law Committees are appropriately documented
  • Provide advice and guidance to the Board in its execution of its duties
  • Work with the Executive Assistant CEO to ensure Board fiduciary materials are compliant with local regulations and oversight bodies
  • Providing updates and reports to the internal committees, partners and the Board on a regular basis on relevant legal issues Conduct of Board and Annual General Meetings and the related compliances

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelors' degree in Law (LLB), with additional qualifications of Company Secretary or Chartered Accountant
  • Minimum 10-12 years of experience as a corporate lawyer or an in-house legal counsel.
  • Experience working with non-profit organizations is strongly preferred. Sound knowledge and understanding of all laws applicable to a non-profit organization. FCRA, company law, Trust Laws are mandatory.
  • Excellent legal drafting and interpretation skills with high detail orientation
  • Highly competent in statutory, regulatory compliance issues.
  • High standards of integrity, ethics, and professionalism
  • Understanding of and commitment to the underlying environmental, sustainability and substantive strategic areas of strategic significance to WRI
  • Excellent verbal and written communications and negotiations skills; excellent analytical abilities and legal research skill; proficiency in word processing and internet research; ability to work in a diverse environment
  • Experience in managing a legal department, experience in training and making presentations all a plus

Preferred Qualifications:

  • 2-4 years of experience as in-house counsel in an international non-profit organization that receives support from multiple donor types and streams.

Salary and Benefits: 

Salary shall be commensurate with experience and skills. WRI offers a generous and comprehensive benefits package.

Duration: Full-time regular

Location: Mumbai, India

To Apply:

Only Qualified applicants should apply online at https://jobs.jobvite.com/wri/jobs. All applications must be submitted online through this career portal in order to be formally considered. Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted for interview purpose.

We believe in equal employment, it is our policy to recruit, and provide opportunities for advancement in all job classifications without regard to caste, color, religion, sex, age, marital status, sexual preference, parental status, or disability.