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Head of Legal PM Japan

Your role:

The Head of Legal, Japan, ensures that the Japanese affiliates of the Merck Group operate in compliance with local laws, regulations and internal guidelines. You will fulfill the duties of a local legal counsel and leader of a small legal team providing proactive and strategic legal advice to the local managing director, the CFO, the business as well as other group functions. As legal business partner Performance Materials, you will report to the regional legal head of the Performance Materials Business but also assist the legal Live Science organization. You will be part of our global legal and compliance team and network.


Who you are:

  • Qualified to practice law in Japan as a lawyer (Bengoshi: 弁護士); additional foreign qualification, education and postgraduate degree is a plus
  • Minimum of 8 years of law firm and/or in-house experience with commercial and business affairs including international commercial transactions as focus areas. Combination of law firm and in-house experience with at least 3 years law firm experience is preferred.
  • Experience to manage a small team is preferred.
  • Experience providing legal advice to the chemicals and/or life science industries is preferred; working experience abroad is a plus.
  • Experience in relevant business laws, including commercial, fair trade and competition, intellectual property, labor law as well as corporate governance and dispute resolution.
  • Strong presentation, communication and collaboration skills, including feeling comfortable to directly advise senior management and ability to translate complex legal backgrounds into summaries which are easily understandable by non-lawyers.
  • Ability to take clients' concerns into account in how best to pursue legal strategies. Ability to provide effective and simple solutions for complex legal projects and situations.
  • Team player who is comfortable to work in international and cross-functional teams and to assume responsibility. Proactive working style and willingness to contribute by directly handling all types of legal projects, including group legal entity restructuring.
  • Ability to balance numerous matters while prioritizing same on a day-to day basis as events require.


What will you do:

  • Assist management team, business partners and group functions in all legal matters, including contract negotiation, litigation/dispute resolution, crisis management, corporate matters and compliance.
  • Participate in business/leadership meetings; identify legal risks and proactively provide strategic advice as legal business partner to find pragmatic legal solutions.
  • Represent the legal department in negotiations with external contract parties as well as authorities.
  • Act as corporate secretary; ensure that the governance structure and systems are appropriate and corporate documentation (board/shareholder resolutions, amendments, signing authorities) is well maintained and recorded.
  • Take responsibility for litigation/government investigation management, claims reporting and cost-efficient management of external counsel  
  • Manage a team consisting of 2 colleagues, including day-to-day management, objectives setting, coaching/employee development and performance appraisal.
  • Take responsibility for planning of team resources and budget as well as team performance.
  • Respect and ensure compliance with legal, regulatory and company guidelines.
  • Ensure sufficient training of legal framework and policies in cooperation with Compliance.
  • Coordinate with regional counsel and headquarters to promote best practice and ensure consistent standards and high quality legal advice within the global legal network.
  • Manage and maintain legal documents and databases.
Job Requisition ID:  184390
Location:  Tokyo
Career Level:  D - Professional (4-9 years)
Working time model:  full-time

US Disclosure
The Company is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer. No employee or applicant for employment will be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military or veteran status, genetic information, gender identity, transgender status, marital status, or any other classification protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.  This policy of Equal Employment Opportunity applies to all policies and programs relating to recruitment and hiring, promotion, compensation, benefits, discipline, termination, and all other terms and conditions of employment. Any applicant or employee who believes they have been discriminated against by the Company or anyone acting on behalf of the Company must report any concerns to their Human Resources Business Partner, Legal, or Compliance immediately. The Company will not retaliate against any individual because they made a good faith report of discrimination.

North America Disclosure
The Company is committed to accessibility in its workplaces, including during the job application process. Applicants who may require accommodation during the application process should speak with our HR Services team at 855 444 5678 from 8:00am to 5:30pm ET Monday through Friday.