Corporate Social Responsibility

Our promise to local, national and global citizenship

Corporate Social Responsibility

Being a good corporate citizen is no longer an agenda to capture market share or attract new clients; it is a business imperative that drives firms and businesses to think better, do better and be better. At McCarthy Tétrault, this commitment to corporate social responsibility is in our DNA and has been for decades. Since 1997, when the McCarthy Tétrault Foundation began giving back to the communities in which we live and work, we have contributed more than $15 million to local programs and initiatives that improve the lives of everyday Canadians. Our pro bono work stretches back even further, with more than $32 million worth of lawyer hours spent on social justice issues throughout Canada and the world since 1992. This has put our lawyers on the ground in the communities they come from to build a healthier and more vibrant Canada.

We also recognise that our partners and clients have specific goals and ideals in mind with corporate social responsibility and we take our commitment to these ideals very seriously. Partnering with McCarthy Tétrault isn’t just about solving legal problems or innovating to improve your business outcomes, it’s about having a partner who will eagerly embrace the ideals that matter to your business, including giving back to the communities that elevate and ensure your continued success.

The four central pillars of our corporate social responsibility agenda are:

Our People

Our people are our greatest asset and nurturing them to be the best they can be in a competitive environment is key to ensuring our own and our clients’ success. We make sure our people are celebrated for their individuality, inspired to give back to our communities, and empowered to work for the advancement of a more diverse and inclusive work environment.

Charitable Giving

The McCarthy Tétrault Foundation was a first of its kind in Canada when it was founded in 1997 and is the cornerstone of our charitable activities. Governed by a board of directors that meets monthly, the Foundation supports all aspects of our communities, from hospitals to local artists, cultural organizations, to support networks, and law schools. 


Community and Pro Bono Work

We have some of the brightest legal minds in Canada at McCarthy Tétrault and putting that expertise to work in pro bono matters means we can do what we do best for the individuals and communities that need it most. Alongside the hundreds of individual pro bono matters we work on each year, the firm has partnered with Lawyers Without Borders to support international legal efforts, while closer to home, we are the National Law Firm Partner for Pro Bono Students Canada. We are also tremendously proud of our work on the Unaccompanied Minors Project, a McCarthy Tétrault initiative that pairs our lawyers with children who arrive alone at Toronto’s international airport to be their designated representative in refugee claims.

McCarthy Tétrault is also dedicated to the vibrant arts scenes in the cities where our offices are located. We provide pro bono services to ArtScape, a non-profit organization devoted to enhancing creativity in communities. Our lawyers regularly assist in negotiations for the lease of land and other agreements to showcase Canadian talent. We have also been involved in the 12-year project to transform Regent Park with new streets, parks and community services by assisting with right of return agreements for residents, labour and employment matters, contracts and a small business incubator.

Environmental Initiatives

Reducing our resource use, lowering our energy consumption and emissions, and eliminating as much waste as possible from our day-to-day operations are how McCarthy Tétrault helps manage our impact on the environment. Many of our offices are located in certified LEED green buildings. Significantly reducing resource use, and internal programs to reduce waste and minimise air travel through the use of state of the art video conferencing technologies also mean we can continue to offer unparalleled service without harming the global and local environment.

Community Boards

Our professionals and staff are fantastic at seeing opportunities to expand and grow businesses and this applies in the not-for-profit sector as well. Many of our lawyers lead enriching and committed lives outside of the office, dedicated to supporting the charities that matter to them by serving on boards of directors for a diverse mix of organizations. With their guidance and commitment, some of Canada’s most beloved organisations are able to grow to better achieve their goals and satisfy their mandates.