ECLA is the umbrella organisation for 20 company lawyer associations in Europe and represents more than 32,000 individual company lawyers.
ECLA was created in 1983. It is an international non-profit association governed by Belgian law. Membership is open to national associations only. While individuals are not members of ECLA directly, each company lawyer, who is a member of a national association, can share the benefits ECLA negotiates for its members. These include discounts to conferences, legal education training, free publications and more.
During the past almost 30 years, ECLA has gained recognition as the leading representative of European company lawyers associations and their individual members. In this unrivalled position, ECLA has a platform to respond to and influence the European in-house corporate counsel network, European organisations and policy making bodies.
ECLA's primary goals are:
- To identify and eliminate regulatory threats to the position or practice of in-house lawyers;
- To identify, seize and exploit regulatory opportunities suitable to enhance the position of in-house lawyers;
- To enhance the acceptance and demand for an active role of in-house lawyers
In order to achieve these goals, ECLA is active in:
- Monitoring of the position of in-house lawyers in members' jurisdictions
- Discussions and lobbying on freedom of choice of counsel for CEOs of all European industries
- Liaison with other legal associations and international organizations
- Sharing best practices of in-house lawyers
- Networking of members
- Providing benefits to members and to 32,000 individual in-house lawyers of members