Melanie Polowin Partner

Speaks:  English

Year of Call: 1993 - Ontario

Primary phone: +1 613-786-0244

Fax: +1 613-788-3462


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Primary office:  Ottawa

Melanie Polowin

Melanie Polowin is an experienced practitioner of employment law. An Ottawa-based Gowling WLG partner with more than 22 years of experience, Melanie provides pragmatic, real-world advice and solutions to employers.

Melanie was recognized by The Best Lawyers in Canada 2015 as "Lawyer of the Year" for employment law in the Ottawa, Ontario area, and speaks regularly on key employment law issues of concern to Canadian employers. In 2017, she achieved recognition in the inaugural Acritas Stars database, which is based on Acritas' global Sharplegal survey of more than 4,000 general counsel. Feedback on Melanie obtained through the survey included: "I like her a lot. She is very responsive and very knowledgeable and she is also very solution-driven."

Melanie advises private sector Canadian and international employers of all stages and sizes, on every phase of the employment relationship, from recruitment through termination, startup to wind-down. She assists buyers, sellers and investors to understand and manage the employment aspects of corporate life-cycle events, in connection with new entrants into the Canadian market, financings, mergers, acquisitions and IPOs.

Melanie works closely with clients to implement meaningful proprietary interest and non-competition protections, and to develop effective templates, contracts, policies, and risk-reduction strategies that reflect the practical and unique needs of each client's business. Melanie is also a skilled negotiator with extensive experience in managing and resolving employment disputes.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:


  • Canadian Bar Association
  • County of Carleton Law Association
  • Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario
  • Ottawa Technology Lawyers Group

Melanie has presented at numerous conferences and client seminars on a variety of issues, including compensation planning, employment documentation, workplace disability and accommodation, harassment, and effective management practices and policies.

Previous speaking engagements