The Senate Ethics Officer is an independent Officer of the Senate, appointed pursuant to section 20.1 of the Parliament of Canada Act. The SEO is first nominated by the Prime Minister. The appointment is made by the Governor in Council under the Great Seal after consultation with the leader of every recognized party in the Senate and after approval of the appointment by resolution of the Senate following an appearance before the Senate as a whole.
This method of appointment ensures that the incumbent has the broadest support of the Senate, irrespective of party affiliation. The SEO is appointed for a renewable term of seven years and may be removed from office, only for cause, by the Governor in Council on address of the Senate.
The SEO has the same parliamentary privileges and immunities as a senator.
The current SEO, Pierre Legault, was appointed on January 10, 2018 and his term expires on January 9, 2025.