So You Want To Be An International Lawyer?

This article, written by Catherine Baksi (@legalhackette), was originally published on the Guardian website at 10.57 EDT on Monday 1 October 2012. To view the original article, click here.

In the 1990s, the Pet Shop Boys urged everyone to go west, but these days, for UK international law firms, the opposite direction of travel is more attractive.

The increased globalisation of trade and state of the world economy means UK law firms are going east in search of clients and revenue.

On Monday, Herbert Smith, or Herbies as the city law firm is affectionately known, merges with Australian firm Freehills. Herbert Smith Freehills comprises 20 worldwide offices with 2,800 lawyers. The union will form the eighth largest law firm in the world and the largest law firm in Asia Pacific — one of the fastest growing legal markets in the world.

So, if you see yourself working on multi-jurisdictional corporate deals, energy projects or international arbitrations in the region how might you persuade firms such as Herbert Smith Freehills that you’re the right person for the job? “As well as being an absolutely first rate lawyer, you need a sort of cultural affinity. You’ve got to enjoy working with people from different cultural backgrounds,” says David Willis, managing partner at the firm. Continue reading