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Hengeler Mueller Weitzel Wirtz - Slaughter and May's "best friend" in Germany - has hired a senior counsel from Deutsche Bank.
Wolfgang Gross signed a partnership agreement with Hengeler to start work at its Frankfurt office this month.
But he was immediately sent on secondment to the New York office of Davis Polk & Wardwell, which is Hengeler's best friend in the US.
Gross will be practising at the Frankfurt office from July.
He says: "Capital markets in the US are the biggest in the world.
"I am here [New York] to learn more about the principles of US securities law.
"In Germany many of the rules are copies of those in the US. We look to the US when regulating our market."
Gross worked as a lawyer at Deutsche Bank for 10 years.
Klaus Kohler, head of legal at the bank, says Gross left because he wanted to be in the environment of a law firm.
Gross says: "I decided to leave because in my opinion Hengeler is one of the best law firms in Germany for banking and corporate law and securities law."
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