Herbert Smith to open Belfast office to handle litigation due diligence

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  • 'It's a test of who can afford the tutoring". Most of the candidates who pass exceptionally do not require tutoring (which I personally consider a waste of money better spent elsewhere). However, I cannot argue the fact that the commercial training available in NI is somewhat lacking compared to what is available in the City.
    It's worth pointing out though that the 60-80% of people who do not make it into the IPLS in the first instance pay to go over the sea to do the LPC.
    Nevertheless, as mentioned above, it is well known that NI exam boards have always been much more difficult, and the exam results much better than elsewhere in the UK. With the right training in certain commercial firms in the region, there are definitely good quality lawyers available who are exposed to a good variety of work. I've also dealt with a number of English lawyers supposedly in very respectable firms who are completely incompetent. Fact.

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  • IHateBPP - smashed.

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  • The nature of these sausage factories is also that of a dead end rather than a stepping stone to an actual career with the firm. Essentially, you start on the sausage factory floor and stay there.
    The working culture certainly won't be that of being on call twenty four hours a day either as the staff won't have any incentive, monetary or otherwise, to do so as they're aware that their factory exists simply because it's cheap.
    This will only attract staff who only stay for a short period of time then leave due to boredom, often with a trail of negligence in their wake due to their inexperience and the inexperience of the management.

    ^ 'I Hate BPP' is spot on with these comments.

    No doubt it will be staffed by one lawyer who barely spends any time in the NI office (because no decent lawyer would want to be there) and the majority of their time will be spent back in the main office, managing at arms length analysing spreadsheets.
    The grunt work will be done by the hundreds of desperate graduates itching for legal work experience. Many hoping but not realising till further down the line there is not a cat in hell's chance of a training contract . Morale will be abysmal as the employers demand the earth for a pittance.

    On the upside Im sure it will be a success and at least its creating employment.

    I don't agree with any negative comments about NI lawyers, many I have worked with have been excellent. There are good and bad apples in every jurisdiction.

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  • I think this thread has gone off the point.
    I'm sure there are many good lawyers in Ireland.
    The problem is HS is looking to save money so the jobs created in Ireland will be the factory jobs of the legal world.
    There are plenty of desperate lawyers and paralegals so HS probably knows it will have no problem attracting people to fill these factory jobs.
    I think this move is insulting to Irish lawyers because it is essentially saying we'll use the Irish as cheap labour and keep the best jobs in London.

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  • Oh what a lot of whinging over a very sensible business move that will i) save clients money, ii) provide much needed jobs in Northern Ireland and iii) at long last show law firms as having some kind of commercial awareness and innovation (which the legal profession has previously lacked).
    Without meaning to sound like a rantogram ....please stop whinging and start seeing the bigger picture. Nobody is trying to make you obsolete! The profession is just becoming more dynamic.

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  • Richard,
    Ok true enough.
    But bear in mind that this move is only possible because there are so many desparate LPC students.
    There will come a time when this is no longer the case. Then what happens?
    When tuition fees rise to £9,000 per annum I just can't believe people will be dumb enough to self-fund the LPC to earn some crappy paralegal wage which this factory will rely on.
    We'll see.

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  • "Anonymous | 26-Nov-2010 3:05 pm", people in NI over the last few years have been desperate/stupid enough to self fund their studies at NI's IPLS while taking unpaid training contracts with no likelihood of that changing anytime soon. That'll ensure there's a willing supply of entry level production operatives for sausage factories like these in NI.

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  • Herbert Smith coming to Belfast - McGrigors the end is nigh

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  • Herbertt Smith have tapped in to the fact that there is an absolute stream of talented young lawyers flowing out of Northern Ireland without the employment oppurtunities in Northern Ireland. I am from Northern Ireland and have recently qualified in England. I hateBPP is clearly a young barrister who has either failed the BPP or has failed to secure a master on completion and the green eyed monster has reared its head in him at the sight of the mass influx of Northern Irish Lawyers and Barristers in England securing brilliant positions. Basically anyone that does a law degree in northern Ireland is guaranteed a place in an English Law School as the standard is so low. I think more of these big firms would do well to tap in to the resource of Northern Irish lawyers. Also on these large scale commercial cases document analysis is a vital cog in the operation and the steps in learning the trade. I for one think its a wonderful oppurtunity to work up the ladder

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  • So much for this being a great opportunity for people, even a sausage factory would pay more than Herbert Smith.

    http://www.rollonfriday.com/TheNews/EuropeNews/tabid/58/Id/1096/fromTab/36/Default.aspx

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