A new era for litigation?

There are international litigation practices and then there are “international” litigation practices.

Herbert Smith is one firm intent on reinforcing its international disputes reach (see last week’s blog). Meanwhile, Eversheds, which created an international dispute management role for partner John Heaps last year (see story), is only just starting to prise open the treasure chest that it hopes will contain big-ticket instructions that will flow for years to come (see blog).

UK litigation chief Ian Gray has been busy reshaping the UK litigation practice – a task that has brought some monumental challenges but also some handsome rewards.

Gray has taken on the mighty bar through what is essentially a panel review of preferred chambers, but his next challenge is to transform the UK practice into a Herbert Smith-style international group.

For Eversheds, the Holy Grail is cross-jurisdictional work.

As it is for Norton Rose (see blog).

And Allen and Overy (see blog).

The race is on, but all could be about to change in the litigation hierarchy.