No ABS says US

All eyes were focused on George Osborne yesterday as he delivered his Budget speech and dashed the hopes of all those in the market
for a £2m property.

So you’d be forgiven for missing a New York Bar announcement that could have just as much of an impact on City lawyers.

The state bar association has ruled that lawyers in New York State can’t join a firm with non-lawyer owners – meaning UK firms with a base in the Big Apple can’t take external investment.

Unless something drastic happens, the decision isn’t likely to impact on the biggies that already have Manhattan bases; Clifford Chance and Freshfields aren’t looking like being ABS contenders any time soon.

But for DLA Piper, which owns a stake in ABS LawVest, it could be about as welcome as Osborne’s granny tax.

Here’s hoping no DLA-er was about to exchange on a new mansion.