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Taiwanese corporate firm Qi Lin International Law Offices has split into two as a result of internal partner disputes
Qi Lin, a second-tier corporate firm established more than seven years ago, will split into two firms practising as Winkler Partners and Yang Ming Partners. Name partner Robin Winkler will head Winkler Partners from the existing Qi Lin offices. Mark Ohlson and Robert Lee, who has a good stable of telecoms clients, will run Yang Ming Partners from new offices. Winkler will have around 28 fee earners and Yang Ming about 14. The Qi Lin partners intend to take advantage of the Lawyers' Law, which was introduced as part of Taiwan's World Trade Organisation accession agreement. Following the passage of the law, foreign partners already licensed as consultants were automatically given permission to practise Taiwanese law and form partnerships with Taiwanese lawyers. Yang Ming, however, has unlicensed foreign lawyers and may face problems over how to structure the partnership so as to integrate them. It is believed that this was one of the problems facing the Qi Lin partnership.