Law Society raises European profile

THE LAW Society is increasing its profile in Europe, with contact between the profession, politicians and officials growing during the past six months.

A half-yearly report released by the Brussels office of the Law Societies of England, Wales and Scotland shows the office now has more input in European issues, and members of the profession are increasingly being called on to provide views on a range of EU policy and legislative developments.

In the six months to December the office was involved in discussions on subjects including the Acquired Rights Directive (ARD), Central and Eastern Europe, equal opportunities, and rights of establishment.

The number of outside enquiries has also grown, and ties with German, Dutch and Belgian Bars have strengthened.

Brussels representative Patrick Oliver says the office is now well regarded by the main EU institutions.

“We're involved with more issues than before, we have more contact with officials and MEPs, and we're giving our views and comments on more issues than before,” says Oliver.

“We've been here for five years and we're seen by the institutions as a reliable organisation that provides sound comments on EU policies. We've built up a good reputation.”