UK200 2009

Rising dampener

It may have been tough at the top in the last financial year, but as the statistics for the full UK 200 show, it was even tougher at the bottom. John Cahill It may have been tough at the top in the last financial year, but as the statistics for the full UK 200 show, […]


Smoking brum

With the Midlands fast becoming a magnet for the UK’s legal industry, Corinne McPartland queries whether the region can sustain so many law firms Last year saw a succession of new arrivals in an already crowded Midlands legal market add to the scramble for roles on deals worth less than £5m, particularly in Birmingham, the […]

Down but not out

While the Bristol heavyweights battled for supremacy, the smaller Southern firms held their own. By Corinne McPartland Whether you are looking at the South East or South West, legal battlefields do not come much hotter than Bristol. And that is as true in a downturn as it is in a boom. Legal powerhouses Burges Salmon […]

Go North and multiply

The North has been as vulnerable as anywhere else to the recession, but the largest firms are increasing their gap at the top. By Tom Phillips It has been a mixed bag for firms in the North of England over 2008-09. In a fiercely competitive market, the past year has shown which firms, to paraphrase […]


Every sector has provided Scotland’s law firms with challenges, but projects lawyers have been feeling the recession most keenly. By Margaret Taylor Philip Rodney Scotland was top of the news agenda in the latest financial year thanks to the near collapse of the two banks that bear its name. For the Scottish firms, practically all […]

Joint accounts

This year Eversheds provided figures for its entire overseas network, as well as its UK operation. Matt Byrne recalibrates this year’s revenue rankings to unveil the alliance factor Duncan Weston This year the questionnaire Eversheds returned for The Lawyer UK 200 Annual Report included a little more information than usual. For the first time the […]

Cover up

Insurance has remained robust despite the economic downturn, but the coming year will really test firms’ mettle, says Katy Dowell There is a clear divide between the top billers in the insurance legal market and those that appear, on the surface, to be falling behind in the sector. This is driven primarily by the distinction […]

West assured

Diminishing corporate and real estate deals have taken the biggest toll on the West End players, but as Kit Chellel finds, a fighting spirit prevails They get to eat in the best restaurants, drink in the hippest bars and act for the most glamorous clients. Yet partners at West End firms have taken a hammering […]

Centre forward

The magic circle has its reputation, the regional players lower fees. What can the London mid-market draw on in these tough times? asks Luke McLeod-Roberts Hugh Maule Over the past few financial crisis-dominated months, expensive lawyers in the magic and silver circles have regularly defended the sustainability of their fee arrangements on the grounds that […]

Cost of living

Cutting costs has been the theme of the past financial year as the national firms struggle to come to terms with the economic uncertainties. By Julia Berris Most of the UK’s national firms responded to the downturn with a range of cost-cutting measures. For the vast majority the cost of redundancy consultations were realised in […]

Vexed in the city

The London large peer group has had a tough time of it, but management is looking to international growth to offset disappointing financials. By Margaret Taylor David Harris The past financial year was not kind to the firms that make up the London large peer group. All the firms in the group – CMS Cameron […]

When the magic has gone

Linklaters is now top dog in the UK and Clifford Chance has been pushed down to third place. Kit Chellel reports on the battle for supremacy among the UK elite After years of blazing a trail for the rest of the UK legal market, the magic ­circle’s march towards global domination has stuttered, stalled and, […]

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