SMITH Bernal International, the court reporting and litigation support company, has launched a global support network for its 1,500 or so clients.

The company, which owns the LiveNote court reporting transcription system, has principal offices in London, Philadelphia and Hong Kong.

Under its new support arrangement, Hong Kong is co-ordinating firms in the Pacific Basin and Australia, and Philadelphia is overseeing 75 firms linked with Smith Bernal in the US.

The company, which has an annual turnover of £100 million, provides a range of IT services to major City law and accountancy firms, as well as to courts and government departments.

Its LiveNote system has been used in notable hearings, such as the OJ Simpson trial and the Maxwell case.

Chair Graham Smith said: “With globalisation of the world economy, international litigation is growing rapidly with the inevitable associated problems of geography and efficiency.”

He said that all the offices were linked by email in order to allow lawyers to call any of the offices from which all aspects of the deposition/ arbitration process could be co-ordinated.