Kennedys has gained its first Bermudan presence after announcing a deal with Sedgwick Chudleigh, with five lawyers set to join the firm.

Sedgwick Chudleigh had previously been associated with US firm Sedgwick. Kennedys has taken teams from the US firm in New York and Chicago over the last two months making this the firm’s third raid on Sedgwick since early September.

This now makes Kennedys the first onshore firm to have an office in the country operating as Kennedys Chudleigh.

The deal sees three new partners join in Mark Chudleigh, Alex Potts and Nick Miles. Dispute resolution partner Chudleigh will continue to lead the office with commercial litigation partner Potts and insurance & corporate partner Nick Miles providing support.

The office will also house two associates with further growth planned for the office “in due course”.

Kennedys senior partner Nick Thomas said: “The Bermuda team is one of the premier litigation and insurance law firms locally and, therefore, a natural fit with Kennedys’ global network. This arrangement provides us with the opportunity to service clients in Bermuda, the United States and the UK, as well as our numerous other locations globally. It significantly augments our global insurance practice and puts us in a class of one amongst insurance law firms.

“Our New York, Chicago and London lawyers have worked with Mark and his team and, together, we all represent some of the world’s largest insurers.”

A spokesperson for the firm said that America has been an active part of the firm’s strategy for “at the least the last five years”. Although, it has become increasingly more important over the last two.

Earlier this year it merged with 100-strong US insurance firm Carroll McNulty & Kull while expanding into four Latin American countries in the space of two months in 2016. The firm opened its doors in Brazil and Peru with Chile and Colombia following in quick succession.

Chudleigh said: “Kennedys, quite rightly, has a reputation as one of the leading international litigation and insurance firms, a status that is underscored by the merger earlier this year with US firm, Carroll McNulty & Kull, as well as recent office openings in Latin America and Paris, among other locations.

“We handle a significant amount of off-shore work so Kennedys global reach and similar client base is terrific for us.”