At the moment, international law firms cannot practise foreign law in Romania, cannot practise under their own brand, and foreign lawyers cannot practise Romanian law.
An amendment to the Legal Profession Statute has been drafted and is expected to be passed in the next few months. The amendment will allow international firms to practise foreign law under their own brands, and foreign lawyers will be able to take exams to qualify in Romanian law.
At the moment, international firms in Romania are required to dilute their brands by practising in association with Romanian lawyers. Linklaters Romanian practice is named Miculiti & Asociatii Linklaters.
The move has been welcomed by most, although there is disquiet among the more conservative ranks of the Romanian bar.
Dragos Radu of Badea Radu & Gutium, a firm recently formed by three breakaway senior Linklaters lawyers, said: “It seems to us there is a clear wave of feeling within the local legal environment towards harmonising the present legislation regarding lawyers with those of other EU countries.”
Linklaters is the only global firm in Romania. Other major foreign firms in Romania include Altheimer & Gray, CMS Cameron McKenna, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Haarmann Hemmelrath & Partner and Squire Sanders & Dempsey.
Hugh James Ford Simey has launched a new advocacy unit to offer solicitor and barrister services under one roof The launch of the unit follows recent changes in the rules on legal service provision. The Welsh firm has three in-house barristers who can provide instant, independent advice to their solicitor colleagues and the firm’s clients.