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Law Firm Directory

Browse all firms with extended profiles for The English Bar Offshore


International and cross-border work has long since been a key aspect of the practices of the elite of the London Bar. As global wealth structures generally feature offshore structures, as well as the international popularity of company structures in jurisdictions such as the Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands, offshore jurisdictions represent a growing strategic importance. Given the amount of private capital flowing through offshore jurisdictions, mainstream commercial disputes naturally arise spanning professional negligence, the enforcement of arbitral awards and foreign judgments, civil fraud and more. Sets report that restructuring and insolvencies also represent an increasingly high number of instructions in the wake of ongoing global economic turbulence.

Such matters represent core work streams for elite London barristers who are preferred counsel in the jurisdictions covered by this section, either on a more or less exclusive basis or alongside dealing with similar issues in the London courts. ‘Offshore’ is a diffuse term and can refer to a wide array of global financial centres and territories, but this section includes within its scope, and is largely centred on, the Anglophone jurisdictions in The Legal 500 Caribbean, in which English counsel can easily obtain rights of audience to appear before the courts. In Europe, it also includes Gibraltar and the Isle of Man, which also to varying extents are open to the London Bar, as well as advisory work assisting litigation in Jersey and Guernsey, where advocacy is reserved for the local Bar. The common thread linking these jurisdictions is that the apex court of these British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies is the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, in effect the UK Supreme Court sitting under another name, before which London silks are almost always used. This section does not consider the Dubai International Financial Centre, or Abu Dhabi Global Market as Offshore jurisdictions – these are covered in The English Bar in the Middle East section of The Legal 500 EMEA. Similarly, Hong Kong’s own Bar is covered as part of The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific, and the section for The English Bar in Asia includes work on temporary admission in the SAR, as well as in fora such as the Singapore International Commercial Court.

With strong relationships with offshore law firms, an elite selection of London sets have delineated themselves for their offshore work. Unlike Asia-Pacific, which has seen sets create small presences in Singapore, and more like the Middle East, chambers have resisted the temptation to plant flags on the ground in the Caribbean. Instead, hearings are handled on a fly-in-fly-out basis from London. 2023 has seen offshore jurisdictions begin to transition back to in-person hearings following the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which made virtual proceedings a necessity. In the BVI, all hearings listed in the commercial court were scheduled to return to in-person from the 18th September 2023.

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