Legal Recruitment from Ten-Percent Legal

Monday, April 14, 2008

Lawyers working in offshore jurisdictions

Lawyers working in offshore jurisdictions

In 2002, we were approached by a Bermudan firm of good repute and medium size, looking for a recruitment agency in the UK to handle their recruitment of a conveyancing lawyer. We agreed a sole supplier arrangement which basically involved us placing advertisements in the Law Society Gazette, handling the enquiries that stemmed from that, and telephone interviewing the candidates in the first instance. We also posted out to Bermuda a copy of each CV for the 75 applicants, together with our recommendations for actual face to face interviews in London.

As it happened, they decided to fly out a professional locum for a week to see whether he was of interest, and then 2 weeks later informed us that they were compelled by law to employ a Bermudan lawyer who had applied for the post.

What is the moral of the tale?

Firstly, posts in places like Bermuda are greatly sought after, as not only is the location perceived to be glamorous, the pay tends to be rather good.

Secondly, whenever a post is advertised, the agent dealing is going to be inundated with applications.

Thirdly, local legislation can throw rather hefty spanners into the works.

Finally, we discovered afterwards from speaking to other Bermudans and offshore lawyers, that most firms do not expect you to remain at the firm for longer than 12 months, which appears to be the norm for going and living overseas and taking one of these posts. Marmite, frosty mornings and a pint of bitter are some of the main contributory factors. You can only get so much sun, sea and sand before deciding you are a little bored by it all! Furthermore, I have heard it said that these firms do not actually factor in any time off – they almost assume that an on shore lawyer working for them has no family or social life, and therefore needs to work a 70-80 hour week…

The grass may not be greener on the other side…. Legal Recruitment Consultants since 2000, Ten Percent has over 4,500 solicitors registered, and over 1,500 vacancies online at any time. It is called Ten-Percent due to the annual donation of profits to charity that occurs.

Jonathan Fagan,
0845 644 3923 for press interviews or comments.

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