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English lawyers flock to register in Ireland

18 July 2017

Ireland's Roll of Solicitors has experienced a "tsunami" of England and Wales solicitors over the past year, Irish Law Society Director General Ken Murphy says.

Writing in the June issue of the Law Society magazine Gazette, Mr Murphy says the number of Brexit-driven new names on the Roll of Solicitors in Ireland now exceeds 1,100, of whom around 220 have taken out practising certificates.

Image of Ireland flag

"How many of these 1,100 have since travelled to Ireland - other than for a brief vacation, or earlier this year to watch the English rugby team being soundly defeated by Ireland in Dublin? As far as the Law Society has evidence, the answer is 'none'. Not one," he says.

Mr Murphy says the English and Welsh lawyers have acted for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with any intention to establish in Ireland.

"The motivation of most is to maximise their status as practitioners in EU and competition law matters, relating to such issues as right of audience in the European Court of Justice, and the entitlement of their clients to legal privilege in EU investigations, in the post-Brexit world."

A comment in the Law Society of England and Wales' Gazette on the story says that  English and Welsh solicitors far outnumber the approximate 350 Irish-national solicitors who registered to practise in Ireland during the year.

"In total, 1,448 solicitors were admitted to the Irish roll of solicitors over the past 12 months," it says.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019