As the election campaign enters the few final days, the thoughts of the outcome are starting to become even more prominent in the heads of those who are involved in the legal industry.
Whilst it is difficult to cover off all of the potential changes Brexit could have on the legal industry, it is possible to cover the broader issues, which are most likely to arise as a result of Brexit.
Will it affect the law?
Most obviously, a Brexit outcome will impact the law itself and in some cases, certain areas of the law will be completely altered. As an example, intellectual property would be greatly affected by Brexit. Of course, specific changes will depend heavily on the type of deal the UK strikes with the EU, however it is almost certain that Brexit will only create more work for UK lawyers.
How will it affect Law Firms and their clients?
Amongst all of the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, many clients are flocking to their Solicitors’ for advice. Such is the insecurity; many leading law firms are operating around the clock to deal with the excessive client demand. There is a real possibility that exiting the EU could result in increased costs and administrative hurdles for multinational companies.
It may not just be the larger firms that are affected; high street firms may also be faced with changes to its employment obligations and additional costs. Even though we are still awaiting the exact content of the deal, UK based businesses may face having to pay customs duties, tariffs and taxes for the first time since the establishment of the EU.
How will it affect Law Firms business?
Many firms who are involved in cross-border transactional work in sectors such as finance and banking may see a decline in profitability. With all the uncertainty surrounding the content of the deal, the number of big transactions with the UK has slightly declined. The flipside to this though is that if we were to see the value of the pound drop, UK firms may appear more cost effective to international clients, which could attract additional work.
It is important to remember that law firms are businesses themselves and have to plan for the potential effects of Brexit.
Obviously until Thursday 12th December, your guess is as good as ours to which direction the voting will go, but whatever happens, all those involved in the legal industry will need to be prepared for either outcome.
Legal Recruitment Consultant