News

Work here if you want an Irish practising certificate, UK solicitors told

By on
7

Irish Law Society throws post-Brexit curveball

Dublin

The Law Society of Ireland has said England and Wales-qualified solicitors will not be entitled to practising certificates unless they have a presence in the country.

The decision will come as a major blow to UK law firms, many of which have gone to considerable efforts to register their solicitors in the Republic of Ireland to ensure they’re able to continue practising in the EU post-Brexit.

But legal bigwigs in Ireland have now said that “Irish qualified solicitors who are based in England and Wales and are seeking a practising certificate from the Society will not be entitled to a practising certificate”.

The Irish Law Society added that “such solicitors will not be issued with a practising certificate by the Society unless they can demonstrate in the course of their applications that they practise (or intend to practise) in Ireland from a physical establishment in Ireland”.

The 2021 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

The development appears to have taken its Chancery Lane counterpart by surprise. “To hear about this development through a release on the Law Society of Ireland’s website is very disappointing,” the Law Society of England and Wales said in a statement yesterday. “We would have expected to learn of any proposed changes in advance and formally.”

Stats last year showed that over 2,700 solicitors from across England and Wales had coughed up the €300 (£265) administration fee and registered in Ireland in the wake of the Leave vote. Magic circle duo Allen & Overy and Linklaters lead the way with 297 and 259 registrations, respectively.

But the news isn’t entirely new. Legal Cheek reported last year that the Law Society of Ireland had sent a letter to its solicitors revealing a number of stipulations for those seeking to rely on Irish practising certificates post-Brexit. This included “establishment” in Ireland.

Sign up to the Legal Cheek Newsletter

7 Comments

Laz

Hahaha top trolling

Ramo

Surely you could just apply for admission to the roll in NI and then apply for admission to ROI. Did they even think of this – no need for an office after all ..

Ramo is a clown

How does applying to the NI Law Soc help at all? Still need a presence in the country.

Idiot above ^

Well it’s a lot cheaper to get an office in Belfast than pay rent in Dublin (which is a lot more than London). I have friends qualified with a Mc firm in England that does not have a presence in Ireland and they are admitted to NI and ROI. The need for an office is silly when the whole world is going remote anyway. We have lawyers in other firms qualified in Panama and Cayman Islands yet they aren’t asking for an office there.

PURDY

Not sure I understand what you mean. The jurisdiction is the Republic of Ireland (ROI). If you had an office in Northern Ireland you wouldn’t have a presence in the jurisdiction, as Northern Ireland is part of the UK not ROI.

The reason behind this is because of Brexit. From Jan 1 2021, UK businesses no longer have complete freedom to provide services from the UK to businesses/individuals in the EU. They have to have a presence in the EU. It’s no surprise that the Irish Law Society has had to do this. I suppose they left it until now because they were waiting (like everyone else) for the ‘oven ready’ deal, we were all promised.

As far as remote working is concerned. I’m all for that, but good relationships between countries are needed to facilitate this and all sorts of other freedoms for their citizens. The gormless fools in the upper echelons of society in this country don’t seem get this.

Ramo

You are incorrect, if you read the law society of Ireland website it states that the position remains unchanged for NI lawyers seeking admission in ROI. Not every law firm in Ni has an office in ROI – most don’t but they do have qualified ROI lawyers. All that is needed is that your insurance covers work in ROI.

His Eminence Fr. Alan Padraig O’Blacker, LL.B (Dublin), BU.M (Cork), Order of the Pint o’Guinness, Scourge of the English, Knight of the Order of St Patrick, SC (Highest)

As an Irish peer, am I exempt?

Join the conversation

Related Stories