US law firm targets grads with launch of Belfast support hub

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By Thomas Connelly on

Will create 78 new roles


A US law firm specialising in employment and immigration is set to launch a support hub in the heart of Belfast — and its looking for graduates to fill the majority of the newly-created roles.

Ogletree Deakins says the centre will provide paralegal and admin support to its US-based immigration practice group. This will include handling various working visas and certifications, along with a host of “time sensitive work” for the outfit’s “high-volume business immigration clients”.

The firm — which has 53 offices throughout the US, Europe, Canada and Mexico — is looking to create 78 jobs over the next three years, with positions aimed at both law and non-law grads, as well as those with one to three years of paralegal experience. The positions will have an average salary of £22,891.

Ogletree currently employs around 400 people, including 100 immigration lawyers, 200 paralegals, and more than 100 support professionals.

The economic development agency for Northern Ireland, Invest NI, has offered £312,000 in financial support towards the new roles which it says will generate annual salaries of £1.78 million into the country’s economy.

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Northern Ireland’s economy minister, Gordon Lyons, commented: “The legal services sector in Northern Ireland continues to grow and I am pleased to announce that Ogletree Deakins — a well-established international firm — is setting up here… With a pool of 600 new law and legal studies graduates a year, I am sure the firm will find the talent it needs; in fact it has already filled 25 of the positions available.”

Matthew Keen, managing shareholder, Ogletree Deakins, added:

“A law degree is not a requirement to join the team, and we offer continuous investment in training to allow employee career growth. We are excited to open this new legal support centre, and we are very excited about our future here.”

A raft of major law firms, including Allen & Overy, Baker McKenzie, Fieldfisher, Shoosmiths and TLT, have set-up shop in Belfast in recent years. Many have also gone on to launch training contract programmes in the city.

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