The Rise Of Law Firms Transcending Borders To Take On Global Components

Written by Fatima Freifer
Written by Fatima Freifer


case management software, practice management software, legal accounting software, legaltech, technology for lawyers, case management, immigration, london, united kingdomcase management software, practice management software, legal accounting software, legaltech, technology for lawyers, case management, immigration, london, united kingdom


Today, the world is more interconnected than ever before. New technologies and collaborative tools such as legal client relationship management software for legal firms, online law practice management software and legal timekeeping and billing software make it easier for businesses to collaborate across borders. As the global economy continues to grow, more and more law firms are expanding their scope to operate on a global scale.  With so many factors to consider, there are pros and cons to building a global law firm. [1]

It is becoming apparent that no organisation can afford to work in isolation in our increasingly connected world. Every company needs to establish connections with suppliers, partners, and customers on a global scale, which is where the benefits of document management system and secure document management come in place. [2] This means establishing offices or locations outside of your home country to expand business reach. A global law firm is not just a company that operates in multiple countries. Rather, it is an organisation that has expertise and services covering multiple jurisdictions.

What Does a Global Law Firm Look Like?

For a law firm to be considered “global,” it must operate in multiple countries outside of its home jurisdiction. A global law firm will have offices in other countries, employ local associates, and service clients across the globe.  [3] In larger, more established firms, different offices are focused on specific industry sectors, such as energy, health care, and financial services. [4]

Legal Concerns When Building a Global Law Firm

Before jumping into building a global law firm, it is imperative for a firm to prepare for the legal challenges that come with it.  This is where  having a law firm client relationship manager is crucial.A Law firm client relationship management assists with automating repetitive tasks, freeing up the focus of time and energy to be expended  to the bigger vision of the organisation.

One of the first challenges presented when building a global law firm is finding and hiring the right talent.  client profiles legal software, client management software for lawyers and client management software for law firms can assist with this task. [5] It is important to consider how to attract talent from other countries, as well as how to provide incentives for them to stay with the firm long term. Building a global law firm also means modifying existing processes and systems to comply with differing legal requirements. It is essential to understand the legal landscape in the target countries. It is also necessary to determine which standards need to be complied with. A compliance system should also be put in place in order to fulfil the legal compliant measures as a firm grows. [6]

Strategies for building a global law firm

There are a few key strategies a firm may employ in order to get off to a strong start. First is conducting a competitive analysis. This will allow an organisation to understand the current position in the market, as well as where improvements can be made. [7] The hiring strategy will then be prioritised beginning with hiring associates who can assist with expansion to other countries. It is also helpful to consider hiring paralegals to help ease some of the pressure in the office and free attorneys up for strategic thinking. [8] It is also important to consider investing in technology and tools that help automate tasks and streamline processes to save time and money. From there, organising the expansion strategy becomes imminent. It is fundamental to consider how to expand economically as well as the regulatory and cultural challenges in each country the law firm will be expanding to. The firm structure will need to be planned according to the work culture in the relevant country. [9]

Developing an International Expansion Strategy

Before completely restructuring the firm with an eye towards international expansion, organisations make sure it is the right move for the firm. When building a global law firm, it is important to develop an international expansion strategy by determining if expanding internationally is a good fit.  [10] After conducting the competitive analysis, it may be noted that there are specific countries that a typical firm is out-performing in. These may be good places to start. Outlining an expansion strategy is crucial in order to stay abreast with updates and identifying the best countries to expand to. This information helps to determine the best expansion strategy for a given firm.


While building a global law firm will come with its fair share of challenges, it can be an incredible milestone achievement.  Building a global law firm has its advantages and disadvantages. However, it can be done with an implemented strategy to overcome many of the challenges posed by expansion.

The opportunity to service clients across the globe and transcend borders will create a limitless approach. From hiring associates in other countries to complying with varying legal requirements, building a global law firm will present many new challenges. However, it will also allow for expansion of a firm’s reach and provide a valuable service to businesses of all shapes and sizes.


[1] How Law Firms Can Scale to Take on International Client Work, Robert McHugh, APRIL 27, 2021

[2] New Roles in Law and How Legal Tech Is Developing Them, Fatima Freifer

[3] A London law firm with an international outlook, Russell Cohen

[4] International Clients

[5] Competition Within The Legal Industry, Fatima Freifer

[6] What’s it like to work with international clients? Anna Hirst, JUL 10, 2017

[7] The Main Challenges UK Law Firms Can Expect In 2022, Fatima Freifer   

[8] The Legal Industry is Starting to Collaborate — Why Now and Why It Matters, Mark A. Cohen

[9] Collaboration Between Law Firms,

[10] The Collaboration Imperative for Today’s Law Firms: Leading High-Performance Teamwork for Maximum Benefit, Heidi K Gardner, PhD Harvard Business School


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