Lack of mid-tier lawyers concern for law firms
Law firms in Singapore are facing a shortage of mid-tier lawyers which threatens the city state’s ambition to become a legal hub. That’s the finding of a report by Channel News Asia which says that issues such as stress are leading to experienced lawyers exiting the profession, leaving a gap between senior lawyers and graduates.
The situation is having an impact on law firm revenues. Gloria James-Civetta runs her own firm and told Channel News Asia: “Sometimes, we can’t offer a client a mid-level lawyer, so it results in us having to compromise and reduce some of our rates as well.”
The Law Society of Singapore reported in 2014 that three quarters of lawyers in the city state leave the profession within their first decade.
Apple has 500 in-house lawyers but still needs external help
When you are the biggest company in the world and taking on adversaries including the FBI you need a big army and Apple certainly has that. The global tech giant is fighting demands from the Feds to allow a backdoor into iPhone encryption and is doing so with its 500-strong in house legal team.
Bloomberg reports that Apple’s team, headed by Bruce Sewell, GC and senior vice president of legal and global security, reporting directly to CEO Tim Cook. Despite the size of the in-house team, Apple still needs external counsel. This latest battle is being assisted by a former government attorney Marc Zwillinger of specialist legal firm ZwillGen.
Although a New York court ruled that the US government is probably going too far in asking for the access to Apple products, the ruling does not set a precedent and further cases are taking place in other US states.
Eversheds in Singapore merger talks?
There are reports that international law firm Eversheds is eyeing a merger with Singapore boutique Harry Elias Partnership. Eversheds has not confirmed that talks are taking place but Asia-Pacific is a key area for expansion for the firm and the Singapore tie-up would add a team of around 60 lawyers experienced in the market.