Legal

Centre for excellence

The UK's offer

  • The UK is the world's second largest legal centre in terms of revenue
  • Over 200 foreign law firms have chosen the UK for overseas offices
  • English law is used in 40% of all global corporate arbitrations
  • A talent pool of 342,000 people in the sector - with deep pools of talent across the UK

Home of the world's business law

The popularity of English and Welsh law drives the UK’s position as provider of the world's legal services. Some 27% of the world’s 320 legal jurisdictions, are governed by systems based on English common law - by far the most popular choice for cross-border contracts. 

The UK legal services sector, second in size only to the US, is recognised globally for its quality of advice. Over 1,600 members of the Bar of England and Wales receive instructions from clients abroad.

Supported by excellence in legal training and education, the UK is renowned as the leading global centre for dispute resolution.

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International reach and services

The largest international law firms in London have between 45% and 65% of their lawyers based outside the UK, and many other London-based firms have between 10% and 20% of lawyers overseas.

The CityUK, “Legal excellence, internationally renowned: UK legal services 2018”

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Resolving international disputes

The UK is the leading global centre for international dispute resolution. 40% of corporate arbitrations internationally use English and Welsh law – more than twice as many as the next governing law

200+

foreign law firms

from over 40 jurisdictions have offices in the UK,

10,000

people employed in the UK

by law firms based overseas

5

of the top 15

law firms in the world have their main base of operations in the UK

Growth in legal services

The UK legal services sector is forecast to produce turnover of £30.82bn and net exports of £4.25bn by 2020.

Growth in exports

The UK supplies legal expertise to the world - trade surplus of legal services grew 70% over the past 10 years

Growth in exports

Growth in revenues

Revenues of the UK’s largest 100 law firms grew by 10% to £24.2bn in 2018

Growth in revenues

Europe's legal centre

The largest centre in Europe, the UK accounts for a third of Western European legal services fee revenues

Europe's legal centre

Future proofing the UK’s legal capabilities

A new flagship 18 courtroom legal centre providing world-class expertise in tackling cybercrime, fraud and economic crime will be completed in 2025 in the Square Mile.

It is being developed jointly by the City of London Corporation, HM Courts and Tribunal Services.  

Partner story

Burness Paul LLP: 'Clients tell us they love Scotland! And our clients are right - outside of London, no other UK region attracts more foreign direct investment projects.'

Burness Paul LLP: 'Clients tell us they love Scotland! And our clients are right - outside of London, no other UK region attracts more foreign direct investment projects.'

Partner Story

King & Wood Mallesons: 'It is very important to have a presence in the UK because of its position as a major financial centre. It is crucial.'

King & Wood Mallesons: 'It is very important to have a presence in the UK because of its position as a major financial centre. It is crucial.'

Everything you need

The UK offers you everything you need to grow your business.

We have a global outlook, which means we understand your business needs. The depth and breadth of our offer mean unparalleled opportunities for you to grow. Innovation is what we do - creating an inspirational ecosystem where you can thrive. 

Choose the UK