Friday, November 26, 2010
Professor Julian Lonbay (University of Birmingham Law School) has authored a new piece called Assessing the European Market for Legal Services: Development in the Free Movement of Lawyers in the European Union. It will be published in an upcoming issue of the Fordham International Law Journal, but you can download the article now (for free) on SSRN. Here's the abstract:
The Article focuses on recent developments in European multi-jurisdictional practice rights that have major implications for the control of entry to the legal professions and some of the related deontological rules that govern access to professional legal life across the EU and the EEA. Additionally, it looks at their impact on rules regulating the competence of lawyers and admission to the legal professions, primarily in Europe, but with some reference to the position in the United States as well.
The article concludes that the issues confronting the European legal professions and legal service providers indicate that change is on the way and must be handled with care. More work is necessary to define the core elements and legal skills and knowledge that are necessary for successful practice of law; the development of more understanding of how to successfully assess the preparedness for legal practice of candidates; the probable acceptance of an increasingly specialized legal services work force; and related sets of specialist titles that themselves may permit limited specialist practice rights across borders. The evolving European legal market will itself need servicing, and the development of effective modes of continuing professional training, easily achieved and recognized across borders, should help in enabling cross-border practice and delivery of legal services.