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Global Law Firms, Emerging Markets, and Legal Translation

July 12, 2012

An article from the July 7th edition of the Economist discusses how British law firms are expanding their global footprint. Unlike Dewey & Leboeuf which tried to grow too fast and ended up going bankrupt, London’s top 5 law firms are growing their revenues and profits at an impressive and steady pace and this is largely coming from growth in emerging markets.

Allen & Overy has recently opened up offices in Jakarta and Vietnam. Clifford Chance is bullish on China, the Middle East, and Brazil. And while the large number of Western firms moving into China has led to lower fees due to competition, China is still a hugely important and growing market for American and British law firms.

In terms of legal translation, more business for law firms overseas means a growing need for talented legal translators and multilingual support for global casework. And as global businesses themselves, law firms must prove compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) related to their foreign operations, which requires translating documents from various foreign offices into English.

For law firms conducting business in multiple regions, legal translation can present different challenges related to cost and efficiency. For high volumes of translation work, options including machine translation, online sifting, and document review should all be considered. Overcoming those challenges requires the right mix of technological and human support, and the right translation company to help guide you through the process.