No, it isn’t 1666* – but you could be forgiven for thinking so, as the London legal market is on fire!

The combination of a successful rollout of the UK’s vaccination program, and a robust start to the financial year has resulted in a high level of hiring confidence among UK law firms (and the market in general). Deal flow is at a 2-year high, and almost every lawyer we speak to is flat out (and has been for months).

In the US, Milbank jumping the Cravath salary scale has had a significant ripple-effect on the UK market, so financially, a move to London has never looked more rewarding.

All of this spells good news for Aussie and Kiwi lawyers with an eye on a move to London. Several of our clients are exploring options to make international hires, as there is simply too much work in the pipeline for incumbent teams to manage.

Anecdotally, there are also very high levels of candidate fatigue in the domestic lateral market; lots of jobs = lots of calls from recruiters = lots of push back from the target lawyers! Some of the best legal brands in the market are simply struggling to shake candidates loose, so it is a great time for inbound lawyers to make their mark.

We are recruiting roles across almost all transactional areas, with particular focus on M&A, Banking & Finance, TMT/IP & Commercial, Investment Funds, and Structured/Asset Finance.

Projects & Infrastructure, Competition Law and Real Estate teams are also starting to ramp up significantly. Litigation & Employment law continues to be a (frustratingly) slow burn, but interested candidates should still get in touch – we are well placed to source roles across our US, Magic Circle and International firm client base.

For an initial discussion about the market and your potential options, reach out to your local Montgomery contact – we would love to hear from you!


*The Great Fire of London was a major conflagration that swept through the central parts of London from Sunday, 2 September to Thursday, 6 September 1666