The World Cup is upon us, meaning a month of early finishes and web browsers quickly minimised whenever the boss walks past. Luckily, England games fall in the evening or at the weekend, so absenteeism should not be the problem it was in previous tournaments. But with 5,500 foreign lawyers working in England and Wales, bosses should still ask if anyone needs a long lunch.
Spare a thought too for global firms trying to maintain harmony during this time. Obiter estimates that Dentons, for example, has offices in 21 of the 32 countries competing, making international conference calls that bit more fraught. Still, at least someone, somewhere in the firm will be celebrating on 15 July.
As usual, enterprising firms have capitalised on the tournament with their comms efforts. Especially employment lawyers, warning about the chances of staff nursing more than just regret at a goalless draw with Tunisia. Obiter was particularly impressed with Essex firm Pinney Talfourd, which explained the reasons for FIFA’s rigid protection of its trade marks, before suggesting this might be an opportune time for businesses to think about doing the same. Pinney Talfourd would, of course, be happy to help.
The days of part-time players are long gone, but England will be sending one lawyer: ITV pundit and international Eniola Aluko, who graduated from Brunel Law School with a first and has worked in sports and entertainment law. In an interview, she said her presence highlights a shift in broadcasting: ‘There’s a tendency for some male pundits to rock up and take it for granted. I can’t afford to do that, so I have to geek out on all the stats and facts and make sure I am not seen as a token woman.’