Magic circle firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is top of the list of practices from which solicitors from England and Wales have been admitted in Ireland, according to figures released today. Reporting what it called a ‘tsunami’ of admissions since the UK referendum vote in June, the Law Society of Ireland listed 30 firms from which four or more solicitors had registered in Ireland. Freshfields, with 117 transferees, was followed by Eversheds with 86 and Slaughter and May with 40. 

In all, the Law Society of Ireland said it will welcome a record 1,347 new additions to the roll by the end of the year, beating the previous record set in 2008 by more than 500. 

Law Society director general Ken Murphy said: ‘The tsunami of new solicitors has been caused by the Brexit-driven transfer decisions of some 810 England and Wales-qualified solicitors to take out a second jurisdictional qualification, in Ireland.’

Solicitors qualified in England and Wales may enrol in Ireland without further qualifications under the 1991 mutual-recognition regime between the two jurisdictions. The current fee is 300 euros.  

One reason for obtaining an Irish qualification is to retain rights of audience in the Court of Justice of the EU. Murphy added that ‘so far, the Law Society of Ireland has no knowledge that any of the England-based firms intend to open an office in this jurisdiction’.