Leading Scottish commercial firm McClure Naismith has gone into administration with the loss of 42 jobs among partners and staff, administrators announced yesterday.

McClure Naismith was founded in Glasgow in 1826 and in 1981 became one of the first Scottish firms to open a London office. It has 26 partners and 109 staff.

Administrators FRP Advisory said that 80 jobs had been saved by the agreed sale of work in progress along with the movement of partners to five other firms. They are:

  • Harper MacLeod - five partners
  • Maclay Murray & Spens - five partners
  • Burness Paull - three partners
  • Morton Fraser - one partner
  • HBJ Gateley - one partner

The fate of the London-based staff is unknown. 

The joint administrators are retaining 14 staff of the firm and said ‘further developments are expected’ regarding partners and staff who have yet to confirm destination firms. ‘It is with great regret that the remaining 42 partners and staff have been made redundant, for whom the joint administrators at FRP Advisory will provide as much support as possible.’  

Tom MacLennan, joint administrator and partner with FRP Advisory said: ‘We are pleased to have negotiated agreements facilitating employment with a wide range of firms and wish them and their new staff every success. 

‘We would also like to extend our appreciation to the Law Society of Scotland and the Solicitors Regulation Authority for their support.’

Lorna jack

Lorna Jack (pictured), chief executive of the Law Society of Scotland said in a statement: ‘McClure Naismith is one of Scotland’s oldest firms and has been a proud part of the Scottish legal profession for almost 200 years.

‘We are sorry to see it go into administration but understand this was the only viable option given the challenges faced by the business.’

She added: ‘Whilst today’s announcement is regrettable, our own research shows increased optimism within the legal profession as well as a more buoyant legal market. That said, the profession is undergoing phenomenal change with digitalisation and technology, changing expectations from clients and new entrants to the market all requiring firms to adapt and innovate in the way they do business.  

‘It underlines the need for firms to be flexible and to modernise in what is a highly competitive market.’