Herbert Smith and Freehills open New York office

06 Sep, 2012

International law firms and merger partners Freehills and Herbert Smith have today officially opened an office in New York.


The office will initially operate as Herbert Smith New York until Herbert Smith Freehills officially launches on 1 October, when it will become part of the new merged firm’s international network.


Designed to offer global assistance to international clients with US-related contentious issues, the New York office will focus solely on complex cross–border disputes work, specifically focused on international arbitration, anti-corruption and cross-border investigations, litigation supporting investigations and arbitration, and handling the US end of cross-border litigation for network clients


Freehills’ Chief Executive, Gavin Bell, who will be joint Chief Executive of Herbert Smith Freehills, said the office would open with an exceptionally strong team in place.


‘Opening in New York is a very exciting development and a key component in fulfilling Herbert Smith Freehills’ ambition of offering a genuinely global service to our international clients,’ said Bell.


‘We are confident the New York office will be an excellent platform to attract a wide variety of complex cross-border disputes work and confirm our standing as a premier global disputes brand.’


Prior to establishing the New York office, Herbert Smith announced last month the recruitment of six leading US commercial litigation partners from Chadbourne & Parke and today confirms the additional recruitment of fifteen fee-earners from the same firm.


The New York team also includes international arbitration partner, Chris Parker and associate Robert Rothkopf, who have relocated from Herbert Smith’s London office to establish the international arbitration practice in the US.


Overall, the New York office opens with 6 partners, 14 fee-earners, and 9 business services staff, and will be headed by Thomas Riley, who will take on the role of the managing partner.


The New York office will be in temporary accommodation on 1745 Broadway, NY, NY 10019 until it moves to its permanent office in January 2013.


Jonathan Scott, Herbert Smith’s senior partner said: “We are delighted to announce the official opening of our New York office. Establishing an office and building a leading cross-border disputes practice in New York has been high on our list of priorities. We are very excited to extend Herbert Smith’s, and ultimately the Herbert Smith Freehills’, network of offices in such a strategic location.”


Sonya Leydecker, head of Herbert Smith’s global dispute resolution practice said: “We wish to offer a genuinely global service to our disputes clients. Opening in New York is a crucial element in this strategy and significantly enhances our global disputes capability. I am particularly pleased with the strength of the team we have put in place. These are all very experienced disputes lawyers, who enable us to offer a high-level capability to clients from day one.”

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