There are changes in the legal practice areas around the globe. In most countries, the legal practice is connected with current issues, from business law to white-collar crime. In the Middle East, some legal minds are using new technology to uprising legal awareness among people. In today’s terms, such people are called influencers. Having this in mind, many questions can be answered more informally. Not everything connected with legal thinking is formal and strictly professional. Some of those influencers use sport, TV shows, and other unconventional ways to help people better understand the law in a completely new way.
In all the countries abroad such as the US, UK, International, or some law firms seeking different associates who can work but at the same time be innovative and tackle all the legal challenges.
The white-collar challenge in the UAE
Previously the most active areas for legal practice in the UAE, for example, have been dispute resolution or corporate law, some energy projects, and infrastructure ones. Conducting a criminal investigation is nowadays becoming more prevalent in this region. Keeping in mind the borderless businesses, the key to better functioning is jurisprudence and the market regulations. Some of the most relevant actions taken are in white-collar crime and proper investigation.
The legal area of practice covering this issue is bringing the top white-collar investigators to the Middle East region. The more significant part of these professionals is from Europe’s larger cities such as London or Paris. The other is from the US because these jurisdictions have experience with such criminals for a more extended period.
Almost all of the investigations work with cross-border cooperation, and in that way, they are more effective. This is far better for creating a profile and conducting an investigation through a worldwide network, and it is helpful for those professionals practicing around the globe.
Projects, Energy & Infrastructure
These projects are the most productive area bringing business for legal firms. It is commonly known that UAE is investing in power, roads, and rail network for better infrastructure a lot of money. Therefore, the legal sector is one of the crucial elements for successful completion.
Law firms are covering this area are not working only in the UAE, but they are active in counseling in Iraq, Qatar, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia. In this direction, with China’s belt and road initiative, a significant increase in the work is connected with Chinese investment. Not to mention that in the future they are planning to invest more and more. There are as well big projects coming from Africa in the environmental resources area.
Renewable energy is knocking on the door for some 3-4 years, and it is taking a big part of the cake. Sustainable energy resources are demanding law practice to develop in this area and have more understanding of the countries’ energy needs. New opportunities are coming for associates to have a job in the most prominent law firms that work on the most significant and most uprising projects.
Construction and Engineering Disputes
Other than the energy sector, international law firms in the Middle East are covering the engineering and construction disputes. Having the best law firm with you can mean achieving the company’s goal.
The arbitration procedure is commonly known for resolving disputes in construction and engineering disputes. Some beginner lawyers practicing in this area are getting in common with the terms of construction to solve the uprising disputes between their clients. Therefore, they can advise the clients in the working project as project counsel so they will prevent some issues.
Arbitrations are covered in lots of rules like ICC, SCC, LCIA, DIFC-LCIA, and DIAC and sometimes UNCITRAL and different process regulations, so they need experience so the work can be done professionally from their side.
Other practice areas in the region
As technology grows and makes various ways of practicing the law available in the market, the law must grow together. Firms started investing a lot in their associate’s capabilities for them to be able to know the legal professional way of solving corporate or banking issues. Banking more often is a more buoyant sector, and there is space for the associates that can make CV full of experience in the banking sector. They work in the kind of mixed rules of conventional and Islamic finance.
In the following paragraphs, we will show some of the new aspects and tools helping the associates in their work.
Fox Rodney Search is paying attention to supporting associates, allies, and teams to get into the system and operate within the Middle East legal characteristics. They have been in the region since 2007 and have a one of its kind understanding of the specifics economically and culturally. That is very important if you have a business working in this geographical region.
As mentioned before, the law is not changing only in the traditional practice area but has new innovative approaches helped by technology and IT solutions. Some legal minds are using their phone cameras to show the world how things work. We will mention some of the most popular ones.
James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke made one cute duo of dad and his daughter to invent Carpool Caselaw. This idea was developed by Wilberforce Chambers’ Jonathan Seitler QC and his daughter, Miriam Seitler. The guests that are property law experts are reviewing the recent Court’s decision while they are driving around. This way of discussing the law on TV can bring people thinking about the decisions, understanding the law, and be informed about recent judgments.
Chrissie Wolfe (Law and Broader)
One junior lawyer started to make vlogs on a youtube channel. As a damage or injury associate, Irwin Mitchell is making posts about her lifestyle and the work as an associate, and now she’s got almost 4.000 subscribers. Some of her videos are with over 130.000 views. Other posts are with coronavirus damage and influence in the legal practice.
The Broader also presents one glam legal life and gives advice for fashion, style, and beauty.
University of Cambridge’s Elena Handtrack made the innovational channel that offers followers a quick look into the life of a hard law student life on her YouTube channel. Some of her videos have more than 2.000.000 views.
All the videos interactively have topics, for example, ‘study with me’ or ‘what is in my bag.’ It is fascinating how she managed to study and have this kind of vlogs, taking a lot of time to prepare and publish.
Mental health and wellbeing advocate, yogi, Pilates instructor, ballerina, and Instagram influencer
The Cambridge University first grad Eloise Skinner (for three times) is a lawyer in a US-based firm’s London office. Her goal is to bring a wellbeing lifestyle in business law practice and the corporate law world.
To make that happen, she is a fitness instructor, a qualified Pilates, yoga and meditation teacher, and a trained Mental Health First Aider. Isn’t that challenging? To be an expert in tax law and to practice yoga at the same time?
LinkedIn influencer and future Baker McKenzie trainee solicitor
LinkedIn has Gordon Chung as a legal influencer — he has 10,000 followers on the professional networking platform. His actions to seek an offer from the international legal office Baker McKenzie was a win, and from that moment, he started helping others by advising legal professionals.
His posts are different. Some are preposterous. For example, in one post, Chung, who completed his LLB at the City University of Hong Kong before the responsible person for a masters in corporate law at the University of Cambridge, said that he has been rejected 35 times in a single request round and as an outcome, contacted over 50 lawyers he’d never actually met for submission tips.
Cambridge University grad turned law student vlogger and diversity advocate.
It is commonly known that most of the stars are creating specific names for their public life. That is the case with the rising star Ibrahim Mohammed, known as Ibz Mo. This legal professional is a vlogger that come into our research. Some of his videos have more than 10 million views (with 122.000 subscribers). Mo finished law scull at Cambridge University, where he studied three aspects at once human, societal, and political sciences. There are a variety of posts on his channel.
Shoosmiths’ Instagram-Live Q&A
Law firm opens up to students from all universities with Instagram live Q&A
Shoosmiths‘ Instagram-Live Q&A is published on the Instagram platform, where the firm has a profile. The HR Samatha Hope manages it.
All the followers can manage to find the most common essential legal tips and at the same time to learn more about the firm. How they can get in touch is indeed an interesting way of finding clients and maybe future employees.
The clients can leave questions for them to be answered in the future by Hope in the live stream. All the applicants can be active, get used to speaking to HR, and be more confident when the real thing will happen.
All the mentioned methods of work and the legal professional’s challenges are constructing our everyday life as lawyers. The new situation we are in with the IT revolution and COVID pandemic forces law firms to find different ways of communicating with their clients and with their future employees. From changing the employment strategy to the legal practice to changing the contact with the clients, law firms have a lot to get in common with. But there are always some innovative minds that can manage to find a way and get over the legal profession’s obstacles.