Rescuing Ireland’s banks was a portentous decision in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. It has resulted in crippling consequences for the country, with the Irish government having to receive an €85bn bailout from the EU and the International Monetary Fund in November 2010. However, what the move hasn’t changed is the league of established Irish law firms which have diversified core practices and picked up some hefty post-crisis work at home and abroad.
Pockets of the Irish economy are clearly surviving, as evidenced by the restructuring of distressed assets that has generated unprecedented work for the ‘Big Five’ and those catching up behind. Upon visiting Dublin, the overwhelming consensus among the firms that spoke to Legal Business – including the top and mid-tier players – was that firms specialising in corporate restructuring, insolvency and professional indemnity have held strong in this fiercely competitive market. Foreign direct investment (FDI) has also been a pillar for economic and law firm survival, as attractive tax rates and a lowered cost base maintains global interest from major corporates.