The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.


All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Briefing encounters

Banks have become more sophisticated in the way they choose their law firms. But have they got it right yet? By Christopher Stoakes.

This is the time of year when banks begin to think about switching the law firms they instruct. The transaction-intensive months up to the year-end are over, so the need to maintain relationships with favoured firms recedes. At the same time, those intense months may have revealed shortcomings in the law firms a bank uses. Now is the time to review the selection procedure, with a view to putting a revised panel in place before the summer.

Investment banks tend to have an informal group of firms that they rotate depending purely on price. The issuer is paying, either directly or indirectly, or the legal fees are factored into the mandate. The pool of firms with the requisite expertise is small. The banks and firms know each other well. So price is the determining factor ­ although, increasingly, there is the question of whether a firm can offer both English and New York law expertise or has an office in the issuer's jurisdiction.

Commercial banks are different. Their needs are wider and more prosaic. Typically, a commercial bank will have a panel of up to eight firms. One or two may be heavyweights, regarded as the bank's principal lawyers and used sparingly to help the marketability of particular deals.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.

SUBSCRIBE ONLINE TODAY

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually

FREE 7 DAY TRIAL

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors

LOGIN NOW

Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree