As a Legal Recruitment Consultant in our International Team here at Interlink Recruitment, I cover a variety of legal markets across the globe, with one of my areas of expertise being the German legal market. In this blog post, I will be discussing the legal market in Germany, focusing on areas of growth and development as a result of the pandemic.
In my role, I regularly speak with some of the best legal talent and top-tier law firms in the region, allowing me to understand the impact that Covid-19 has had on the firms in Germany and across the globe. While some have experienced a short decline in their business, with several transactions being cancelled or postponed when the pandemic first hit, most departments reported an increase in their activity over time. Most notably, there has been increased activity in areas such as employment law, insolvency law, family law and the development of legal technology to accommodate the influx in demand for flexible working hours.
Digitalisation in German Law Firms
One of the main changes we have seen in the German legal market due to the pandemic is a big push towards digitalisation, in particular the digitalisation of justice in the German courts. The courts in Germany have a reputation for being rather slow and old-fashioned, the pandemic has shown that there is an immediate need for them to develop an easier system for the administration of justice. The pandemic has forced the courts to move in the right direction to keep legal proceedings running smoothly.
Most Impacted Practice Areas
In the Legal 500 market overview of Germany, it has been noted that while the M&A sector was hit the hardest by the pandemic, many other practice areas have escaped largely unscathed and several are booming more than ever. The insolvency sector in particular is expecting a massive influx in its caseload after April 2021, following the obligation to file for insolvency resumes, leading to the litigation and insolvency departments working collaboratively.
As we will all have noticed, there has been a steep increase in e-commerce and online distribution. In addition to this, several production freezes and supply bottlenecks have been keeping German law firms very busy. Most countries, as well as Germany, scrambled to become self-sufficient during the pandemic, as imports and exports were shut down across the globe. This has been reflected in the sectors that saw an increase in cases. As an example, the health sector has been very busy as Germany worked towards being able to self-supply all necessary PPE and medical equipment during the pandemic.
The Future of the German Legal Market
In the years to come, there are several practice areas that will continue to see a rise in workload due to the pandemic, as the world readjusts to the new status-quo. Some things will change irreversibly, as we can already see with the move towards a more flexible working schedule and it will be interesting to see what this means for the different sectors and their importance in the emerging world.
If you are a law firm looking to recruit for an office in Germany or a Lawyer looking to find out the options available to you in this jurisdiction, contact Matthew Dixon to discuss your needs with the help and support of a knowledgeable, committed Talent Partner.