Interlaw is a network of independent full service corporate law firms with a distinguished reputation for adherence to the highest international standards of ethics, client service and professionalism. Every prospective law firm is thoroughly vetted before an invitation is extended to join the network, and each member’s participation and performance is monitored to assure continued quality control.
Interlaw’s culture is one of inclusion and familiarity and is known as the “high touch” relationship-building network. Through a variety of initiatives, shared matters, referrals, conferences, Interlaw conferences, casual face-to-face firm visits, collaborative business development projects, social media, and meet-ups at professional conferences, Interlawyers build confidence in the capacity and capabilities of member firms.
Interlawyers foster friendships over many years and through many simple and sophisticated channels. Interlawyers know and like each other and become familiar with the capabilities of fellow member firms. Interlawyers trust that their clients will be looked after with the highest level of competency and attention.
Interlawyers extend the courtesies of “Best Client” performance to fellow Interlawyers and their clients, including immediate response, quality legal counsel, transparency in billing, sharing of best practices, and open communication. These are long-term relationships.
Interlaw thoroughly vets prospective member firms, and generally considers only law firms located in a jurisdiction in which Interlaw does not currently host the primary office of a current member firm. Interlaw is not an exclusive network, and the firms are not financially integrated. However, Interlawyers tend to refer business to one another because they know of the quality, concern and responsiveness of fellow members.
Interlaw and its member firms have been awarded high accolades from legal and business publications and organizations, as has Interlaw itself. Interlaw is ranked by Chambers & Partners in its highest category, “Elite” amongst all global law firm networks.
Benefits and Responsibilities of Membership
As a member-driven organization, lawyers and professionals of member firms are expected to adhere to shared core values of the association, especially by extending to members and their clients the courtesies of Best Client practices and faithfully attending the annual AGM and Regional Meetings.
Every new member firm receives a New Firm visit by the Director of Global Markets who interviews lawyers and professionals throughout the firm to introduce the benefits and responsibilities of Interlaw membership, learn about the firm’s practices, expertise and culture, and to discuss a variety of channels to promote the new member firm throughout the network. From time to time the Director of Global Markets may be invited to return to the member firm to lead workshops and provide guidance on business development, best practices in law firm marketing, and ways to enhance the Interlaw benefit.
Interlawyers are encouraged to be active with Interlaw by joining Special Business Teams and Affinity Groups, publishing news and updates in Interlaw Briefings, keeping their firm profile pages updated through the Membership Website Update form, attending Meet-ups at professional congresses, receiving Interlawyers visiting their location, and participating in various initiatives as they see fit, including, scholarship opportunities, and secondments.
Every Interlaw member firm may be peer-reviewed annually and each firm participates in the Triennial Routine Review as part of the ongoing quality assurance program. Since personal relationships are key to Interlaw, every firm is required to send at least one delegate to attend the Annual General (Global) Meeting and the firm’s regional conference. Most firms send more than one delegate to these sessions and many attend Interlaw conferences beyond their region.
As a member-driven organization, lawyers and professionals of member firms are encouraged to be active with Interlaw by joining Special Teams Affinity Groups, publishing in Interlaw Briefings, attending Meet-ups at professional congresses, receiving Interlawyers visiting their location, and participating in various initiatives, scholarship opportunities, and secondments.
Selection generally includes the following steps:
Identification and Engagement
- Clients, Interlawyers, the Board or the Secretariat may recommend law firms in which they have personal knowledge and admiration, or they may identify target cities for expansion.
- Law firms may submit a Prospective Member Form.
All submissions are kept in strict confidence and every submission of a prospective member firm receives a personal and individual response.
It is the entire law firm that becomes an Interlaw member, not just one individual lawyer. Therefore it is essential that the decision makers of the law firm support Interlaw membership and that the Interlaw relationship is thoroughly integrated throughout the member firms.
Due Diligence Process
- The Secretariat researches each legal market and profiles the independent law firms in the jurisdiction. Prospective members are considered for the firm’s reputation among peers, accolades from non-biased respected journals and associations, capacity (number of lawyers and depth of expertise) to perform superior legal work for clients expanding beyond borders, breadth of capabilities, size, primary and branch office locations.
- Interlaw generally supports only one member firm in a city or jurisdiction.
- Following consultation with the members and Board, the firms with the strongest credentials are selected to be shortlisted for possible membership.
- These prospective member firms receive pertinent information about the benefits and responsibilities of Interlaw membership.
- If there is mutual interest to pursue membership, the prospective member firm submits a senior Interlawyer or a member of the Board of Directors visits the prospective member firm as part of the Due Diligence process.
Law Firm Visit
- A due diligence team, consisting of senior Interlawyers or Board members from the region, visits the prospective firms to meet the senior management and practitioners and to learn more about the scope and strength of practice areas, firm governance, and range of clients served. The team will discuss the benefits and responsibilities of membership The prospective member law firm is encouraged to ask any question or convey any concern at this time, and to openly discuss with the Due Diligence team the level of interest in joining Interlaw. The DD visit will determine if the law firm fully understands and aligns with the core values and expectations of membership.
- Based on the results of the due diligence visits, a recommendation is made to the Board which then selects the candidate firm that demonstrates the “best fit” with Interlaw. Senior partners of the firm are then invited to attend a regional or annual meeting as an “Observer Firm”
Observer Firms’ Introduction to Interlaw; Invitation to Join
- During an annual regional or global meeting, the Observer delegates meet fellow Interlawyers, present the capacity and capabilities of the firm, and describe the culture of the firm. Interlawyers, the Secretariat and the Board welcome the prospective members.
- Following the presentation, if all goes as well as expected, the Board approves extending an invitation to the candidate firm to join Interlaw, the firm accepts, and is introduced to Interlawyers worldwide.
Lawyers and professionals of Member Firms commit to participating fully in the Association’s conferences and activities to foster the development and reinforcement of personal relationships.
May we hear from you?
If you know Interlaw members, or if you are familiar with Interlaw and would like to explore joining the Association, kindly submit the Prospective Member Form .