Northern Ireland offers exceptional talent within a cost-competitive, low-risk location for legal services. 

One of the fastest growing sectors in the economy, the legal cluster in Northern Ireland includes:

  • Captive legal services and shared services centres of global law firms
  • Local and international legal process outsourcers (LPO) and legal consultants
  • In-house counsel and legal teams for major local and international companies
  • Legal services delivered by over 650 local law firms, 2700 solicitors and 700 barristers and QCs
  • Legal technology and services – including major law firm IT departments, local and international software vendors

Northern Ireland offers:

An abundance of high quality talent

Northern Ireland has a still largely untapped pool of culturally-compatible, highly-educated legal talent seeking quality legal roles in the region.

The region boasts two of the top 15 law schools in the UK. Our legal talent pool includes an annual surplus of some 500 law graduates as well as an experienced cadre of professionals who are keen to return and re-locate to the region. Around 80 per cent of paralegals are law graduates.

Such is the demand for quality legal opportunities in the region, investors have reported that they have attracted ten times as many qualified applicants as they require when advertising positions.

Cost competitiveness

Operating costs in Northern Ireland are on average around 20-30% lower than the rest of the UK and Europe.

Typical operating costs for a legal services centre in Northern Ireland are around 50% less than London and around 40% less than New York.

Northern Ireland's current rate of corporation tax is 20% and this will reduce to 12.5%, making it the joint lowest in Western Europe. Companies can also access the UK’s R&D tax credit and patent box schemes.

School of Law, Queen's University Belfast

The School of Law at Queen's University is a globally recognised law school with acknowledged international excellence in public law; constitutional law; corporate governance; commercial law; environmental law; human rights; criminology and criminal justice, as well as common law and private law.

The School is widely-acknowledged as one of the leading centres of legal scholarship and research in the UK. It has particular research strengths in public law; constitutional law; corporate governance; commercial law; environmental law; human rights; criminology and criminal justice, as well as common law. 

Our research activities have impacted nationally and internationally through a diverse range of projects ranging from slavery and trafficking, to the Hillsborough disaster, offender reintegration and desistance, and the role of judges in post-conflict settings. Staff have also made valuable contributions to vital public policy discussions in Northern Ireland in areas such as socio-economic rights, reform of criminal justice and policing, and amnesties and truth and prosecution models. Due to the devolved nature of government in Northern Ireland we offer unique opportunities for study and research.

The Legal Innovation Centre, Ulster University 

The Legal Innovation Centre at Ulster University brings together research into the application and impact of new legal technology and teaches current and future lawyers essential legal tech skills.  It was established in 2016 with the support of key industry stakeholders. A pioneering collaboration between the School of Law and the School of Computing and Intelligent Systems at Ulster University, the Centre promotes and supports innovation in legal services and access to justice.

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