In the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia, many universities and colleges offer English-taught Master's degree ( LLM) programs that require students to demonstrate an excellent command of spoken and written English before beginning their studies. The LLM degree (Master of Laws), which is internationally recognized have major impact on legal proffessions.
English as a global language
There are more lawyers working in Switzerland than is generally assumed. In fact, a number of Swiss attorneys are well-trained specialist in specific areas of law, advising well-heeled clients and multinational companies. This demanding clientele seeks services that require special (English language) skills and knowledge in international law, trust and foundation law, tax law, inheritance law, as well as in matters which relate to corporate social responsibility. Due to this rapid expansion of international business relations, it has become extremely essential to offer various legal services not only in the official Swiss languages of German, French or Italian, but also in English. The globalization of trade and finance, science and technology, and the widening diversity of the workforce have magnified the significance of English language usage in Switzerland.
For a lawyer, it is not enough to just know English words
For a lawyer, it is not enough to merely know basic English words and phrases. In order to effectively communicate with clients in English, a lawyer must be familiar with all legal terms and be able to navigate complicated legal documents and contracts.
In general, English for Lawyers has a distinct terminology which makes it a "language within a language". Thus, in order to have any communication with an English-speaking client or to render any legal advice in the realm of international law, the practitioner must learn the terminology of English for attorneys. In the absence of this in-depth knowledge, it is not feasible for the practitioner to act with any professional integrity.
Swiss Corporate Lawyers: Specialists in international,
complex cases for affluent individuals and business entities
The presence of the World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters in Switzerland, as well as other renowned financial and technology driven institutions, life science, biotech, giant banking and insurance companies have proven the need for highly professional law firms to meet the growing demands of international clients, particularly in the areas of dispute resolution, free trade agreements, intellectual property-related (trademark & patent) international arbitration, transport, aviation, shipping and maritime disputes.
An increasing number of clients from the United States, Canada and the British Commonwealth of Nations, as well as people who speak English as a second language, such as affluent Russians, Brazilians, Indonesians, Chinese, etc., are looking for a Swiss lawyer who is fluent and confident in English to represent their case before the authorities or, if necessary, before any court within the frontiers of Switzerland. Another area in which the search for legal representation for international clients has greatly increased is asset management involving powers of attorney to perform commercial activities on behalf of a foreign business institution.
Employment, Inheritance, Divorce and Family Lawyers
Another group that relies on English-speaking lawyers for legal advice are highly skilled expatriates who live and work for foreign companies, most of which are headquartered in Switzerland. One example is Internet giant Google, with its second largest office outside the United States. Google Zurich employs well over 5000 multi-talented Data Scientists, Senior Managers as well as Technology Developers working on various Artificial Intelligence (AI) projects.
In fact, many of these highly skilled expatriates, especially those with little knowledge of German or French, find it difficult to protect their interests and rights when dealing with authorities, e.g. regarding social security, family matters, divorce and separation issues, inheritance law, immigration and employment matters. It is not uncommon for an English-speaking client to have difficulty communicating with a Swiss lawyer who is not fluent in English. Sometimes misunderstandings can further burden the case and increase costs.
Find a lawyer who understands you !
Whether you are a resident of Switzerland or happen to be a person outside of Switzerland and are looking for a competent English-speaking lawyer, the "Featured" Lawyers are swiss educated with many years of practical experience and possess additional academic degree or accredition from either British, Canadian or American University.
A significant of number of multinational companies are headquartered in Switzerland. With 328,000 employees worldwide, the largest by size of workforce is the food company Nestlé. In measured by market capitalization, 15 of the 500 largest global corporations are located in Switzerland. They operate in the pharmaceutical (Novartis, Roche), financial (UBS, Credit Suisse) or commodity trading (Glencore Xstrata) industries.
The majority of Swiss companies, especially SMEs, are family-owned. Over the past ten years or so, many managers of Swiss companies have been foreigners.
Apart from being a hub for excellent education, science, technology and innovation, Switzerland has outstanding universities with all-encompassing programs, many world-class public research institutions, and a thriving private sector which encourages research and development and conducts its own cutting-edge research.