Law Firm in Iran

Posted on Posted in Business Guidelines

Law Firm in Iran

Lawyers can operate different legal tasks by a law firm in Iran. Such firms can get involved in various fields of legal operations such as domestic cases, international commercial matters, arbitration, inheritance cases and so on. what has become so common in Iranian law firms is a cooperation between lawyers. They gather together in the same office and work on their legal cases either separately or together.

It happens sometimes that lawyers who are specialized in different fields like domestic and international cases work in one place and lessen their expenses in this way. Incorporating a company or a firm is not so difficult in Iran so most legal firms incorporate in Company Incorporation Bureau and then begin their job, giving them a more formal validity. 

A new generation of law firm in Iran has come into existence which provides both virtual and non-virtual services for their clients. FAR law firm is among those firms which tries to facilitate the legal process of its clients through providing various forms of legal services either virtually or non-virtually. The legitimacy and validity of each law firm in Iran depends on the proficiency and recency of its lawyers who apply the world`s newest methods to solve legal cases and satisfy their clients. 

Due to recent advances in foreign investment in Iran and the need for different legal services such as incorporating company, trademark registration, investment regulatory consultancy and so on, law firms have gained significance and competition between them is getting warmer and warmer. 

We are hopeful that such a competition and economic progress in Iran will lead to a better commercial and political environment

which opens the way for easier and more profitable foreign investment in Iran.

Termination of one's partnership

It is rare for a partner to be forced out by fellow partners, although that can happen if the partner commits a crime or malpractice, experiences disruptive mental illness, or is not contributing to the firm's overall profitability. However, some large firms have written into their partnership agreement a forced retirement age for partners, which can be anywhere from age 60 on up. In contrast, most corporate executives are at much higher risk of being fired, even when the underlying cause is not directly their fault, such as a drop in the company's stock price. Worldwide, partner retirement ages can be difficult to estimate and often vary widely, particularly because in many countries it is illegal to mandate a retirement age.

Rankings

As legal practice is adversarial, law firm rankings are widely relied on by prospective associates, lateral hires and legal clients. Substantive rankings typically cover practice areas such as The American Lawyer's Corporate Scorecard and Top IP Firms. Work place rankings are directed toward lawyers or law students, and cover such topics as quality of life, hours, family friendliness and salaries. Finally, statistical rankings generally cover profit-related data such as profits per partner and revenue per lawyer.

In an October 2007 press conference reported in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times  , the law student group building a better legal profession released its first annual ranking of top law firms by average billable hours, pro bono participation, and demographic diversity. Most notably, the report ranked the percentages of women,African-Americans, Hispanics, Asian-Americans, and gays & lesbians at America's top law firms. The group has sent the information to top law schools around the country, encouraging students to take this demographic data into account when choosing where to work after graduation. As more students choose working place based on the firms' diversity rankings, firms face an increasing market pressure in order to attract top recruits.

Law firms can also be formed as a business associations which are divided as follows:

Forms of Business Association
In addition to the Joint stock company, the Iranian Commercial Code provides for the following types of business association:
(a) Limited liability company (Sherkat ba Masouliyat Mahdoud)
(b) General partnership (Sherkat Tazamoni)
(c) Limited partnership (Sherkat Mokhtalet Gheyr Sahami)
(d) Mixed joint stock partnership (Sherkat Mokhtalet Sahami)
(e) Proportional liability partnership (Sherkat Nesbi)
(f) Production and consumption cooperative (Sherkat Ta'avoni Towlid va Masraf)
Of the mentioned listed companies, the limited liability company and the joint stock partnership provide for a limitation of shareholders' liability to the value of their shares. In the case of the mixed joint stock partnership, the law provides for both shareholders and unlimited liability partners. The principal difference between the joint stock and the limited liability company is that with the latter, the capital may not be divided into shares and the participants may not transfer their interests therein without the approval of a majority of the participants representing three-fourth (3/4) of the company capital.

History of law firm networks

There were two distinct and different reasons for networks developing in the legal profession. The first was internationalization which became globalization in the 1990s. Law firms simply needed international connections. The second was expansion of a number of large United States firms to become “national”. Smaller firms or firms with a niche practice required this same expertise in other states. The networks provided them this expertise.

The internationalization of the legal profession began much later than in the accounting profession. There was no real need because, unlike accounting firms which conducted worldwide audits, law firms in each country were able to deal with client matters. This changed in 1949, when Baker & McKenzie began to expand to non-United States markets to assist U.S. clients that were expanding overseas following WWII.

Internationalization was slow to start because the legal profession was much more restrictive than accounting in allowing foreign firms to enter and practice in their countries. There were rules requiring that the names of the partners be present in the name of the firm. The forces of the international community converged in the late 1980s. U.S. and English firms began establishing branches in the primary commercial centers. This new competition in local markets had the immediate effect of forcing local firms to evaluate alternative ways of providing services to their international clients.

The first international networks, called clubs, generally consisted of ten firms in different countries. The typical format was to hold several meetings a year among managing partners, to compare notes on management related issues. They were secretive networks because the members feared losing business from other firms. On the other hand, they would advertise to their clients that they had foreign connections and correspondents. Today the clubs are commonly known as “best friends networks.” Examples today are: (1) Leading Counsel Network  and (2) Slaughter & May.

The clubs evolved into networks in the 1980s. The new networks were not as secretive and even published directories, materials and brochures (Interlaw being one of the first examples). The members met annually. Some focused on specific practices, such as litigation, while others were more generic. Because networks were not thought of as strategic models, the membership selection process was not particularly rigorous. This selection process is reflected today in the networks which have firms with a wide range of sizes, i.e., small firms in locations where there are firms three and four times the size of the country.

Lex Mundi was formed in 1989. It was the first network where each member had to be among the largest and most established firms in a state or country. It was a business that provided members with many alternatives to expand their resources. Lex Mundi is a network organized around strategic objectives, rather than objectives being defined after the network was established. While different from the accounting network, the concept was that of an entity which provided services to members and should also have an established brand. The staff, board, councils and members collaborated to achieve the objectives.

Other networks like TerraLex, Meritas also known as the Commercial Law Affiliates and  INTERNATIONAL JURISTS, soon followed. These networks were not secret and operated also as businesses. Their stated objective was to create a branded alternative to the large United States and English law firms that had expanded into their countries.

U.S. national networks also developed in the 1980s. The first national network was ALFA  which was a network focused primarily on insurance litigation. The second was the State Capital Law Firm Group  which began as a national network of firms practicing in government affairs. To qualify for membership, the firms needed to have a former governor at the firms. Both of these networks became international, changing their names to State Capital Global Legal Network and to ALFA International.

Law firm networks are here to stay, with more than 170 already in existence. However, networks in the legal profession do not have the same level of respect as is found in the field of accounting. One reason could be that the large New York and London firms were the first to proactively globalize. The networks were simply a reaction to this globalization. Additionally, the large law firms have much larger marketing budgets than networks. Perhaps legal networks remain tarnished because they originated as clubs . However, in the light of day, it is now possible to argue that many of the elite law firms are themselves no more than networks. The world is coming full circle.

 

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