Thinking of moving offshore ?

Our Offshore Legal Recruitment experts offer 1 on 1 consultations.

Why Offshore?

Why not?! Working as a Lawyer offshore offers so many benefits. The quality of the work, the variety of matters, the high value of projects, the outdoor lifestyle, low tax, high salary, family atmosphere, proximity to other countries. The list is endless. The following guide will give you an idea what work and life is like offshore.

A change of pace & Work /life balance

City life can be challenging – long commutes, public transport, the hustle and bustle, but not offshore.

Long commutes don’t exist offshore (given the size of the Islands!). Along with the beautiful weather, you will have a work-life balance that is simply impossible to achieve in the city. There is a culture of outdoor living so once work is done for the day, it's BBQ time.

Offshore life is generally more relaxed and easy going. Given the size of the islands and the population, there is a more family friendly atmosphere compared to the city.

Quality of work

Don’t let the relaxed atmosphere of Island life fool you. Once you start work, it is as fast-paced and competitive as it is in the city. Law firms naturally tend to have smaller teams offshore but this gives their lawyers the opportunity to work with other departments and business development is encouraged. Offshore lawyers will often handle a wide range of transactions and work on a higher number of matters at any one time.

Given the complexity and sophistication of offshore law, barrier to entry is very high. Lawyers must come from a strong academic background and have previous large city firm experience.

Salary and low tax

Working offshore as a Lawyer with the leading firms means you can demand city rates and in some cases Magic/Silver circle rates. Given the low (if any) tax rate, working offshore is very desirable from a financial point of view.

OffShore Tax Rates


Channel Islands


Cayman Islands


British Virgin Islands

Areas of practice in-demand


The size, value and quality of deals, especially in M&A is continuing to grow.


Given the tax structures in place offshore, funds lawyers have and continue to be in demand to assist the increasing number of clients setting up and managing their funds.


Law firms are always keen to speak with experienced Litigation and Insolvency lawyers given the amount of increasing companies and funds present offshore.

Banking & Finance

Offshore jurisdictions have a longstanding reputation as leading international financial centres and the jurisdictions continue to perform as domestic investment funds domiciles. For example, in early 2016, the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority showed nearly 11,000 mutual funds were registered with or licensed by it. Banking & Finance lawyers are involved in major deals acting for borrowers and many of the worlds banks.

Real Estate

The real estate market remains strong and some of the year’s largest transactions had significant offshore elements. Offshore law firms are therefore frequently required to advise the world’s largest investment banks on real estate financing.

Private Client / Trusts

There is an increasing demand for Lawyers with Private Client experience. There is a demand for contentious and non-contentious advisory Lawyers to assist clients including trustees, fiduciaries, settlors, beneficiaries and high net worth clients.

What are clients looking for in candidates?

Our clients demand the best candidates – what does that mean?

Candidates must have excellent academics from a reputable university and have experience from a leading city law firm. To work offshore you typically need to be UK qualified or qualified from a Commonwealth country.

Work permits and re-qualifying

The Channel Islands

There is no need for a work visa if you are an EU national in order to work in the Channel Islands but you must be England & Wales qualified.

The Jersey legal profession has three types of Jersey-qualified lawyers - Advocates, Solicitors and Notaries Public. Advocates have rights of audience to represent clients in all courts. Jersey solicitors have no general rights of audience. Notaries have no rights of audience.

Guernsey Advocates, have the right of audience to represent clients in all courts.

Cayman Islands

To work in Cayman you need to be UK or Common wealth qualified and have been offered a role by a law firm. The law firm usually assists with your Visa application.


To work as a lawyer in the BVI you must be UK qualified and generally be at least 3 PQE (although it is sometimes possible under 3 PQE) The law firm tend to assist with requalification and visa applications.

Cayman Islands

The Cayman Islands are part of an underwater mountain range between Cuba and Belize. The Islands lie 480 miles south of Miami (one hour and 30 mins flight). With an average year-round temperature range of about 24° C in winter to about 29° C in the summer, the Cayman Islands boast some of the finest tropical weather. All three islands - Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman - are coral outcrops surrounded by healthy coral reefs and dramatic walls close to shore, creating ideal conditions for the best diving and snorkelling in the Caribbean.

First sighted by Christopher Columbus on the 10th of May, 1503, the Cayman Islands were a refuge for pirates and shipwrecked sailors until the early 1700’s. Little is known about the initial discovery of the Islands, but it is believed that a large portion of the first inhabitants were deserters from Oliver Cromwell’s army in Jamaica. It's estimated that the Cayman Islands have a population of around 56,000, about half of which are of Caymanian descent. Despite that fact, there are approximately 113 nationalities that reside in the Cayman Islands. When you arrive at the Cayman Islands you’ll feel as though you’re already part of the Caymanian family.

Channel Islands

Clustering just off the coast of France, the islands of Jersey and Guernsey overflow with exquisite coastlines, beautiful harbours, shaded lanes and old-world charm. The warm Gulf of St Malo ensures subtropical plants, superb local seafood and an incredible array of bird life. The larger islands of Guernsey and Jersey are the main entry points, with a plethora of flights and ferries from both England and France. Air links between Guernsey and Jersey are good, while fleets of ferries also connect them and the other islands. The total population is about 160,000, of whom the overwhelming majority is made up of native islanders of Norman French and British extraction. The islands are proudly independent, self-governing British Crown dependencies and sport a wealth of quirky anachronisms. English is the main language and although place names may look French, local pronunciation is very different. As dependencies of the British crown, the Channel Islands are not part of the UK or EU. Local assemblies make their own laws.

Jersey & Guernsey enjoy one of the best sunshine records in the British Isles. It is the most southerly of the British Islands and lies just 14 miles from the coast of France. Warmed all year by the Gulf Stream the island has an enviable climate that is usually sunnier than mainland Britain. This isn’t too surprising when one considers that it shares its latitude with some of France’s famous wine-producing areas.

British Virgin Islands

The British Virgin Islands, part of a volcanic archipelago in the Caribbean, is a British overseas territory. Comprising 4 main islands and many smaller ones, it's known for its reef-lined beaches and as a yachting destination. The largest island, Tortola, is home to the capital, Road Town, and rainforest-filled Sage Mountain National Park. With Richard Branson being one of the Islands residents, it must be a great place to live! The name Virgin Islands comes from Christopher Columbus who named the multitude of islands after the alleged 11,000 virgins, followers of St Ursula, who were beheaded in the fourth century. Vernon Pickering’s A Concise History of the British Virgin Islands states, “The amount of islands and rocks, and the short stay in the area, convinced Columbus to choose that name, thus simplifying the task of assigning a name to each Island.

The BVI have a tropical climate, influenced by the trade winds, with a more pleasant period, from December to April, when the daily average temperature is around 24/25 °C and a more sultry period, from May to November, when the daily averages are around 28 °C.

Register your interest

Rowen Rossiter

Rowen is our offshore legal expert here at Capital Markets and over the years has built up an extensive network of clients with the leading “Offshore Magic Circle Law firms”. Along with understanding what each law firm expects from their staff, Rowen can advise you on salary, tax, on-boarding and all aspects of making an international move. Rowen and the team at Capital Markets understand the complexity of an international move and are here to answer any questions or concerns you may have.