Banking and finance law focuses on the contractual relationship between lenders and borrowers. In all financial transactions, the main aim is to negotiate and manage this relationship to ensure the represented party’s interests are met both legally and commercially.
Different areas in this vast topic include the following:
Banking and finance law consists of multiple areas that are technically-complex and constantly evolving. As a result, lawyers in this field often specialise in a particular area. A banking and finance lawyer will either represent the borrower or the lender, and the majority of their role will focus on the transactional elements of arranging deals.
Regardless of the specific area of banking and finance, lawyers in this field support with negotiations, structuring and handling financial arrangements, and conducting due diligence.
A banking and finance lawyer will need to balance compliance by adhering to all applicable laws and regulations (which are often across multiple jurisdictions) and mediate parties by helping them reach mutually-satisfactory terms.
Another element of the role of a banking and finance lawyer is to take an active interest in future trends that may influence a transaction. After applying analytical fact-checking and keen attention to detail, a banking and finance lawyer then needs to be able to communicate information in a clear and succinct way.
Corporate finance law is an area of banking and finance law that concentrates on economics from the perspective of entrepreneurship and business. Many startups, medium-businesses looking to grow, and large companies exploring acquisition and merger options require funding.
Businesses will, therefore, be introduced to corporate finance law to obtain the necessary funds to inject capital for business operations. Governing these financial transactions is a body of law that both constructs and regulates borrowing and lending of this nature.
Corporate finance law is a comprehensive body of law that draws upon multiple other areas to structure financial deals.
These areas of law include:
International banking law delves into legal issues surrounding global banking requirements, regulations and the complexities associated with understanding how these overlap and operate alongside each other.
The specific area of banking and finance law also concerns anti-terrorist laws, money laundering and financial crime prevention. Set in the current financial technology sphere, where post-2008, financial transactions sit within specific regulatory frameworks, national and international banking law incorporates:
International banking law explores default, negotiations, remedies, mediation and enforcement. International banking lawyers must work with specific financial service regulations and legislation that sets out how banking clients must handle financial matters in order to comply with relevant laws.
To become a banking and finance lawyer, you’ll need to demonstrate a certain set of skills, interests and, if possible, related work experience. Read on to find out how to increase your chance of landing a training contract in banking and finance law.
Some key attributes would be:
You could either choose to take the graduate route and complete an undergraduate degree in law, or in another subject and then a conversion course, before taking the LPC and getting a training contract. Alternatively, you could do a legal apprenticeship to qualify as a solicitor or become a chartered legal executive and then specialise in one of the areas of banking and finance law.
Work experience with banks, accounting firms or any other company demonstrating an interest in finance would look good for this career path and also give you the chance to develop commercial awareness. You should also consider going on a vacation scheme with a firm that specialises in banking and finance law.
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