National law firm Holding Redlich has expanded into the capital, appointing two partners and a special counsel to lead the new office in Canberra.
On Monday, 5 October, Holding Redlich opened the doors on a new office in Canberra, with newly-appointed partners Elizabeth Carroll and Paul Menzies-McVey, as well as special counsel Richard Monteleone, to lead the new office.
The Canberra presence forms part, the firm said, of its strategy to build on its “rapidly-growing” government law practice.
The firm now has five offices across Australia, including its presences in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, and Cairns.
Ms Carroll (pictured) – who is also the president of the Law Society of the ACT and director of the Law Council and, in 2020, won the general counsel of the year award at Lawyer Weekly’s Women in Law Awards – joins the firm as a new partner after serving as chief legal counsel for IP Australia for the past five years.
Mr Menzies-McVey also joins as a new partner, having most recently served as assistant secretary in the Office of the National Data Commissioner and, before that, as chief counsel at the Department of Social Services.
The appointment of the pair brings the firm’s total number of partners nationwide to 72.
Holding Redlich national managing partner Ian Robertson AO said that the firm opted to establish a Canberra office on the back of increasing demand for legal services spanning a broad range of Australian government agencies and departments.
“The opening of our Canberra office will enable us to much more effectively meet the needs of our Australian government clients by boosting our national team with outstanding senior Canberra-based lawyers,” he explained.
“Holding Redlich’s newly appointed Canberra team has invaluable direct experience within government. Each has led the legal teams of government agencies and brings an in-depth understanding of the needs of Australian government clients, as well as the unique context in which they operate.”
Speaking about her new role, Ms Carroll said that the value of face-to-face engagement with clients “could not be underestimated”.
“I was attracted to Holding Redlich’s philosophy of putting the needs of the client at the centre of what it does and for its reputation for high-quality advice and service. This aligns strongly with my values and approach,” she said.
“While the operating environment today has demonstrated the extent to which we can serve our clients remotely, a strong understanding of the local market dynamics is key to delivering what clients want.”
“The pandemic has increased the involvement of government in all aspects of our lives, and with that comes an expectation of accountability. Legal advice plays an important role in supporting responsiveness, without compromising on long-term implications,” Ms Carroll proclaimed.
Mr Menzies-McVey added that the Australian government is a “complex ecosystem” for lawyers, and being on the ground in Canberra is important to help clients navigate the evolving environment.
“Having worked at senior levels within government departments and agencies for many years, I know the value of having lawyers who understand the various non-legal considerations that public service leaders must grapple with, as well as the breadth of legal issues facing government,” he reflected.
“Given where we are in the election cycle, there is likely to be increased demand for legal services during 2022 to support new initiatives, including legislative and technology projects.”
Holding Redlich has a “strong and long-standing” track record of advising government clients at all levels, it said in a statement, pointing to its appointment to 19 areas on the whole-of-Australian-government legal services panel. The firm provides legal services to governments of all levels and sits on the Victorian, New South Wales, and Queensland state government panels in addition to the whole-of-Australian-government legal services panel.