Foreign lawyers allowed to practice in Israel

Minister of Finance Yuval Steinitz on Wednesday signed a directive regulating the work of foreign lawyers in Israel, pursuant to the Foreign Lawyers Law. The directive removes barriers which prevented foreign lawyers from working in Israel, and permits collaboration between Israeli and foreign law firms. The directive will come into effect in one month.
Two months ago, the Knesset Constitution and Law and Justice Committee passed the directive and sent it to Steinitz for his signature.
The Ministry of Finance says that the directive will increase the exposure of the Israeli market to international law firms and their business customers, and will give Israeli customers of foreign firms a safety net. A foreign lawyer will be bound by ethical obligations, and entry conditions for foreign firms will include NIS 2 million in insurance mechanisms by deposit or by an insurance policy.
The directive is derived from the Israel Bar Association Law Amendment (5709-2009), which stipulates that the Bar Association may register foreign lawyers and law firms operating in Israel on the basis of their law license at a foreign bar association.
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