The ALT practice originated in Belfast in 2011 – offering expert, technology-led solutions for tackling document- and data-intensive legal work as a fully-integrated part of HSF. ALT's pioneering launch was the first of its kind in Belfast – a "near-shore" offering from a major international law firm. The Belfast office has gone from strength to strength: growing from just 19 team members when we first opened to over nearly 200 today.

In the intervening decade, and encouraged by early success in Belfast, ALT has grown to become a global business – spanning 10 hubs across the US, UK, South Africa, China and Australia – and is a leader in the global NewLaw market. Earlier this year, the practice was proud to be unrivalled in its ranking in all four categories of the Chambers and Partners Alternative Legal Service Providers Guide 2022.

Our expertise

The Belfast office provides a full-service offering to its global clients, across its diverse practice groups:

Corporate

Our ALT Corporate team works across a full range of corporate, commercial and funds related deals, projects and "business-as-usual" retainers for many of HSF's major clients.  Our vision is to design solutions that make it more efficient to deliver existing legal services, as well as building new legal products and service delivery models for our clients.

We work closely with colleagues across HSF's global network on M&A, capital markets and outsourcing deals, supporting on major, market-leading transactions. We are constantly building and refining innovative solutions and processes, leveraging cutting edge legal technology, including AI software, to deliver volume-intensive tasks on these deals (e.g. due diligence, prospectus drafting and verification), in highly efficient ways.

As well as supporting on deals, we work directly with clients on their major projects, often triggered by regulatory changes.  We have extensive experience working for financial services clients, with particular expertise in the asset management / hedge fund sector, on projects relating to AIFMD, MIFID II, LIBOR, GDPR and ESG. 

We also support multiple clients with their day-to-day commercial contracting needs – from drafting, to negotiating to execution.  These mandates provide great exposure to client's legal and business teams, as well as collaborating with subject matter experts from other practice areas and offices at HSF.

Disputes

Our ALT Disputes team has a range of highly developed service offerings which support the firm's clients. From advice on the collection of documents through to trial, we provide an innovative, end-to-end, global service which engages an unrivalled team of experts.

The team’s vision is to build out solutions which address clients’ most pressing challenges – by creatively integrating the right combination of technology, processes and people, and re-thinking traditional delivery models. Examples of the work undertaken by our team include:

  • Working on secondments to our client's in-house litigation teams
  • Assisting HSF's global dispute resolution teams with high profile, complex cases including legal review, preparing chronologies of key facts, amending pleadings, witness statements, expert evidence and trial preparation
  • Assessing customer files as part of a remediation exercise, including drafting detailed assessments of the merits and quantum, and managing communication of outcomes
  • Undertaking detailed claim or file assessments for a portfolio of claims or as part of an internal investigation to assess exposure or risk, tailored to suit the matter
  • Managing volume claims and providing a collaborative, process-driven and cost-effective solution to claims management

Employment, Pensions and Incentives

Our ALT Employment team works very closely with the London Employment team on a range of matters including international work.  The London team is ranked Band 1 in Chambers and Partners; and the HSF EPI team are recognised as one of the top 3 global employment groups worldwide for Employment and Employee Benefits.  As a result of this recognition, the variety of work that ALT Employment undertakes is outstanding and the client portfolio enviable.

Our work includes supporting on complex transactional matters, advising clients on day-to-day employment related issues; preparation of contracts and policies; gathering and collating evidence for team moves, preparation of settlement agreements; co-ordination of global employment related instructions; supporting clients with large-scale data subject access requests and supporting on employment tribunal litigation.

Finance

Our ALT Finance practice is one of the fastest growing areas within our network. Our team works in a fast-paced and exciting environment, assisting global investment banks, asset management firms, financial institutions, and other key clients of the firm.

On the Transactional side, the team is regularly involved with high-profile banking and finance deals across a broad spectrum of specialist areas, such as energy finance, sustainability-linked finance and real estate finance, working closely with the London Finance team and other teams across the wider HSF network.

On the Projects side, the team works on large outsourcings, regulatory reform projects and other 'business as usual' projects for major banks and asset management firms in the financial services sector, acting as an extension of clients' in-house legal teams and leveraging legal tech to drive efficiencies.

Real Estate and Construction

Our ALT Real Estate team provide advice on all aspects of general commercial property, including asset management, acquisitions, disposals, real estate finance and corporate support for a wide range of clients, including institutional investors, across asset classes comprising offices, logistics, retail and leisure. The team provide services directly to our client base as well as supporting teams across the wider HSF network with high-value, high-profile transactions.  The work is as varied and interesting as it is demanding. Within the ALT Real Estate team you will have the opportunity to develop direct client relationships taking on a significant level of individual responsibility within a structured and supportive network with access to first in class resources and training.

Our ALT Construction team have in-depth experience of drafting and negotiating a broad range of construction contracts including building contracts, professional appointments and collateral warranties for commercial development projects. The ALT Construction team often advise on the construction aspects of wider Real Estate and Corporate transactions.

SEE IT, SEIZE IT, SUCCEED

SEE IT

We spot opportunities and spark new ideas.

SEIZE IT

We drive innovation by enabling and empowering one another to do our best work in an inclusive team.

SUCCEED

We achieve outstanding results for our clients, our colleagues and ourselves.

Awards

Chambers Alternative Legal Service Providers Guide: Band 1 in Litigation Services
Chambers Alternative Legal Service Providers Guide: Band 2 in Contract Lifecycle Management
Chambers Alternative Legal Service Providers Guide: Band 2 in Law Firm LPO
Chambers Alternative Legal Service Providers Guide: Band 3 in Flexible Legal Staffing

Innovation

We pioneer both in the work we do and the way we do it. Our lawyers are involved in ground-breaking developments and the cases we work on shape the future of law. Libby Jackson, our Managing Partner for ALT, explains how innovation is at the heart of what ALT does and how we support our clients in the ever-changing legal landscape.