Very good English for lawyers/Sehr gute Englischkenntnisse als Anwalt

Alexander at Jurabilis links to the site e-fellows, which has a list of recruiting partners in big German law firms saying what qualities they look for if they are going to hire an associate.

Alexander points out that the statements don’t give much away. I was struck by the requirement of the big law firms for English:

Gute Englischkenntnisse.
Grundvoraussetzung sind gute Englischkenntnisse.

Sehr gute Englischkenntnisse (möglichst im Ausland erworben).
Sehr gute englische Sprachkenntnisse, die idealerweise im Ausland erworben wurden, sind erwünscht.
Einstellungsvoraussetzung sind sehr gute, im Ausland erworbene Englischkenntnisse. Eine zweite Fremdsprache ist wünschenswert.

Hmm. These people start learning English very early. Are they not allowed to learn in Germany when they’re ten or eleven? And does the progression from Gut to Sehr gut imply what it sounds like – a higher standard?
Sehr gute Englischkenntnisse, im englischsprachigen Ausland erworben.
Ah, that’s good. So English learnt in Poland won’t do?
Unabdingbar für die tägliche Arbeit ist verhandlungssicheres Englisch, idealerweise durch einen Auslandsaufenthalt vertieft.
Vertieft – now that makes sense.

Who judges this English, I wonder? Lawyers from a generation where these expectations weren’t evident?

Actually, I wrote ‘recruiting partner’. That was an over-simplification. These people were (in German):

Recruitment-Partner; Partner; Recruiting Manager; Recruiting-Partner; Recruitment, Human Resources; Personnel Manager; Managing Partner.

No wonder they need English.

3 thoughts on “Very good English for lawyers/Sehr gute Englischkenntnisse als Anwalt

  1. Socially minded law firms in the German-speaking world that are not just self-interested might bear in mind that the biggest immigrant groups that need help are non-English-speaking.

    Also the top law marks they are looking for don’t make a good lawyer with PR skills and immune from executive burnout or nervous breakdowns.

    These recrutating-partner or bighead-hunters should go to a drinksbar. tea-room or coffeehouse and learn how to hyphenate in English properly.

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