Anglo-American law firm Eversheds Sutherland has said it will completely cut its ties to Russia, as law firms face mounting pressure to sever all links they have to the country in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
In a statement, Eversheds said the firm had decided that it will “no longer have a presence in Russia,” after it said last week that it would refuse to take on any work from Russian entities.
Eversheds new pledge to entirely remove itself from Russia goes further than its previous promise not to take on any more Russia related work.
Instead, the firm said it will now push forwards with an “orderly transition” away from any ties to Russia, in compliance with any “professional obligations” it has to its Russian clients.
The law firm also reiterated that it has not been acting for the Russian government, or any Russian state-controlled entities or oligarchs.
Eversheds added that it would not be working on behalf of any such clients in the future. The firm added that most of its previous work relating to Russia has been “centered on advising multinational clients on their affairs relating to or in Russia.”
Eversheds decision to entirely pull out of Russia comes as law firms come under increasing scrutiny over their links to Russia and face mounting pressure to exit the country, in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Eversheds’ exit comes after Conservative MP Bob Seely last week accused four “amoral” lawyers of working for oligarchs to silence the British press.
Eversheds statements come after James Cleverly named BCL Solicitors as one of the law firms that sent letters to the Foreign Secretary, on behalf of Russian-Uzbeki oligarch, Alisher Usmanov, with a view to challenging the UK’s sanctions regimes.