Guernsey is in the Channel Islands, a Crown Dependency located 80 miles to the south west of England and 30 miles west of France. Financial services has been the major economic driver since the 1960s, with Guernsey recognised as offering institutional and high net worth investors efficient, quality offshore legal services. Guernsey has a thriving legal community, with Carey Olsen, Ogier and Mourant Ozannes the market leaders.
Salaries in Guernsey are comparable to London, with NQs earning about £60k and Senior Associates earning around £90k. Partners start at around £160k, although Senior Equity Partners are known to earn in excess of £600k. Discretionary annual bonuses tend to be better than onshore. Other benefits, such as pension and holiday allowance are also very attractive. Flights and relocation expenses are included.
Income tax is 20%.
Work permits are not required for UK and EEA passport holders. Commonwealth citizens may also be exempt if they qualify for a UK ancestry visa.
To become a Guernsey qualified lawyer you need to sit exams. However, lawyers can practice on the island with their existing qualifications, although Litigtors will not have rights of audience until they pass the local exams.
Housing is a relevant consideration but your sponsoring firm should ensure you have access to the local market.
Guernsey is the sunniest place in Britain, with over 60 beaches. Commute times are short and the hours are better, leaving most people time to enjoy an active outdoor lifestyle. Sailing is particularly popular with many neighbouring islands close by. The island has a very high standard of living and the schools are excellent.
Lawyers in Guernsey enjoy a significantly better work-life balance than their onshore counterparts, whilst still enjoying excellent international work.