Moore Stephens Victoria has launched  its new legal services division this month. Headed by Alex Nielsen, an accomplished lawyer with over 10 years’ experience in corporate, tax, real estate and asset management matters, the division will enable a multi-disciplinary approach for its growing clientele. 

“The big four financial services firms have proven there is a desire from clients for a more holistic model, and like all good ideas, this eventually trickles down,” says Mr Nielsen. “It’s an exciting opportunity to be one of the first in the mid-market space to evolve into this area, and it’s a chance to not only show Moore Stephens’ leadership but also create real value for our clients.”

Mr Nielsen, who left a position at global law firm Dentons to lead the new division, says embedding legal expertise into Moore Stephens’ day-to-day services will facilitate a new perspective.

“Our accounting and business advisors have many high-quality relationships, and as a lawyer, it’s a rare privilege to become part of a client’s core team rather than being consulted on one-off matters.

“This is a chance for clients to streamline the process while engaging multiple advisors to deepen our relationships with clients. It’s a single team, with a single client’s best interest in mind.”

The new offering will aim to reduce the friction across multiple advisors. “We’re interested in making this work by integrating legal services with our existing service lines across our tax, accounting and business advisory.”

Mr Nielsen emphasised that clients may still need to engage external legal counsel, and this is where his unique insight as part of the ongoing consulting team would be of advantage. “It’s like we’re an outsourced general counsel,” he says. “We can help clients get the most out of their existing lawyers, and where there’s a skill that we can’t provide, we can guide them on the best people for the job.”

Initially the division will leverage off the firm’s extensive network and Mr Nielsen’s expertise across a range of sectors. Moore Stephens Victoria will then monitor how the market responds to the new proposition as well as developing a more thorough understanding of how its clients consume legal services.

“As a lawyer, it’s not often you get the chance to mould something from the ground up, and there’s an opportunity to take advantage of the newer ways of operating in terms of technology,” he says. “We hope this will drive efficiencies and move away from time-billing in a way that works for both clients and the firm.”

“We’re coming in with an open mind about how best legal services can be delivered and whether that includes new service delivery models. Whatever we establish, it has to present the best outcome for clients.”