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Not so long ago, law firms were almost entirely domestically focused. Granted, shipping firms had offices in key shipping locations, and a minority of British practices had offices in Paris and Hong Kong, as well as one or two very small representative offices in other parts of the world. In the main, US firms had small outposts and representative offices in London and a few other locations, while practices such as Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Baker & McKenzie, Coudert Brothers, Jones Day and White & Case had a more international spread. But that was about it.

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