The five partners in Lithuania who recently broke away from Baltic powerhouse Ellex have announced their plans to launch the Walless law firm in early 2019.
As reported by CEE Legal Matters on November 21, 2018, former Ellex Valiunas Partners Dovile Burgiene, Gediminas Reciunas, Joana Baublyte-Kulviete, Aiste Medeliene, and Laura Ziferman announced that they would be leaving the firm. “All partners have over 15 years of experience in the legal field, and thoroughly enjoy their profession," said Founding Partner Dovile Burgiene in a Walless press release. "We are intent on creating a new generation law firm, which is upheld by the highest integrity and quality standards. In recent years, clients have become more assertive, purchasing specific services they need from the best legal specialists in the market. We will offer services in those areas where we have most experience, backed by expert teams."
According to Dovile Burgiene, Ellex Partners Povilas Zukauskas, Mindaugas Lukas, and Evaldas Klimas, are expected to join their former colleagues soon as well.
According to Walless, "traditional legal practice has a prolonged and seemingly inherent association of tradition, intense labor, and strict rules, which is focused on the preservation of the status quo. But just like any industry, the legal industry has not escaped disruptions led by a new generation of lawyers who seek more openness, improved processes, and improved relationships with clients based on earned trust." The partners declare they are founding Walless "to initiate a change in the region’s legal landscape."
The Mergers and Acquisitions practice will be headed by Burgiene and Povilas Zukauskas, who is also an expert on insolvency of companies. Financial and Banking practices will be overseen by Gediminas Reciunas, and Joana Baublyte-Kulviete will be in charge of Financial Markets, Regulation, and Fintech. The Tax and Customs practice areas will be overseen by Aiste Medeliene and Mindaugas Lukas, and the Competition and Commercial law practices will be led by Laura Ziferman, while Real Estate and Construction practices will be managed by Evaldas Klimas.
“The name Walless reveals our main values - we will interact openly and without restrictions with our clients as well as inside of our firm, and will not limit ourselves when it comes to achieving the highest level of professionalism,” said Burgiene. “Our services will be customized to each client based on their individual needs. We want to be needed by our clients because of the quality of our services, and we are ready to grow together with them in the ever-changing environment of our industry. Inside the firm we will create a sustainable culture of trust and openness.”
“After announcing our departure from Ellex Valiunas, we received huge support in the market,” added Walless Partner Gediminas Reciunas. “Some of the top lawyers expressed their desire to work with us. Judging by the interest we have received in our company, we believe we will be starting with a team no smaller than 30 lawyers. We want change and challenges, and this support encourages us. It also shows us that the market is ready to be reshaped.”
Following the break-away of the Walless team, Ellex Valiunas hired former TGS Baltic Associate Partner Ieva Dosinaite and announced the restructuring of its management team (as reported by CEE Legal Matters on December 12, 2018).