One of Scotland’s largest law firms, Harper Macleod LLP, is expanding into Shetland after acquiring the business of Dowle, Smith & Rutherford (DSR).

The Lerwick-based firm is led by Partners Christopher Dowle and Paul Rutherford. From October 1 it will be renamed as Harper Macleod, and its staff of 12 will join the leading law practice, which also has offices in Inverness, Thurso, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Professor Lorne Crerar, chairman of Harper Macleod, said: “This is a unique opportunity for our firm to enter one of the most interesting and dynamic economies in the whole of Scotland.

“DSR is one of the islands’ leading legal brands and this is a mutually beneficial opportunity for both firms, adding the full weight of Harper Macleod’s commercial and personal legal offering to the existing services provided to current and future clients.

“We know Chris and Paul very well, having worked closely with the firm for many years through our HM Connect referral network of 275 firms across the country. We are delighted to be welcoming them to the firm and to have the opportunity to deliver excellent legal services both on Shetland and beyond.”

Paul Rutherford added: “There has been a close bond between Dowle, Smith & Rutherford and Harper Macleod for many years and this integration is great news for our all of our clients and our people. The most important factor for us is being able to deliver excellence of service to our clients. Being part of such a successful business will give them access to a much greater range of expertise and strength in depth, while providing continuity of the service they have come to expect.

“Through Lorne and others, Harper Macleod knows the islands well and shares our vision, both for now and the future. We look forward to growing even stronger as part of such a renowned brand in the Scottish legal market.”

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