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Enhance efficiency & minimise risk: third-party escrow services for law firms

Enhance efficiency & minimise risk: third-party escrow services for law firms

28 July, 2023
Global Escrow Services

In today's complex legal landscape, law firms are increasingly turning to third-party escrow services to enhance efficiency and minimise risk. 

Ocorian, a leading provider of independent debt administration services, offer tailored solutions to streamline the escrow process for deal parties. In this interview Sarah Grantham, Associate Director in Capital Markets at Ocorian, provides key insights into the benefits of outsourcing escrow services and how Ocorian sets up and manages escrows across various sectors. 

Discover why Ocorian is the trusted partner for law firms seeking reliable and efficient escrow services.

Why are law firms outsourcing escrows?

Law firms that historically held their clients' funds or assets in escrow are now increasingly looking to outsource this function. 

The heightened scrutiny and regulation means that law firms are discouraged from bearing the responsibility of administering escrows themselves. Outsourcing to independent agents allows law firms to minimise risk and focus on their core legal expertise, thereby enhancing client service.

Along with law firms, banks are also becoming more hesitant to administer escrows. According to Mondaq ‘emerging capital frameworks such as Basel III will make it harder for banks to hold such short-dated escrows on their balance sheets’.

They went on to say ‘None of this is to say banks will avoid escrow services altogether. But they are getting choosier, and the willingness to extend these services will increasingly depend on the relationship with the client - and the potential for profit’.

What are the benefits of using Ocorian as your escrow agent?

A key benefit of using a third-party provider is that they are not subject to the same regulatory obligations that banks are, thereby allowing them increased flexibility when it comes to the type of transactions and clients they can service. 

Ocorian offers a flexible and proactive approach to escrow services across a wide range of transactions, including M&A, restructurings, and litigation. 

Ocorian's team of dedicated product specialists have extensive experience in administering escrows for complex and multi-jurisdictional transactions. Ocorian's streamlined process ensures quick and efficient completion of KYC through our dedicated compliance team. Moreover, Ocorian has strong, established relationships with our banking partners, enabling us to open escrow accounts in all major currencies in less than 72 hours.

How does Ocorian set up an escrow? 

There are three steps that all work in tandem to opening an account with Ocorian:

  1. KYC – We require due diligence on both Party A and Party B. Our experienced transaction managers will act as the conduit between you and our compliance team, and will ensure KYC is completed quickly and painlessly. 
  2. Account opening – Ocorian can open segregated escrow accounts in under 72 hours in all major currencies. 
  3. Documentation – We’ll work efficiently with all parties to finalise the agreement and operational mechanics of the deal. We have our Ocorian agreement which can be used as standard or tailored to your needs. 

Which sectors does Ocorian specialise in for managing complex escrow transactions?

Ocorian takes a sector-agnostic approach to our service and can administer escrows across the majority of geographies and sectors, including aviation and marine finance. 

Why choose Ocorian for escrow services?

When it comes to escrow services, Ocorian stands out as a trusted partner for law firms seeking to outsource this critical function. 

With a responsive and proactive approach, our highly experienced team can manage both the operational and legal aspects of your complex transactions across any industry. 

You will have a dedicated transaction manager throughout the lifecycle of the transaction, enabling you to focus on your legal practice while Ocorian takes care of your escrow needs. 

To learn more about how Ocorian can optimise your services, contact us today.

What is an escrow agent?

The escrow agent is the trusted intermediary responsible for holding money, securities, or other assets until all contractual obligations specified in the agreement are fulfilled. Once the trigger event occurs, the agent is instructed to release the funds or assets to the predetermined party/parties.