Administrator BDO Stoy Hayward is discussing sale with several other law firms

Buyers are circling Manchester law firm Halliwells’ insurance division after the law firm fell into administration.

Halliwells said that its underlying insurance litigation practice remained healthy and had attracted interest from a number of potential buyers.

Its biggest creditor is The Royal Bank of Scotland, which is owed close to £20m.

The law firm fell into trouble after racking up “substantial property obligations”, according to administrators BDO Stoy Hayward.

Halliwells was founded in 1975 and has 115 partners and around 700 staff across four offices. It achieved turnover of £78m last year and its insurance division has worked on a number of legal panels, including NFU, AXA and Chartis.

BDO head of business restructuring Shay Bannon said: “Halliwells assumed substantial property obligations in recent years, which have significantly increased operating costs. We are in discussions with several other law firms regarding the sale of the business.”