Dozens of jobs are at risk in Lancashire after a major law firm filed a notice to appoint administrators.
Linder Myers, which has offices in Preston, Kirkham and Lytham, said it was in talks to sell the business or find a merger partner.
The firm employs 260 staff and 51 partners at its eight branches, including Chapel Street, Preston. Eighteen staff are employed in Preston and Kirkham and 34 in Lytham.
The firm said the business was in the meantime carrying on unaffected.
Linder Myers Solicitors has filed its intention to appoint administrators at the Manchester District Registry Court.
The firm has offices in Manchester, Lancashire, Shropshire and Chester and posted a turnover of £18.7m for the year ending 30th November 2013.
Bernard Seymour, managing partner at Linder Myers said: “The increasingly challenging environment in which law firms are operating has made trading very difficult in recent years.
“Following a successful period of growth at Linder Myers, the last few months and the Christmas period in particular, proved difficult and we have taken the decision to file an intention to appoint administrators in order to protect the business and our valued employees and partners.
“We are currently having positive negotiations with a number of interested parties with a view to either selling the business or merging with another firm. Linder Myers clients will remain unaffected as business continues to trade as usual.”
Linder Myers delivers a broad range of legal services to both individuals and SME and owner - managed businesses.
The firm is a member of the Consulegis Group, the international network of over 1,700 lawyers from 150 cities worldwide.
The firm has acquired a number of practices via pre-pack administration in the last two years, including Rowlands Field Cunningham, Shammah Nichols and most recently Lancashire firm Dickson Haslem.