kurguzy wrote: "Fluency" is not enough to argue persuasively. Unless you work for an English speaking firm, for which you would need a JD.
I agree with that. My German is fluent (from spending a year as a high school exchange student and majoring in it in college), and a large part of the reason I spent my 1L summer in Germany was to bring it up to a professional standard. I felt like if it was on my resume as fluent, I should be able to actually WORK in that language in the legal profession. While my summer did certainly help some... I did plenty of legal research in German and interacted with the attorneys and staff and even the occasional client in German, so I learned a decent amount of legal vocabulary and learned some about their legal system... there is no way I could argue in court in German or even write a good brief.
Now, for an American firm, especially for a temporary assignment abroad, that might be enough. The attorneys at my office did tons of work in English. They interacted with German attorneys (within the firm and outside it) and clients in German, but everyone else (whether American, Danish, Chinese, etc.) in English, and there was a lot of this international communication. A significant portion of their work product was in English, even if research was done in German (we all know reading is much easier than writing). But I do agree that, to really be able to work effectively in an office like that and not so ridiculously limited in the types of work assignments you can do that no firm would want you, you have to be pretty damned proficient in the native language.