Legal industry still waiting for turnaround

Attended an Alameda County Bar Association seminar about where the legal industry is at today.  It was mostly attended by attorneys from smaller firms and solos.   Some of the solos were a product of the layoffs decimating the legal industry.

Takeaways:

Bad news: legal industry revenue way down, big law firm are hurting and there maybe more layoffs to come.  Things have not turned around, yet.  Areas hardest hist are M&A, transactional, real estate law.  Litigation hasn’t been as recession proof as reputation suggested.  Big companies pushing lawyers to settle cases because they don’t want incur costs of ongoing litigation.

Good news: Not clear that smaller firms and solo are being hit as badly.  Push for by Fortune 500 companies for alternative fee arrangements impacting big firms and may lead to innovation in the industry.  Promising practice areas are: bankruptcy, employment law, IP, tax and immigration.  Smart, targeted marketing still works.

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