Mergers and their effects on law departments’ mix of outside law firms

Mergers of companies with law departments change the mix of law firms retained. The change occurs only in part because the merged law department culls some firms.

For many other reasons a remix of law firms that serve the company might result from a merger. Some of the reasons are the more sophisticated legal problems the larger company encounters favor different firms; the increased skill of the in-house counsel who survive the merger (See my post of Sept. 13, 2005 about the layoffs after the mergers of Oracle and Honeywell.); the relocation of the company’s headquarters; the new constellation of company executives and their preferences; heightened sensitivity to cost control efforts after the merger; and new conflicts of interest among the incumbent firms.

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