Back on the firing line again – law departments that “fire” law firms

I dislike the publicity given to findings about how many law departments have “fired” one of their law firms, yet have written frequently on the topic (See my posts of Oct. 30, 2005 on reasons: expensive, silent and stupid; Aug. 28, 2006 on a figure of less than 1% of firms fired per year; Jan. 24, 2006 on ambiguous data; Sept. 25, 2005 on Dial firing a firm for understaffing; May 4, 2005 on supposed statistics for loyalty; Oct. 16, 2006 about a significant drop in the fired percentage; March 17, 2006 on terminations for lack of diversity; and Jan. 14, 2007 on Accenture firing a firm for not completing a diversity survey.)

More tinder comes from ACC’s Seventh Annual Chief Legal Officer Survey at 2, which reports data from 837 respondents. Asked, “Have you fired any of your law firms this year,” 68 percent had not, while 32 percent had.

Of the one third that had fired a law firm during 2006, 20 percent of the firms had maintained “a significant relationship” with the law department. My smoldering confusion regards the 62 percent of the respondents who said that the question “Did any of the firms you fired qualify as a significant relationship” was “not applicable.” Does this mean that most of the law firms “fired” were not important to the law departments?

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