This blog has said very little about initiatives by companies, through the efforts of their law departments, to influence prospective legislation and change existing legislation. These endeavors are generally called “lobbying” (See my post of March 3, 2006: lobbying; March 3, 2006: lobbying’s oblique relation to law departments; Aug. 8, 2006: European GCs intertwine legal and corporate affairs; and July 18, 2006: political events affect law departments through government affairs.). Undoubtedly there are enormous nuances in that term, as an entire industry helps companies shape the legislative and regulatory landscape.
A few posts recognize that some legal departments have responsibilities in the arena referred to as government affairs, which complements lobbying (See my post of Aug. 27, 2005: Microsoft; June 7, 2006: MedImmune has government affairs managers in its law department; and Aug. 14, 2006: Mellon Bank general counsel oversees government affairs.).