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Headcount constraints or cost constraints: the tensions with low-cost lawyers overseas

Lawyers in some countries cost less than U.S. paralegals. I have seen compensation figures for Latin American lawyers, local lawyers not expats, that range around the $50-75,000 mark. In parts of Asia, the figures are comparable, or lower.

Because lawyers are not everywhere as expensive, it is better for general counsel to talk about costs than about heads. A global department can accomplish something like offshoring within its own ranks, simply by hiring more lawyers in lower-cost areas and having them take on more work.

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