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In the future for law departments, will two score huge, international firms remain?

An article in the ABA Journal (May 2005 at pg. 30) quotes the managing partner of Reed Smith, who “can foresee a time when there will be 30 or 40 major international law firms that are working with most of the major business organizations in the world and in most of the major markets.” That would be dreadful. [See my post of April 18, 2005 on behemoth firms.]

Firm size correlates with billing rates. [See my post of March 29, 2005 regarding convergence and law-firm costs.] Gargantuan firms with huge overhead will always leave room for nimble, less expensive firms. Conflicts of interest, too, will hamstring the Godzillas, unless they monkey around with the rules.