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Rees Morrison’s Morsels #60 – Additions to earlier posts

Legal complexity. Since 2001, there have been 50,000 changes to the UK FSA rule book, including 4,000 pages of amendments in legal instruments between Oct 2006 and Jan 2007. The NASD, the US provider of financial regulatory services, had 135 rule filings in 2006, 1,099 changes to the Manual since 2004 and AMEX Rule 903 has changed six times since 2005. (See my post of March 13, 2007 on legal complexity.).

Slowing the torrent of emails – end the thoughtless Reply All. My consulting firm just completed a small tinker that could produce large savings of time: elimination of the one-click Reply All response to emails. Well, not eliminated, but made more difficult, as someone has to click two steps to carpet bomb the original recipients. I am told there is a way to handle this restriction – really, no more than a reminder to the trigger happy to think before they shotgun a response – for Blackberries (See my post of Nov. 28, 2007 about ways to moderate the deluge of email.).

Blog citations in the past month. Having just written about Flickr and its photos related to this blog (See my post of Jan. 3, 2008), I spent a few minutes on Google Blog Search. For the month preceding Jan. 3, 2008, here are the number of hits each of the following searches produced: “legal department” had 242 hits; “law department” had 2,394 hits – which partly answers a question I wrote about ages ago on which term is most common (See my post of May 24, 2005.); and “general counsel” had 6,337 hits.

Two more British terms: turnover and trainees. To my previous collection of British terms I would like to add turnover, which in the US means revenue, and trainees, which means those who have not been fully admitted to practice law (See my posts of April 18, 2005 [panels]; Nov. 13, 2005 [corporate and commercial work]; Feb. 9, 2006 [8 British terms including external advisor, legal director, make redundant, PQE, and tender]; and Oct. 31, 2005 [low-ball]; May 30, 2005 [instructing]; Feb. 9, 2006 [mandate]; May 4, 2007 [open plan]; March 13, 2006 #1 [fee earner, file]; April 19, 2006 #2 [barristers, solicitors, Practicing Certificate]; June 16, 2006 #2 [beauty parade]; Nov. 30, 2007 [charge-out rates]; Dec. 12, 2007 [company secretary]. My lexicon has reached about 21 terms that the British use and Americans don’t in the context of law department management.