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Smaller departments, pooling their legal spend, might obtain better terms from a firm

Martine Turcotte, Chief Legal & Regulatory Officer of BCE, Inc., lobbed out a provocative idea at a recent panel. In the words of the ACC Docket, Jan./Feb. 2010 at 91, she “mentioned an interest in exploring the pooling of resources with other companies to get lower rates based on volume.”

If my leasing work combined with your leasing work gives us a sufficient spend to get better service and deeper discounts from a firm, why not negotiate jointly with it? Some British agencies already share pricing information (See my post of Jan. 21, 2010: UK government legal departments collect fee data from firms.).

To be sure, the negotiation would be fraught with lawyerly issues and concerns. Ideally the firm already represents both (or all) the clients. The kernel of this idea makes sense to explore.