Published on:

The facts belie the claim that law firms ignore the cost of outside counsel services

Inside Counsel, July 2007 at 58, summarizes three findings with a provocative conclusion: “[I]n-house counsel think their outside firms are oblivious to the need to cut costs.” Finding one is that most law firms pad their bills. Unfortunately, aside from interpretive difficulties, the number of in-house lawyers who agreed with that statement dropped about eight percent (See my post of July 17, 2007.).

The second finding in support of that conclusion of law-firm cost insensitivity has to do with law firms seeking to reduce costs. It too is riddled with problems of clarity, but in any event the results show a ten percent drop (See my post of July 16, 2007.).

As to the third proof, views of inside lawyers about how much money law firms make, the survey finds a similar drop of 10 in respondents who agree that they make too much (See my post of July 17, 2007.).

The magazine concludes that on money matters the two sides are “worlds apart,” but the data they adduce show significant year-over-year improvement on all three components of its conclusion. Regrettably, I am not sure my critique of the findings matters since the questions and analyses of them are so riddled with interpretative mushiness.