Can Lawyers Stay in the Driver’s Seat? – Daniel G. Currell, Corporate Executive Board; M. Todd Henderson, University of Chicago – Law School. University of Chicago Institute for Law & Economics Olin Research Paper No. 629. January 16, 2013
“The law firm business is thriving, despite significant pain in the legal sector as changes take place. The continuing success of Big Law is in part because of its ability to adjust quickly to changes in demand by hiring and firing staff. But as Larry Ribstein saw, big changes nevertheless loom on the horizon. These changes will likely be driven by a series of specialized service providers who compete with law firms from a lower price point as Benjamin Barton points out in his article in this volume. If history is a guide, cheaper alternatives will evolve into higher-quality alternatives, at which point the law firms most invested in the status quo are likely to suffer greatly. While the significance of this disruption is often viewed in terms of how it will affect lawyers, in fact it should be assessed mainly from the perspective of consumers and society: does the quality of legal services rise or fall at any given price point?”
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