If you thought that large corporations had deep enough pockets to pay whatever fees their outside counsel demanded, you’d be wrong. Turns out that corporate counsel are positively simmering over the way that many large law firms are ripping off clients with exorbitant mark-ups on contract law attorneys. Indeed, corporate counsel are so steamed that they voiced their discontent publicly at the recent ALM Legal Tech Show, as reported in this story from Conde Nast Portfolio.
The upshot for solos here is …opportunity. For example, some corporate counsel take e-discovery inhouse, but they may still need to hire contract lawyers for review – and may be willing to pay better after removing the biglaw middle man. Or, corporations may have a need for more skilled outside counsel to help manage the inhouse discovery teams. So if you’ve worked on massive litigation projects at law firms, and decide to strike out on your own, you may find more opportunities for than you imagined.
Corporate counsel are looking to keep costs down in other area as well. Although as this post at Law and More suggests that inhouse lawyers are looking for large discounts from brand name firms, if firms aren’t forthcoming with lower rates, perhaps these clients will look to solo and small firms.